March 8, 2011
Status of Public Sector Information in the United States
Timothy Vollmer, Creative Commons Policy Coordinator, has published State of Play: Public Sector Information in the United States [ePSI-plus]. The report examines US public sector information policy, the economic effects of open access to public data and recent developments relating to public data re-use.
From the executive summary:
The U.S. federal information framework is constructed primarily through legislation and regulatory policies, including the U.S. Copyright Act, Freedom of Information Act, Office of Management and Budget Circular A-130, and others. The U.S. federal framework is unique in that under Section 105 of the Copyright Act there exists no copyright protection for information created by the federal government. This policy typically does not extend to information created and disseminated at the state and local levels. At the state and local levels, there is a wide range of policy frameworks, and some rely on restrictive information management schemes in order to maintain control and in theory recuperate costs. However, some states and local entities have been proactively making PSI available.
U.S. federal PSI promotes economic activity because of the lack of intellectual property restrictions and non-adherence to strict cost recovery policies. Information created and shared by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), particularly weather information, stimulates economic activity - approximately $700 million annually - and leads to the creation of other value-added industries.
The U.S. has been active in disseminating and promoting the re-use of its public sector information. Three recent initiatives in the U.S. include Data.gov, the National Institutes of Health Public Access Policy, and the Trade Adjustment Assistance Community College and Career Training Grant Program. These and other projects show a groundswell in government and citizen interest in sharing and re-using PSI.
Thought your readers might enjoy knowing about my freedom of information blog, The Art of Access
Any publicity greatly appreciated and will be reciprocated!
Charles N. Davis
University of Missouri School of Journalism
Posted by: Charles Davis | Mar 10, 2011 6:07:02 AM