On 26/04/2013 1:28 PM, "Nick Dowling" <nick_dowl...@hotmail.com> wrote:
>
> It would be worth considering whether the ABS is actually funded to
provide the IT infrastructure and staff time needed to set up and maintain
arrangements to allow people to download the entire Census dataset (which I
suspect would be a fairly unusual requirement). In my experience ABS staff
are pretty keen to have people use their data -

An anecdote: At a BarCampCanberra a few years ago (2010?) there was a
session on open data and Gov 2.0. Someone from the ABS (not a spokesperson)
was in the session and said that the ABS wanted to make data available, but
in sets to be used for particular purposes - they didn't want purple to
have access to the whole thing lest the data be misused. Steve Collins
(a.k.a. @trib) and others made it clear that they disagreed, and why.

That said, things may have changed in ABS, and I don't know how
representative those views were in the first place. But it's a safe bet
that ABS has some people pushing for wide open access and others trying to
restrict access, to some degree.

Chris

> the problem is that they're permanently short of money for non-essential
tasks and need to cover at least some of their costs for non-core business
as they're not funded for it.
>
> Regards,
> Nick
>
> > From: p858sn...@gmail.com
> > Date: Thu, 25 Apr 2013 20:34:17 +1000
> > To: wikimediaau-l@lists.wikimedia.org
> > Subject: [Wikimediaau-l] Fwd: [---] Australian Census Data Released
Under CC License, But Official Site Tries To Make It Hard To Download
>
> >
> > From a private list I'm on, Thought some of you guys may be interested
> >
> > ---------- Forwarded message ----------
> > From: MW <---@gmail.com>
> > Date: Thu, Apr 25, 2013 at 8:05 PM
> > Subject: [---] Australian Census Data Released Under CC License, But
> > Official Site Tries To Make It Hard To Download
> > To: --- <--->
> >
> >
> >
http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20130421/02575922789/australian-census-data-released-under-cc-license-official-site-tries-to-make-it-hard-to-download.shtml
> > >
> > > by Glyn Moody
> > >
> > > Mon, Apr 22nd 2013 8:09pm
> > >
> > > The whole point about adopting Creative Commons licenses is to make
it easier for people to share and use works released under them. Sometimes,
though, you get the impression that certain organizations adopting these
licenses would rather that didn't happen, as in the following case from
Australia, reported by IT News:
> > >
> > > The Australian Bureau of Statistics has released the latest census
data for free under a Creative Commons license but appears to be steering
people towards a $250 mailed out DVD rather than making it easy to download
the information directly over the internet.
> > >
> > > Programmer and freelance journalist Grahame Bowland who first noticed
it, said the government agency is going to great lengths to discourage
people from downloading the files directly by dint of a convoluted site
layout and Javascript functions that obfuscate file paths.
> > >
> > > The post then goes on to describe in detail some of the attempts to
make it difficult to download all of the census data, including a
hard-to-find registration page, a complex matrix of download options, and
Javascript code that does stuff like this:
> > >
> > > // Function: guidGenerator
> > >
> > >
> > > // Description:returns a pseudo-random GUID
> > >
> > >
> > > //This is appended to a url for 2 reasons
> > >
> > >
> > > //1. to make the URL unique, so that the browser always gets it and
doesn't use a cached version
> > >
> > >
> > > //2. to make a URL look like its got a unique key, in a naive attempt
to fool a not-so-wily hacker
> > >
> > >
> > > //into thinking they can't download a datapack directly if they know
the URL pattern, because they
> > >
> > >
> > > //need a unique key.
> > >
> > > Notice how anyone who might want to download datapacks directly is
branded a hacker. That's a worrying attitude, since it seems to equate
people who want to take advantage of the CC license to explore the census
without jumping through the site's hoops as shady subversives (I doubt the
comment used the term "hacker" in its more positive sense).
> > >
> > > As the IT News story suggests, the motivation for this obfuscation
seems to be to encourage people to pay AU $250 (about US $257) for the DVD
version instead. To save others from having to deal with the unhelpful Web
site, Bowland generously stumped up the $250 himself, and made the full
census database freely available as a torrent, as is perfectly legal under
the CC-BY license. This shows perfectly why it is pointless trying to make
it hard for people to download content that is CC licensed: once anyone has
obtained a copy, they can then make it available in a more convenient form,
neatly by-passing forlorn attempts to control something that has been set
free forever.
> >
> > _______________________________________________
> > Wikimediaau-l mailing list
> > Wikimediaau-l@lists.wikimedia.org
> > https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimediaau-l
>
> _______________________________________________
> Wikimediaau-l mailing list
> Wikimediaau-l@lists.wikimedia.org
> https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimediaau-l
>
_______________________________________________
Wikimediaau-l mailing list
Wikimediaau-l@lists.wikimedia.org
https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimediaau-l

Reply via email to