Who owns information that’s freely available, but time-consuming to collect again?
That’s the problem as Google and Bing and others try to map the next frontier: the uncharted depths of the favelas in Rio.
Does the State own the data, even though they don’t have it charted yet? What about other explorers who have charted it already and who gave the map to the State? What about the criminal gangs that exercise dominion over the area, and who may want to be harder to find? What about the residents, or the shopkeepers?
“Google, Microsoft Expose Brazil’s Slums,” Wall Street Journal, September 26, 2014 B1. The rising availability of smartphones and internet access supports a need for being able to navigate even the slums. How do entrepreneurs monetize the data collected? Is the information worth more to Google than they are willing to pay?
Do Lewis & Clark still get royalties on their maps?