[whatwg] Removal of Ogg Vorbis and Theora

Jérôme Marchand adressebidon3032 at hotmail.com
Tue Dec 11 07:54:25 PST 2007

Please, anybody, tell me it's not true.Ogg Vorbis/Theora is perfect for web applications. We need to suport those. Is there anybody else than me that realise it cost 0.75$ US to of patents licensing LEGALLY have an MP3 decoder? I devellop for embedded applications, and it cost 15000$ Just to ship around 100 Units with a MP3 software Encoder. Ogg and Theora does a comparable cost but are free. I still can't imagine why anybody would retract those two great standarts from HTML5, unless they have codecs they what royalties from!)-Jerome Marchand========================From: Manuel Amador
To: whatwg at whatwg
Subject: Removal off Ogg technology: *preposterous*

Allow me to be the voice of the small Web developer -- which I consider to be
the foundation of the World Wide Web.

In reference to:

The recent removal of the mention of Ogg in HTML5 and the subsequent
replacement of its paragraph with the weasel-worded paragraph that would make
Minitrue bust their collective shirt buttons in pride:

<p class=”big-issue”>It would be helpful for interoperability if all+
browsers could support the same codecs. However, there are no known+  codecs
that satisfy all the current players: we need a codec that is+  known to not
require per-unit or per-distributor licensing, that is+  compatible with the
open source development model, that is of+  sufficient quality as to be
usable, and that is not an additional+  submarine patent risk for large
companies. This is an ongoing issue+  and this section will be updated once
more information is+  available.</p>

is a preposterous and gross mischaracterization of fact (dare I say lie).
At the very least, it’s FUD.

It pains me to state what is and has always been public knowledge, and is
being intentionally ignored just to “get the spec published”:

- The Xiph developers were extremely zealous and almost fiduciarily diligent
in researching all possible patent threats to Vorbis technology, and for more
than a year they found none — they even did the research *before* beginning
to code, explicitly to avoid submarine patents.  I know, because I was
subscribed to their mailing list and read status updates of this research,
practically at the start of the project.  I also know that big-name software
houses and media players manufacture products with Vorbis technology,
and none of them have been sued.  It’s been what, seven years now?
- The Theora codec has had its patents practically relinquished by On3 with a
perpetual royalty-free license.
- Ogg and its audio/video codec technologies are the ONLY free software media
technologies with implementations widely available on all consumer computing
platforms — from WM codecs to Linux DLLs, passing through the entire range
of hardware (floating-point and fixed-point) and OSes.
- Without guaranteed Ogg support (whose integration in user agents I think I
already established to be sort of a weekend-level junior programmer project
at NO COST, due to the ready availability of the technology in all
platforms), authors *will be* forced to use patent-encumbered technology.
Remember MP3? Well, with HTML5 it’s 1997 all over again.

Ian, revert.  This compromise on basic values is unacceptable, *whatever* the
practical reasons you have deemed to compromise for.  If you don’t revert,
you will be giving us independent authors the shaft.  And we will remember it
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