Thursday, November 11, 2010

Opendata @ Trafikanten, answer strategies

Obviously (and unfortunately) Trafikanten isn't willing to cooperate to open up their data.

I have to answer them within about 10 days and I am left with different strategies:

  1. abandon
  2. confrontation
  3. negotiate
  4. workaround

The first question one has to ask oneself is of course whether to abandon or not. Is this worth our time? I will have to ponder that.

The second option is go on with the confrontation. It's clear to say that now, using lawyers to defend themselves, Trafikanten isn't currently very open for negotiation. Hard to say who caused the situation, and it's not even important. It's just a fact. I am pretty sure I can find arguments to counter their answer, or even find things that as a public company they are obliged to do causing them problems. I am not very interested in that, and I would prefer negotiation/cooperation.

Cooperation, a WIN/WIN solution would have been the best. Making Trafikanten truly a leader in open data in Norway, finding a gradual path that leads for opening their data little by little. It might be possible. But right now I don't know. The tone is set and probably hard to change and they've made it clear they didn't want to help small companies nor their users. But I am optimist by nature, so why not?

As for the last solution, workaround, I am also sure I can find a technical solution that solves my issue independently of them. Trafikanten has a public API, and I can probably build the DB of the interesting data based on it. It might be completely inefficient, maybe illegal, incomplete, but I will sure be able to gather part of this data.

1 comment:

  1. Your timing could not have been better. Today, Regjeringen published this press release: explicitly mentions public transportation.

    Furthermore, the report about public data from Teknologirådet ( also mentions Trafikanten in several places, questioning their policies.

    This is a policy issue, and I'm quite sure they are in violation of Norwegian law ("Viderebruksdirektivet") since Ruter is owned by Oslo and Akershus Fylkeskommune; although IANAL.