[whatwg] *AGAINST* Removal of ogg from spec

Ryan McLean ryanm at ninet.org
Tue Dec 11 08:21:28 PST 2007

After wasting what seemed like an eternity reading what can only be
described as pure and unabridged dribble from Nokia. Before I continue to
write this responce I would just like to thank Nokia for wasting 20mins of
my life. 

I must express my disappointment that w3c is caving to pressure to remove
an essentially "free" codec from the specification that was at best a
recommendation, after all it said *should* not *must*, as to the preferred

In fact while we are here, supporting the removal of things beneficial to
the end user, perhaps with HTML5 we should recommend that the html code be
compiled so that users cannot read it as that would benefit a few minority
companies that have done clever things with js/html/css and want to hide
those things as trade secrets/IP.

Maybe Nokia would be as good as to point out which codec is better? wmv?
divx? mov?

My argument in favour of a "free" codec is that all browsers could ship
with it, without fear of being sued, this would allow users to watch/listen
to clips/movies/music out of the box without scouring the Internet for
codec XYZ for a once off use. That is not to say that the use of OGG should
be explicit, of course anyone should be able to choose which codec they use
to display their clips but for people just beginning (and even experts) it
would be nice to have a single codec that is an implied standard. This way
they don't have to worry "will xyz be able to watch my funny 5min clip" as
they know that IE, FF, (er.. whats that mac browser called again?), etc
will play ogg "out of the box" (so to speak).

A good question that jumps to mind though is who are Apple / Nokia to tell
anyone what should be a web standard, surely 2 companies that (in the
scheme of things) aren't even that big (I will concede that Nokia are the
market leaders in phones, but Apple are 2nd to who?? oh yes MS??), I would
also point of that of the two companies opposing this one (apple) isn't
known for its interoperability (propriety hardware/software, DRM locked
music downloads that only play on apple products). 

Really if *anyone* should have any sway here (and I personally think that
no 1 or 2 companies should) it should be Google lets face it they are the
largest power on the Internet whether you love em/hate em/dont know who
they are..

Another is what is Nokia thinking? (what am I on about you ask.. read on my
  Nokia build phones (yea I am dead smart), phones are only just getting to
the point that they are decent enough to browse the web on but (yes i  
said "but") there is no standard in place for them and lets be honest here,
if a phone user comes across a divx clip its safe to say they won't be able
to watch it.. Why? well phones generally aren't know for their ability to
download new plug-ins (eg codecs). Now say we imply that ogg should be the
default/standard for web AV (audio/visual) then all phones come with it
built in and Nokia don't have to pay anyone royalties to use it, and mister
end user (the guy that usually gets shafted by DRM and other
incompatibilities) can browse and watch ogg clips on all the HTML5
compliant pages till his little heart is content. 

So we must ask ourselves why would Nokia want to get rid of a standard
(that's not even set in stone) that is likely to mean they have to pay out
more money per unit (thereby pushing prices of end user appliances up)?
Sounds like they know something we don't (no I am not a conspiracy
theorist/paranoid nutter), I just find it strange that a company that
stands to lose profit margin would take such a stance..

Well thats my word count for the next month or so.. and a case of RSI to go
with it.. I just hope that others here believe that these are vaild points
and wont stand for companies forcing bad decisions upon the rest of us.


Ryan McLean

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