Dealing with proprietary/copyrighted data

Hi Mappers,
first time here so… be merciful… :slight_smile:

I’ve just been asked to map and make navigable a small (but quite interesting) publicly-accessible but privately-owned area. To be more detailed, I’ve been asked to:

a) Make available to the public the map of this area (a georeferenced raster image)
b) Make available to the public a set of vector/raster layers containing the feature markers (roads, houses, etc.)
c) Make this stuff available to the public by mean of a web site (it does not matter if it will be a public one, like OSM’s, or a privately-owned one)
d) Make this stuff available to the public by mean of a Mobile application (Android, iPhone and others)

(BTW, at the moment, I’m looking at OSMAnd (Android-only) or Navit (Multiplatform) as the possible mobile client.)

As you can see, this project would be perfect for OSM but, unfortunately… at the moment the raw data are still copyrighted. Moreover, we are not even sure that the raw data will actually be made open (that is: covered by a license compatible with OSM). As you surely know very well, getting the required authorizations is a long and complicated process.

As a consequence, it seems that the only two ways to meet the customer’s requirements would be these:
a) Serving* all of the data* (both the OSM planet and the proprietary data) from our own WMS/TMS server
b) Using a TMS/WMS server as a OSM proxy and using it to mix the OSM data with the proprietary ones.
Of course, I would not be particularly happy to set up and maintain a map server just for this specific project (and just to cope with its specific problems).

So, before accepting this job I would be happy to hear you opinion about a few topics. Here my doubts:

  1. Would it be considered ethical to mix OSM maps/data with proprietary ones at the client level (that is: at the web server level and/or at the mobile application one)?
  2. Do I really have to run my own WMS/TMS server to dish out the proprietary data?
  3. Or, as a simpler alternative, could I just load my copyrighted maps (raster images) and my layers (vector/raster images) from the device’s local disk (once they have been generated/compiled somehow) and mix them up with the free data coming from the OSM’s server? Of course this would require a client program (Navit? OSMAnd?) able to perform this mix-up on the user’s device.

I’m not even sure that this mix-up would be technically feasible. What do you think? What do you suggest?

Thanks in advance

I can’t really comment on what’s easier for you to implement from a technical point of view, but you can avoid a lot of legal issues by combining raster images instead of raw data. The share alike licenses used by OSM (particularly the ODbL that will be used for OSM data in the future) impose some rather burdensome restrictions on mixing sources at the data stage.