Re-Use Request for Public Rights of Way Information

The request was partially successful.

Robert Whittaker

Dear Cambridgeshire County Council,

Under the Re-Use of Public Sector Information Regulations 2015, I would like to formally request permission to re-use the information about the County's Public Rights of Way that can be obtained from the maps / data served by my.cambridgeshire.gov.uk. I would like permission to re-use this information under the terms of the Open Government Licence 3.0, for any purposes permitted under that licence. I am happy for any disclaimer/attribution text to be added to the Licence concerning the accuracy and/or non-definitiveness of the Rights of Way depicted.

Yours faithfully,

Robert Whittaker

PS: I know that a previous re-use request that I made to you for this information was turned down (https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/p.... But this new request is made under the 2015 Regulations, which I believe allow fewer reasons to refuse a request than the old 2005 Regulations (under which my previous request was considered).

FOI, Cambridgeshire County Council

Dear Mr Whittaker

Re: Freedom of Information Request ref 5535.

Thank you for your email of 22^nd July 2015 in which you requested
information about the Re-Use Information – Public Rights of Way.

Your request will be dealt with in line with the Freedom of Information
Act and its regulations. In accordance with the Act, the Council aims to
respond to all requests within 20 working days, in this instance, by 19^th
August 2015.

If we require further information, clarification or a fee in order to
fulfil your request we will contact you again. Please quote the reference
number above in all future correspondence concerning this request.

Yours sincerely

 

Information Governance Team

Cambridgeshire County Council

 

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FOI, Cambridgeshire County Council

1 Attachment

Dear Mr Whittaker

 

Re: Request for re-use ref 5535

 

Further to your email which was received on 22 July 2015, please see the
attached letter under Regulation 8(2) of the Re-Use of Public Sector
Information Regulations 2015.

 

Yours sincerely,

 

 

Jo Withey

Information Governance Officer

Cambridgeshire County Council

SH1001

Shire Hall

Castle Hill

Cambridge

CB3 0AP

01223 729164

[1]www.cambridgeshire.gov.uk
[2]www.cambridgeshire.net

 

The information in this email is confidential and may be legally
privileged. It is intended solely for the addressee. If you receive this
email by mistake please notify the sender and delete it immediately.
Opinions expressed are those of the individual and do not necessarily
represent the opinion of Cambridgeshire County Council. All sent and
received email from Cambridgeshire County Council is automatically scanned
for the presence of computer viruses and security issues. Visit
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References

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1. file:///tmp/www.cambridgeshire.gov.uk
2. file:///tmp/www.cambridgeshire.net
3. http://www.cambridgeshire.gov.uk/

Dear FOI,

Many thanks for your letter, although I must say that I am more than a little disappointed that you have been unable to respond to my re-use request within the normal time period. Since you are relying on s8(2), I believe that you are also required to comply with s8(3)(b) by the end of the 20th working day following my request. This requires you to provide me with an estimated date by which expect be able to respond. I did not find such an estimate in your letter.

Also, would you be able to shed a little more light on exactly what the "complex issues" are? I can't see how the information could be outside the scope of RoPSI, the form and format should be irrelevant as I'm asking to re-use information I can already access, and the consequences of re-use should be no different from those experienced by the vast majority of other surveying authorities that already allow the re-use of their Public Rights of Way data.

Yours sincerely,

Robert Whittaker

Dear Jo Withey,

Another 20 working days has gone by since your last letter. Not only have you still not responded to my re-use request, but you have have not even replied to my request for an estimated date pursuant to RoPSIR s8(3)(b), nor to my request for more information on exactly what the "complex issues" are.

Given that there shouldn't be anything particularly complicated about this re-use request, as many other local authorities already make the same information available for re-use, I do not feel that it is reasonable in the circumstances for you to have taken more than 20 working days to respond, let alone 40.

Please acknowledge this message and provide an estimated date for your decision by return. If I do not hear back from you by the close of business tomorrow, Friday 18th September, I shall be submitting a complaint to the Information Commissioner.

Yours sincerely,

Robert Whittaker

victor allen left an annotation ()

This Council does not appear to bother about any time limits.
Please contact n.ingle@ntlworld.com and I will share my experiences.

FOI, Cambridgeshire County Council

1 Attachment

Dear Mr Whittaker

Thank you for your email received on 22 July 2015, in which you requested
permission to re-use information under the Re-Use of Public Sector
Iformation Regulations 2015.  Please see the Council's attached response,
permitting re-use, for further information about the terms and conditions
of re-use.

If you are unhappy with the service you have received in relation to your
request and wish to make a complaint or request a review of our decision,
you should write to Dan Horrex, Corporate Information Manager, c/o
Information Governance Team, Box SH1001, Shire Hall, Cambridge CB3 0AP or
by email to [1][Cambridgeshire County Council request email] within 40 days of the date of
this letter.

If you are not content with the outcome your complaint, you may apply
directly to the Information Commissioner for a decision. Generally, the
ICO cannot make a decision unless you have exhausted the complaints
procedure provided by the Council. The Information Commissioner can be
contacted at: The Information Commissioner's Office, Wycliffe House, Water
Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire SK9 5AF or via their website at
[2]https://ico.org.uk/concerns/getting/.

