You are going to have to explain this one to me. For one thing, you have satellite Bing with a copyright notice as part of the mapping. In the “bigger picture,” all information is built from other information. What is important is citation to support a point in the academic sense, or to give credit when, say, quoting a source. Noting a fact learned from, say, an encyclopedia or learned from TV does not violate copyright or trademark. Noting a the location of a star from a star chart is another pretty good example, as all are commerical products and hence copyrighted.
Then there is the tremendous latitude supported by “fair use,” and I need not go down that path as everybody is familiar with it. So my question from your response is why are you over-protecting information? With my experience from the Wikipedia, the reason *could *be that this project intends what the Wikipedia founder intended, which is to create a commercial venture from it, such as the exceedingly advertising-obnoxious Wikia was created from the Wikipedia (and other similar mediawiki cites such as Camerapedia). If this site is the end unto which it is claimed, that is for the universal benefit humankind, then why not take advantage of fair use?
Then there is this:
This is to say that all maps preceding GPS are irrelevant, such as the US geodetic maps – please. What about the explorers that used a magnetized needle on a cork – they found their ways around pretty well and mapped the coasts with alarming accuracy when the only thing they could determine with certainty was latitude.
I know my trails because I hike them, which is a purely analog knowledge. Then I can find the exact locations of trails by looking at satellite images if the growth is not too great or there is no cloud cover – or I can use a pre-GPS geodetic map and get the marking close enough so that anyone using the map will not get lost. The accuracy difference is between 5 or 10 feet and less than one foot. In practice, and for the apparent purpose of this site from my reading by it’s promoters (which is to promote human well-being) the 5 or 10 feet accuracy is adequate and in some cases may be preferable to give an analog representation that will more clearly differentiate between, say, trails when the line thickness is greater than the geographic difference. The goal of a map is to improve the situation for the person on the ground – this is the art of map making and, in my opinion, it has not been replaced, or even improved upon, by digital map making. What has happened is that traditional map-making (which I define as pre-digital, ie pre-GPS) is that it (like the pure sounds of analog and vacuum tube sound) is being replaced by something touted as better but is less beneficial in practice. The advantage is that the material is more share-able – but that is not happening either because of inexplicable road blocks such as, for instance, the that “if you don’t have a GPS, then you’re unlikely to know the coordinates of things.”
As I am trying to communicate, this requires a considerable investment which, so far, is making old-school hand-drawn mods to paper maps a far better medium (then scanned and uploaded with HTML, which, fortunately supports old-school solutions). If OSM is being promoted for a universally-beneficial purpose, then it needs to meet that standard, which requires a bunch of efforts including support for, if not reconstruction of, the fine art of map making.