Jump to content

 
Photo

Legal matters

- - - - -

  • Please log in to reply
7 replies to this topic

#1
BEAVER

BEAVER

    Master Contributor

  • Validated Member
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 185 posts
  • Location:Middletown, NY
  • United States

Did anyone ever sued a map company for inaccurate information or some other reason. I never heard of any news on that subject. For a map maker-publisher, how do you protect your self? Lets say that I place a parking spot symbol on a private property that was unposted at the time or put a hiking trail on property that allowed hiking but no longer does after the map has been published. What about business names or location on the map. What about just symbols for campgrounds, gas stations, motels, restaurants. Do I have to get a signed permission from the owners?

Second problem is how do you protect the information on the map you made. As some of you know I'm working on a Fly Fishing map and so far I have two years of research and at least six more months more to go. I put over 20,000 miles on my truck driving around collecting data. Lets say, I publish the map and someone will just redraw it with all my information. How do I stop that.

I thought about putting some ghost parking spots or other made up data. In this case if someone decides to use my info and does not do the research on their own, they will end up with the same errors. I have over 400 parking spots on the map and 90 of them are under the trees where satellite images will not reveal the location.

#2
EcoGraphic

EcoGraphic

    Master Contributor

  • Links Moderator
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 241 posts
  • Location:Okanagan Valley, BC
  • Interests:landscape architecture,cartography,information architecture,wayfinding,landscape archaeology,cultural landscapes,sustainable design,visual journalism,travel writing,photography,illustration,languages
  • Canada

You should read this previous post:

Easter Eggs

It talks about putting fake data on maps to catch copiers.
Gillian Auld
EcoGraphic Design
www.EcoGraphic.ca

Design is the intermediary between information and understanding
Richard Grefe

#3
Hans van der Maarel

Hans van der Maarel

    CartoTalk Editor-in-Chief

  • Admin
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 3,882 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:The Netherlands
  • Interests:Cartography, GIS, history, popular science, music.
  • Netherlands

Did anyone ever sued a map company for inaccurate information or some other reason. I never heard of any news on that subject. For a map maker-publisher, how do you protect your self? Lets say that I place a parking spot symbol on a private property that was unposted at the time or put a hiking trail on property that allowed hiking but no longer does after the map has been published. What about business names or location on the map. What about  just symbols for campgrounds, gas stations, motels, restaurants.  Do I have to get a signed permission from the owners?


Well, one thing you should always do is put a little disclaimer on the map explaining that it was made with the highest degree of accuracy, but you cannot be held responsible for any omissions or errors. I'll leave the exact wording up to you. Obviously (but probabely not in America), this only holds true right up to the date of production. Any changes that happen afterwards can of course not be mapped.

I don't think you have to go and get permission from the owners to put a business on the map. After all, you're going to bring potential clients their way...

Second problem is how do you protect the information on the map you made. As some of you know I'm working on a Fly Fishing map and so far I have two years of research and at least six more months more to go. I put over 20,000 miles on my truck driving around collecting data. Lets say, I publish the map and someone will just redraw it with all my information. How do I stop that.

I thought about putting some ghost parking spots or other made up data. In this case if someone decides to use my info and does not do the research on their own, they will end up with the same errors. I have over 400 parking spots on the map and 90 of them are under the trees where satellite images will not reveal the location.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


That would work. Just build in a few irregularities that don't affect normal use of the map, but are instantly recognizable to you.
Hans van der Maarel - Cartotalk Editor
Red Geographics
Email: hans@redgeographics.com / Twitter: @redgeographics

#4
Nick Springer

Nick Springer

    CartoTalk Founder Emeritus

  • Moderator
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 939 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Crosswicks, NJ
  • Interests:Cartographic Design, Print Maps, Graphic Design, Web Development, Ultimate Frisbee
  • United States

Of course in America no amount of disclaimers can stop someone from suing you :)

You can get Error & Omission Insurance which would pay for any lawsuits resulting from mistakes. I have never really researched it though, so I don't know if it is cost effective, or useful.

