[whatwg] The truth about Nokias claims

Maciej Stachowiak mjs at apple.com
Fri Dec 14 14:56:09 PST 2007

On Dec 14, 2007, at 6:27 AM, Shannon wrote:

> Rhetorical question. The reason for 'should' in a standard (or  
> draft) is that it reflects what we (the public, the developers and  
> the majority) want but believe some vendors won't or can't   
> implement. It's an opt-out clause. According to OpenOffice it  
> appears 329 times in the current draft. Hardly a useless word! All  
> that is being discussed here is the desire to tell vendors they  
> 'should' implement OGG. Apparently Nokia and Apple don't feel that  
> way but are not happy to simply opt-out - they want EVERYBODY to opt- 
> out.

Corrections to this:

1) Apple representatives have stated that we are ok with the SHOULD  
clause remaining. (We do think it is better to remove it for now but  
we can live with it either way).

2) At the same time we are driving work to find a codec that could  
meet the qualifications to be a MUST (which may or may not end up  
being Ogg Theora but will certainly be royalty-free).

3) Absence of a SHOULD clause doesn't force anyone to opt out of  
implementing Ogg Theora. Those vendors that wish to do so remain free  
to implement Theora or any other codec. I don't think Mozilla or Opera  
will back off of their plans to do so.

> You and Dave have both accused me of 'bashing'. I think a more  
> appropriate (and less violent) word would be 'pointing'. I'm  
> pointing out how self-serving Apple and Nokia are.

Apple's goals are:

1) We don't want to significantly increase our risk of being sued for  
possibly billions of dollars.
2) We want to find a codec that everyone can implement (including open  
source implementations) which does not create the risk in #1.

You could argue that #1 is self-serving, since it is a risk that  
largely does not affect smaller corporations or individuals. However,  
I think it is a reasonable concern. And we are doing something  
constructive about it by working towards #2. The W3C will be  
coordinating further work to review available codecs.


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