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We are a non-profit organisation developing a platform to share accessibility information of POIs. Although similar to Wheelmap it collects completely different and more complex data for various kind of disabilities. The data is crowd sourced by our users with the help of a Smartphone-App. The data is stored in our database. Everybody can search and use the data for free though the data is not (yet) under an open data licence.

To simplify the data acquiring process, we would like to suggest POIs in his suroundings to the user by searching them in OSM with Nominatim. The user can then select a POI and add the data we want to collect. For this to work we need to store the coordinates, the name and the place_id of the POI in our own database.

Is this allowed with data from OSM? What are the legal consequences, do we have to release our data under an odbl as well?

I read the licence information of OSM on but I am not quite sure if I understood it correctly...

Thanks for your help!

asked 22 Oct '16, 22:19

acgjheeb's gravatar image

accept rate: 0%


Legal or not, if the data your users add is of interest for OSM, it's certainely not fair.

(23 Oct '16, 18:21) yvecai

please keep in mind that OSM ids are not stable. id of the POI can be changed at any time, e.g. when a node is replaced with an area

(24 Oct '16, 06:01) escada

@yvecai We are willing to licence our data under ODbl as well and for example add a tag with a link to our data to the places in OSM. Due to the complexity of our data model I do not see how it could be completely integrated in OSM in a feasible way. We do want to give back to the community as much as possible and are open for suggestions.

(24 Oct '16, 20:03) acgjheeb

@escada You do mean the place_id? Thanks for the useful hint! I will keep that in mind!

(24 Oct '16, 20:07) acgjheeb

indeed, if you use the id of an OSM object as your "place_id", they are not edged in stone and can change over time.

As for donating data back. Suppose there is a restaurant in OSM without wheelchair=yes/no information, it would be nice that you could "donate" that data based on your more elaborate data.

(25 Oct '16, 04:20) escada

For authoritative answers (or at least for as-authoritative-as-you-can-get answers), email

What you are planning to do is certainly allowed, however it will most likely trigger the ODbL share-alike clause meaning that if you publicly use your data which is derived from OSM, you will need to make it available under ODbL on request. And of course you need to attribute the source.

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answered 22 Oct '16, 22:34

Frederik%20Ramm's gravatar image

Frederik Ramm ♦
accept rate: 23%

Thanks very much for you extremly quick answer! I have just written an email as you have suggested.

(22 Oct '16, 22:40) acgjheeb

I've got an answer from the email suggested by @Frederik Ramm.

It suggests to read the following pages:

Roughly speaking the OSM data can be used with my data if we do not use accessibility data from OSM which we also collect via our website. The OSM data will remain licenced under ODbL no matter how they are extracted.

The exact details depend on the specific use case.

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answered 06 Nov '16, 17:36

acgjheeb's gravatar image

accept rate: 0%

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question asked: 22 Oct '16, 22:19

question was seen: 3,010 times

last updated: 06 Nov '16, 17:36

NOTICE: is no longer in use from 1st March 2024. Please use the OpenStreetMap Community Forum