Nick Springer

Director of Design and Web Applications: ALK Technologies Inc.
Owner: Springer Cartographics LLC


#5
Rob

Rob

    Legendary Contributor

  • Moderator
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 418 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Kailua, Hawaii
  • Interests:anything outside.
  • United States

Did anyone ever sued a map company for inaccurate information or some other reason.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


most definitely. lawsuits regarding map accuracy are not that uncommon. Those I've learned about mainly related to inaccuracy of aviation or nautical charts that resulted in loss of life. This doesn't seem to be an issue with your project, but you might have some mention of the potential for river conditions to change rapidly or provide the numbers, if there are any, for a weather or melting forcast etc.

As for mapping businesses: I wouldn't think you would need premission because that information already seems in the public domain. If you mispell the name or show the business in the wrong location, the owner might have some grounds to pursue it if they feel it is causing a decrease in their fisherman customers. But that just comes down to not screwing it up, which you won't. B)

rob

#6
JB Krygier

JB Krygier

    Key Contributor

  • Validated Member
  • PipPipPip
  • 52 posts
  • Location:Columbus OH
  • United States

Second problem is how do you protect the information on the map you made.
...
I thought about putting some ghost parking spots or other made up data. In this case if someone decides to use my info and does not do the research on their own, they will end up with the same errors.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


Map traps for copyright purposes certainly exist, but don't have much legal standing. Bottom line, you can't copyright facts! I am not a lawyer (altho some here are!), nor do I play one on TV, but I posted this to the Map Room blog awhile back:

Mark Monmonier’s article “Map Traps” in the July/August 2001 Mercator’s World discusses a US Supreme Court case, Feist v. Rural Telephone Co. (1991) that, more or less, ended the “legal clout” of map traps (at least in the US). In essence, the ruling said that copyright cannot be used to protect “collections of facts.” However, copyright does protect a particular original representation of those facts. Thus you can retrace (create a new representation of) a map (the facts) and not infringe on copyright, but you cannot reproduce (say a digital scan) the original map without infringing on copyright. Of course, this is complicated and various strategies can be engaged to protect maps and mapped data (see also Monmonier’s article “Originality Bites” Sept/Oct 2001 Mercator’s World). More info, from an older source, can be found at the “Proceedings Of The Conference On Law And Information Policy For Spatial Databases”, particularly the article by William Holland: http://www.spatial.m...pe/tempe94.html


john k.

#7
carto71

carto71

    Newbie

  • Validated Member
  • Pip
  • 2 posts
  • Location:Kailua, Hawaii
  • United States

Did anyone ever sued a map company for inaccurate information or some other reason. I never heard of any news on that subject.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>



#8
melon_mapper

melon_mapper

    Contributor

  • Validated Member
  • PipPip
  • 23 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Dayton, Nevada (east of Carson City)
  • Interests:Martial Arts-I am a 3rd degree Black Belt and run my own program through the local park and rec department<br>NASCAR<br>Footbal (Badgers and Packers)<br>My kids and my family<br>I was just intorduced to geocaching<br>
  • United States
Here is an interesting point that was made when I attended the Northern Nevada ESRI's user group meeting.

There is a battle going on between professional surveyors and the GIS community. Most states have something some state law based on something called Model law, which gives the surveyors the power of deterministic mapping versus representational mapping that most everyone else does. In the talk it was mentioned the URISA was trying to bridge the gap with surveyors and have come to a slight resolution.

Te basic point the speaker was making is that at least in Nevada unless you are a land surveyor is that you should put a note on your map stating the is a representational map and hasn't been verified by any land surveyor.\

I understand the disclaimers and being sued- WHen I started my karate studio and talked to a lawyer about waivers and such- he basically said waivers are about as useful as the paper they are on.

This may or may nor help- but I found it very interesting point of view.

John




0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users

-->