R0UTE writes: The UK government has responded to a petition requesting that all new software created under the Timely Information to Citizens (TIC) project be created under an Open source licence despite the measly 322 signatures.
"The Government supports the principle that, where new software is being developed by the Timely Information to Citizens pilots, this should wherever possible be released under open source licence and available for use by other local authorities.
For many of the Timely Information to Citizens pilots, the focus is not on new software, but on how existing tools and techniques can be used to bring information together and present it in more useful and accessible ways. Several of the projects will utilise existing open source software to create new information sources and channels, and will share their experiences of doing so with other authorities.
Where the pilots will result in new software tools, ownership and intellectual property rights will usually remain with the individual local authorities. However, most of the authorities concerned have already made a commitment to make these tools available as open source software, or for use by their partner organisations, and we are working to secure the commitment of the remaining."
I found it interesting that many Local Authorities have already agreed to use and create Open Source softwhere wherever possible. However it does sound like there are a lot of get out clauses in the response.
R0UTE writes: A new petition has cropped up on the UK site for petitioning government. It is aimed at getting local councils that develop new software for the Timely Information to Citizens (TIC) project to release the code under an Open Source licence.
As the projects are funded by public money it makes sense to me that it is owned by the public and we therefore have the right to see the code produced by such a project. From the petition text:
"The Department for Communities and Local Government (CLG) is running a project called Timely Information to Citizens (TIC). As part of this project, several local authorities are being given funding totalling approximately £1m to develop software and web services to improve local information and service provision.
While CLG's aim is that these projects are incorporated into a "best practice toolkit", we ask the government to reduce duplication of effort and expense and make this software available for other users at the earliest opportunity by releasing each package on deployment under an OSI-approved open source licence.
Though we welcome these projects themselves, as citizens we cannot and do not support this substantial sum of public money being spent to create private, proprietary software."
An interesting idea for sure, but will the government take heed of this, I doubt it very much. Nevertheless I have signed, any other UK citizens willing to try and convince Gordon of this?