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Open Data

Open data is information available for anyone to use and share. The data can be used for any purpose without restrictions, except to attribute it to its source. Content must be in a public domain and machine-readable form to qualify as open data. Copyrights, patents, and other intellectual property rights do not apply to open data. However, some organizations have licenses to explain how the data can be used. Also, open data sometimes refers to content shared outside of an organization and used for purposes other than intended.

What Small and Midsize Businesses Need to Know About Open Data

Small and midsize businesses can use open data to research different topics. For example, companies often use photos and videos under Creative Commons (CC) licenses. They can also search statistics in U.S. Small Business Administration datasets. Datasets can be found for finance, science, the environment, and many other areas.

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