Yours sincerely,

Information Governance Team

Cambridgeshire County Council

SH1001

Shire Hall

Castle Hill

Cambridge

CB3 0AP

[3]www.cambridgeshire.gov.uk
[4]www.cambridgeshire.net

 

The information in this email is confidential and may be legally
privileged. It is intended solely for the addressee. If you receive this
email by mistake please notify the sender and delete it immediately.
Opinions expressed are those of the individual and do not necessarily
represent the opinion of Cambridgeshire County Council. All sent and
received email from Cambridgeshire County Council is automatically scanned
for the presence of computer viruses and security issues. Visit
[5]www.cambridgeshire.gov.uk

References

Visible links
1. mailto:[Cambridgeshire County Council request email]
2. https://ico.org.uk/concerns/getting/
3. file:///tmp/www.cambridgeshire.gov.uk
4. file:///tmp/www.cambridgeshire.net
5. http://www.cambridgeshire.gov.uk/

Dear Information Governance Team,

Many thanks for your response. However, I am afraid I am not happy with the terms you have offered, with respect to both the charges and the licence. I believe that you may be contravening the Re-Use of Public Sector Information Regulations (RoPSIR) in both of these areas, and so I must ask that you reconsider your response.

CHARGES

RoPSIR r15 (2) states that "any charge for re-use must be limited to the marginal costs incurred in respect of the reproduction, provision and dissemination of documents."

The language in this regulation is very specific. It is not permitted for you to charge for your time in considering the re-use request, nor for any time spent in preparing the response or writing the licence. In fact the only activities in the list you provided that it would be permitted for you to make a charge for would be the attaching of the data file to an email and then the sending it.

However, the information that I requested permission to re-use here was specifically the information I could already access through your website, so I don't actually require you to expend any effort in attaching a file or sending it via email. I would estimate that the marginal cost of me accessing your website to retrieve the data would be a matter of pence. In fact, since I intend to access the data this way anyway for my own personal use, whether or not you grant permission for re-use, arguably the marginal cost to you is actually zero.

Finally, regarding your comment about your consideration of introducing a charge for a reasonable return on investment, my understanding is that r15(5) and r15(6)(c) -- the regulations that allow such charges to be levied -- only apply when r15(3)(a) or r15(3)(b) are engaged. I do not believe either of these clauses apply to you in this situation, and therefore you would not be permitted to levy a charge to obtain any reasonable return on investment.

I therefore request that you reconsider the charge for re-use, as any such charge in this case would be in contravention of RoPSIR r15 (2).

LICENCE

I specifically asked for permission to use the information under the standard Open Government Licence [1]. The licence you offered falls short of this in several areas:

* It is non-perpetual, being valid for only a limited term;
* It is revocable by you for reasons other than non-compliance;
* It severely limits further downstream re-use by third parties by preventing further sub-licensing;
* It is not forwards-compatible with the Open Database Licence [2];
* It does not meet the Open Definition [3].

All of these short-comings unnecessarily restrict the way the data can be used, contrary to RoPSI r12(2)(a). The particular use I have in mind is to help improve the coverage of Rights of Way in OpenStreetMap, which requires a perpetual licence that is forwards-compatible with the Open Database Licence.

Given that you are only permitted to charge the marginal costs incurred during the reproduction, provision and dissemination of the data, there is no chance for you to profit from repeatedly granting non-perpetual licences, or restricting downstream use to force other users to directly licence the data from you. Given
that you can impose suitable attribution and disclaimer statements under the Open Government Licence, there is no reason to restrict third-party use for fear of misrepresentation. I can see no other necessary reasons to impose any further restrictions or terms beyond those already contained in the Open Government Licence v3.

I therefore request that you reconsider granting re-use of the data under the Open Government Licence v3, in order to ensure compliance with RoPSI r12(2)(a).

Yours faithfully,

Robert Whittaker

[1] http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/doc/o...
[2] http://opendatacommons.org/licenses/odbl/
[3] http://opendefinition.org/od/2.0/en/

FOI, Cambridgeshire County Council

1 Attachment

Dear Mr Whittaker

Thank you for your email received on 13 October 2015, in which you
requested a review of the Council’s response to your recent request for
re-use of public sector information.

Please find attached the Council’s response.

If you are not content with the outcome your complaint, you may apply
directly to the Information Commissioner for a decision. Generally, the
ICO cannot make a decision unless you have exhausted the complaints
procedure provided by the Council. The Information Commissioner can be
contacted at: The Information Commissioner's Office, Wycliffe House, Water
Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire SK9 5AF or via their website at
[1]https://ico.org.uk/concerns/getting/.

Yours sincerely,

Jo Withey

Information Governance Officer

Cambridgeshire County Council

SH1001

Shire Hall

Castle Hill

Cambridge

CB3 0AP

01223 729164

[2]www.cambridgeshire.gov.uk
[3]www.cambridgeshire.net

 

The information in this email is confidential and may be legally
privileged. It is intended solely for the addressee. If you receive this
email by mistake please notify the sender and delete it immediately.
Opinions expressed are those of the individual and do not necessarily
represent the opinion of Cambridgeshire County Council. All sent and
received email from Cambridgeshire County Council is automatically scanned
for the presence of computer viruses and security issues. Visit
[4]www.cambridgeshire.gov.uk

References

Visible links
1. https://ico.org.uk/concerns/getting/
2. file:///tmp/www.cambridgeshire.gov.uk
3. file:///tmp/www.cambridgeshire.net
4. http://www.cambridgeshire.gov.uk/

Owen Boswarva left an annotation ()

"The Council has noted that the Open Government Licence stipulates two years ..."? What is Cambridgeshire talking about?

Robert Whittaker left an annotation ()

I tried complaining to the ICO about the Council's response to this request. Unfortunately the ICO does not regard the "purpose" I gave in the request as meeting the requirement of RoPSI 6(d). I was therefore advised to submit a fresh request, which I have now done at https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/r...

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