I just went to a talk by Erik Valgaeren, a Brussels lawyer, on the new European Union directive (2003/98) on harmonizing public sector information. as part of the Stanford Center for Internet and Society's lecture series. The directive aims to facilitate the re-use, rather than access, by both private and public sector bodies to public sector information. Apparently governments throughout Europe have had different laws defining public sector information and under what conditions that information may be accessed. According to the definition in the directive, public sector information is defined as information produced by the government. What I find interesting is how information that may be useful to the public, may not necessarily fall within this definition, and will therefore not be as accessible. One example is information held by private bodies that have taken over the tasks that governments used to fulfill (weather agencies etc). Another is the example of information held by non-governmental organisations - such as the South African History Archives - that may be realy useful if publicly available, but may not necessarily fall within the official definition of public domain materials.