Although this isn’t strictly geo based, I think the topic is important enough to anyone with information (A.K.A Data) to mention. The folks over at ars technica have an interesting discussion about a new report released by the Institute for Public Policy Research on Intellectual Property Law. I can’t find a link directly to the report itself, but their summary of what it says is pretty interesting in and of itself. Basically the report says that IP needs to move to a new model that includes consumers in the policy process. Knowledge is both a public good and a private commodity and perhaps we need to be thinking that knowledge is foremost the former rather than foremost the latter. The report was funded by some big IP players in the UK (BBC and the like), which isn’t a huge surprise that they would be interested. What I wonder given our recent talk with Ed over at the Ordinance Survey is how this might impact spatial data in the UK if their suggested model takes hold. Will that data become more of a “public good” as the report suggests?
As dorky as it sounds, this is a really neat time to be both in the political science and geospatial realms. It’s really fascinating to watch these debates play out in the private, public, and governmental arenas.