Our kind friends in the Office of Public Sector Information stole our thunder at Opentech. Amongst all the other interesting things going on they very quietly announced their new data unlocking service.
The proposition is very simple. If you have any problems accessing public information then you contact OPSI. The way their service works is:
- “You describe the public sector information asset you want unlocked for re-use, and post a request to the service. We’ll check through your request and if it’s OK (e.g. not a Freedom of Information request) we’ll post it here.
- Others can see your request and support it, either by adding a comment or by voting. The more support a request has, the better the chances of unlocking the information you want to re-use.
- We’ll contact the public sector information holder and see what can be done to unlock the information for re-use. To keep things simple, if the problem relates to an issue specifically covered by the Re-use of Public Sector Information Regulations or the Information Fair Trader Scheme, we’ll treat it accordingly – so you won’t need to make a separate complaint. We’ll post back our findings here.”
Not much more you can add to that list really. A fantastic development that is to be applauded.