18 July 2011

Data-hugging excuses

(library dr0ide)
Andrew Stott (@DirDigEng) gave this sample of "data hugging" excuses in his presentation at OKCON 2011 on Implementing an Open Data programme within government:
  • It's held separately by n different organisations and we can't join it up
  • It will make people angry and scared without helping them
  • It is technically impossible
  • We do not own the data
  • The data is just too large to be published and used
  • Our website cannot hold files this large
  • We know the data is wrong
  • We know the data is wrong, and people will tell us when it's wrong
  • We know the data is wrong, and we will waste valuable resources inputting the corrections people send us
  • People will draw superficial conclusions from the data without understanding the wider picture
  • People will construct league tables from it
  • It will generate more Freedom of Information requests
  • It might be combined with other data to identify individuals/sensitive information
  • It will cost too much to put it into a standard format
  • Our IT suppliers will charge us a fortune to do an ad hoc extract