Comments on Should you contribute open data to OpenStreetMap for free?

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companies not understanding that ease of access and availability of data profits them is common topic, they not only aren't making it easy to access details about their services but are even taking to court people who spend time bringing them customers by exposing this data

it's so weird...


What is your definition of "Member of the OSM community" and how do you know that these organizations don't employ anyone meeting your criteria? Unless your criteria is extremely narrow, I doubt you know that.

Mateusz Konieczny

> Microsoft Bing uses OSM in several regions, and is slowly moving from it’s traditional providers to OSM globally. They provide machine-learning (ML) datasets that they have computed from areal imagery. They employ nobody in the OSM community.

Microsoft Bing made its aerial imagery available for OSM editing, this is often very very very useful for mapping (speaking from own experience as an OSM mapper).


> The rights that you have under this agreement are limited solely to aerial imagery use in a non-commercial online editor application of OpenStreetMap maps (an "Application")

see also extra info in

It is an interesting case as cost of that is basically nothing to Microsoft, this action has a very clear benefits to them, has negative influence on their competition like Google, has basically no negative side effects to OSM community (unlike company hiring people) and provides service that would cost OSM community ridiculous amounts of money if we would need to buy it (it would be impossible for us to buy worldwide aerial imagery of such quality).

It is weird to not mention it in that article.


As someone who contributed a lot to OSM in the early years, I can't say I mind in the least if big companies now use it because they're not taking away my ability to use it and to access the original data. If you contribute to Google, you have no say in how they use the data you give them. You really are just doing unpaid work for them. In OpenStreetMap you can add more specialist data and there are separate renderings that give those more predominance. You can download the raw database if needed. The only interface to Google is what they provide along with all the ads.

Clifford Snow

I know for a fact that Apple employees OSM mappers. They were hired because of their background with OSM and have been with Apple for a number of years working with the team that contributes to OSM. Because of Apple excessive secrecy they are not allowed to say what they do.

Microsoft originally employed and active OSM contributor who later left the company. They also employed an active contributor to train their mapping staff.

If you are going to publish facts, please make sure you actually know your facts.

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