License: How can I make money?


Do I have to show/open all my sources/source codes when I write an app using OSM?

If I write a commercial Application that makes it’s own navigation and ‘just’
shows maps of OSM - how can I protect my app from being copied from others
who then just go and copy my source code and then sell my app for maybe nothing - for free?

I don’t understand that license/licenses in that way.

Thanx for helping!

No, OpenStreetMap’s license only affects data and works directly derived from that data (such as binary data files containing map data or rendered map images). Software working with OSM data or OSM map tiles is not limited by the license: that software can be published under any license you want, including proprietary closed-source licenses.

The license only affects your app insofar as it will have to provide attribution - that is, have to tell users that you are using OpenStreetMap data, and that they can reuse that data under the conditions of OSM’s license, which is currently CC-by-SA 2.0. That attribution should include a link to, and ideally While the attribution doesn’t need to be visible to users at all times, it should be easily found. Where to place it depends on the user interface conventions for the platform you are developing for; some variant of an “about” box is one of the options.

Not directly related to the license, but I assume that with “show maps of OSM”, you mean that you will set up a server that delivers said maps to your customers, at least once you have a significant number of users? Directly using OSM’s server resources is associated with additional restrictions beyond those of the data’s license.

Now I understand.
Thank you very much!!!