Originally Posted by Yorkshiretea
Some interesting points Rob, mostly about fixtures but a table is a table and a chart is chart, uncopyrightable in law regardless of how the data is collected, pick any sport you want they are all different and you can't copyright them as they are not seen as original works and that's how are they are defined in law.
Perhaps it may come down to that. Who really
knows? I know from experience with IP that nothing is 100% certain until the highest court in the land has ruled on that particular case. I don't think many want to go there
It depends on what the idea is really. Certainly I think there are valid concerns with data protection, sponsorship, correction and control of the data and it's ownership, which if not addressed with some forethought are going to create problems, that may torpedo the idea of having a global results site.
If the site just linked back to the original data without trying to collect and republish the data then it may solve both issues... the desire to have a site where you can find many results, and the desire for competition formats to keep control of their own data, sponsorship and data protection policies.
Placing the input and control into a 3rd party, aside from the raised issues, raises others, like what happens if the site goes down, or loses the data, or chooses one day not to continue. What if someone else comes along, and either does the same thing, or decides to offer cash or sponsorship, or buy the site out? What if the site decides to exclude a format?
As much as I welcome the sport getting wider attention, I think it's really important that competition formats take ownership of the assets they have created. The horse has bolted on a lot of fronts, but I think what's left does need the stable door at least to be in place even if it's chosen for it to be opened or left open.
Formats may wish to extend permission for others to use info, rules, kit etc but the basis for being able to protect it from abuse (not that there's any evidence of that) is important should things go wrong in the future. It's like contracts, they are often not needed if two parties handshake and continue on good terms. It's when things go pear shaped that it then becomes and important document to rely on.
When I set up this site, the reason was to expose the target shooting airgun scene to a wider audience, because i felt it was somewhat buried at the time, and could gain from shared resources. But the ownership remains with those that use them. If UKAHFT decide this isn't the place they want to be, we're not going to stand in their way for instance. Beyond that it was intended to be an access point to other resources, not replace them all. I also didn't want it to be commercially influenced. With that came some hard choices as to how to continue with that, but hopefully looking forward to what potential problems there may be, a lot of them have been avoided. By having a clear set of guidelines I can refer back to, it make a lot of the decisions easier. It doesn't always suit what could be considered personal gain. We've turned down direct sponsorship a few occasions, suggesting the potential sponsors direct their attentions directly to a competition format, which are then reflected back here. We've also not taken on the role of official forums for a couple of competition formats because we believe their audience was better served by development of their own resources. We've also had some formats leave this site for their own reasons, to return later and support it. No drama. There's no belief here that what is here is entirely owned by this site. It works because of those that take the time to contribute, and either morally or legally, we're not seeking to own/control/republish etc what we consider someone else's, even if it is debatable that it's free for the taking. If push comes to shove, apart from sales, users can edit their own posts, and UKAHFT have as much permissions as I do.
Just some forethought required. If you're going to do something big, be aware that the devil may well be in the detail. With the details sorted out I see no issue with collaborative projects, just as long as it's respected and noted in the conception that the contributions are owned by their contributors, and the benefits of the collaboration are the things that are shared in ownership, not the contribution. With that established it becomes so much easier to create something greater than the sum of it's parts, and no-one gets their nose out of joint because an element is withdrawn or added. But it does tend to require some discussion before the project goes live, otherwise there can sometimes be issues which can be hard to bottle once they've been released into the wild.