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Links for 2006-11-18

4 replies on “Links for 2006-11-18”

Deeply cool indeed, but sadly not totally public domain. In the UK (according to research I did last year), your postcode remains the intellectual property of the Royal Mail, who grant you a non-exclusive licence to use it solely for the purposes of sending and receiving things through the post via the Royal Mail. So, even if you compile your own list, as far as I can determine, it’s still a list of stuff owned by them.

Our legal advice was that you can’t copyright a postcode, as it’s not big enough.
You can trademark a postcode, if you want to. Just pay the filing fee for each one. (Royal mail haven’t done this.)
The royal mail’s collection of postcodes to location will also be covered by a database right. However, we are perfectly allow to go and generate a new database, and licence it how we want, as long as we never extract any data from their database.
So, we do think we can give away the data as public domain.

It’s not strictly about copyright or trademarks in the legal senses. It’s about intellectual property. Personally, I’m all in favour of Royal Mail losing their grip on this – willingly or otherwise. Maybe in just a few months from now all the postcode nerds can unite and rise up! I mean, we’re really not that far away… compare this map (from the PAF) with this one (from

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