Public Sector Information defaults
|Jurisdiction||Reference (if given)||Response|
|Canada||NA||Copyright Act recognizes Crown Copyright and most provinces and the federal government have a "Queen's Printer" or a government printer (for Québec, where references to the Queen have mostly been eliminated from your government aparatus) in charge of dealing with reprint requests. These documents are covered by the Reprographic Rights Organisations (RROs) for the creation of cource-packs in schools and universities (don't get me started on this). There are some notable efforts to make data/documents available under some sort of flexible licensing scheme, such as:
http://geogratis.gc.ca/ - free access to (some) geospacial data from Canada. A notable exception to this are the postal (Canada's Zip) code master file, specially with electoral boundaries. Canada Post makes this available via a very expensive and restrictive license.
http://www.canlii.org/ - free access to primary legal materials (this is funded by the Federation of Law Societies of Canada and is managed by a research center at Université de Montréal). The Government has passed a decree via the Gazette of Canada (for federal statutes at least) allowing copies of statutes to be made: http://www.canlii.org/en/ca/laws/regu/si-97-5/latest/si-97-5.html
There are a hodge-podge of other regimes, mostly with special terms and conditions, for other types of government data. But GeoGratis and CanLII are the two most notable examples.
In sum, most everything that can still be protected by crown copyright still is, but there are notable efforts to make some content available freely/openly ("libre" in French).
|Chile||NA||In Chile all the works made by public functionaries (informs, judicial sentences, software, database and text of law, for example) are not in public domain but they are protected by copyright law, where is the State the copyright holder.
Nevertheless, there a brand new access to information law where makes accessible a lot of information from the public institutions for the citizen. Of course, in that sense, what is public in the sense of the access is not quite the same that the copyright access to copy and reuse of those materials.
|Colombia||Law 23 of 1982||The general rule is protection but there are a couple of exceptions to express authorization for certain reproductions according to the Law 23 of 1982:
The following works are protected, but it is allowed to reproduce them provided that the copy is an exact reproduction of the official version:
Constitution, laws, treaties, orders, municipal ordinances, agreements, regulations, all kind of administrative acts and judicial decisions
It is possible to publish in the printed press, TV or broadcast as news the political speeches delivered in public and statements made in public in the court, or any other judicial fora or before any public authority, this apply also to conferences, speeches, sermons, lectures given in public provided that no reserve has been done as to it´s property, This works can not be compiled without the author's approval.
|Italy||NA||Not applicable. There is no PSI provision in Italian law (so far). The usual laws apply, even if the rights holder is a public entity.|
|Japan||NA||What is not protected by copyright are the following:
|Netherlands||NA||Public acts are exempt from copyright, but they're just a part of PSI (which is not generally exempt from copyright).|
|Poland||NA||The following types of works (among several others) are not subject to copyright:
The first two items correspond directly to public sector information. Unfortunately, the concept of "official documents and materials" is ambiguous, leading to uncertainty regarding copyright status of many government documents - for instance those prepared by external institutions / experts.
|Slovenia||NA||According to Slovenian PSI legislation:
a) Access to PSI protected by copyright is granted. b) Reproduction of copyright PSI is not allowed. This is the case also if the copyright owner is a public entity (e. g. the government). This will most probably change soon and reproduction of copyrighted PSI will only be impossible in case the copyright owner is a third person (not a public entity). c) Re-use of copyright information is not allowed only, if the copyright owner is a third person (not the entity obliged to give PSI but someone else).
In accordance with our copyright legislation, official legislative, administrative and judicial texts are not copyright protected and can, therefore, be freely used.
|South Africa||Section 12(8) of the South African Copyright Act 1978||"(8) (a) No copyright shall subsist in official texts of a legislative, administrative or legal nature, or in official translations of such texts, or in speeches of a political nature or in speeches delivered in the course of legal proceedings, or in news of the day that are mere items of press information."|
|South Korea||NA||No work which falls under any of the following subparagraphs shall be protected
1. Constitution, Acts, treaties, orders, municipal ordinances and municipal rules;
2. Bulletins, public notifications, directives and others similar to them which are issued by the State or local governments; 3. Judgments, decisions, orders, or adjudications of courts, as well as resolutions and decisions made by the administrative appeals procedures, or other similar procedures; 4. Compilations or translations of those as referred to in subparagraphs 1 through 3 which are produced by the State or local governments; and
And political speeches delivered in public and statements made in public in the court, the National Assembly or local councils may be utilized in some way or other: Provided, That the speeches and statements of the same author are utilized after compilation, this shall not apply.
|Taiwan||Article 9, Taiwan Copyright Act||The following items shall not be the subject matter of copyright:
1.The constitution, acts, regulations, or official documents. 2.Translations or compilations by central or local government agencies of works referred to in the preceding subparagraph. 3.Slogans and common symbols, terms, formulas, numerical charts, forms, notebooks, or almanacs. 4.Oral and literary works for news reports that are intended strictly to communicate facts. 5.Test questions and alternative test questions from all kinds of examinations held pursuant to acts or regulations.
The term "official documents" in the first subparagraph of the preceding paragraph includes proclamations, text of speeches, news releases, and other documents prepared by civil servants in the course of carrying out their duties.
|United States||Section 105 of the U.S. Copyright Act of 1976 (as amended)||Subject matter of copyright: United States Government works:
Copyright protection under this title is not available for any work of the United States Government, but the United States Government is not precluded from receiving and holding copyrights transferred to it by assignment, bequest, or otherwise.
|Other Information on PSI||National Academy Press||"The Socioeconomic Effects of Public Sector Information on Digital Networks" (in which the status of PSI usage in some countries can be found), available online at:
Contact at The National Academies: Paul F. Uhlir (Rapporteur, U.S. National Committee for CODATA; Director, NRC Board on Research Data and Information)