The confusion of the Public Data Corporation

This press release was posted by the Land Registry yesterday, and it’s left me a bit confused.

  • What are these Public Data Organisations (PDOs) the Government is creating? I had never heard mention of these before.
  • The Met Office, Ordnance Survey, and Land Register are moving into this PDO? Why?
  • The Land Registry was part of the Ministry of Justice? Really? 
  • The Land Registry will be part of the Department for Business, Innovations and Skills – that seems like an odd combination.
  • Why are there no links to any of the supporting materials mentioned in the press release. The “previous work on the Feasibility Study”? The “findings reported to ministers”?
  • Why was this not announced earlier than on the day it actually happened?
  • Why is the enabling legislation coming into force after the change happens – why was it not made and in force in advance of this move?

So…the moneymaking Government departments are being hived off into a mysterious body called a PDO, which there are no links to the justification for, there’s no information on what it will do, and a consultation will happen “in the summer” (we’re halfway through it now, so they’d better move fast!) which will establish “membership, structure, and commercial strategy” based on the consultation, “later this year”…this just seems a bit chaotic, vague, and thrown together!

And these new PDOs.. they sound like they’re all going to be commercial enterprises, to exploit the data the Government agencies produce…what does this mean for the public trying to access this data?

Anyone know more about this stuff?

Author: Jennie

Law, libraries, books, crafts, and general geekery.

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