Ohio Court Raises Issues Around Geodata Intertwined with Copyrighted Software

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On Thursday March 7 the Ohio Supreme Court ruled on a whether a county engineer correctly responded to a Public Records Act request related to geospatial Data. The engineer offered the data with a $2000 fee to the requestor. The Court ruled the action was valid because the data were “intertwined with a copyright-protected software program” and the fee was to separate them out. This decision prompted discussions about the nature of public records, of appropriate GIS software and data formats for government use and the role of consultants.

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