[whatwg] <video>

Mike Wilcox mike at mikewilcox.net
Sun Jun 20 14:07:56 PDT 2010

>>On Mon, 8 Mar 2010, balachandar muruganantham wrote:>
>> I have heard from people that there have been a discussion on supporting 
>> the fullscreen mode for HTML5 video element. can anyone share the 
>> information on the conclusion we arrived at? i searched in the archive 
>> but i could not come to any conclusion.

>On March 25th, Ian Hickson then said:
>The conclusion was that it is a presentational issue and therefore should 
>be handled in one of the CSSOM specs. Unfortunately we don't have anyone 
>who has the bandwidth to edit a spec to specify how to make things go 
>full-screen. WebKit is experimenting with some APIs in this space, I 
I hope it's not minded if I weigh in on this topic as I feel strongly about it.

It's very important that the HTML5 spec address developers' needs without crippling their abilities due to unfounded or incorrect security implementations. This is the problem we've been dealing with in regard to the file input uploaders for years, trying to simply apply a little CSS style to them.

Adobe has blocked inappropriate use of fullscreen by tying that functionality to the click of a button. It can't be done onload or programmatically, it requires a user's interaction. The HTML5 spec can provide the same thing for fullscreen video. It's no different than the security used for HTML file inputs – you can't open a a File Browse Dialog, the user must click a button.

I sincerely hope developers' needs aren't made secondary in such debates. While I appreciate proper browser security, in some cases it forces us to just look for workarounds to circumvent the security. The lack of fullscreen is a serious issue for us as we deal with clients and superiors who ask us to replace the Flash video player with an HTML5 video player... only to have us go back to them and say "Here is the cool player with custom controls... sorry, you can't do fullscreen though, it's not allowed". The obvious response to this is "Flash can, why can't HTML5?" and "well, let's just use Flash then."

Finally, in reference to the CSSOM Ian, I'm not sure this is what you are referring to, but another solution to the fullscreen issue is if the browser default controls could be styled with CSS. This would be a real win-win, as we could have our secure fullscreen button (as implemented in Webkit but not Firefox strangely) and also have a faster path to custom controls.

While I would guess this would be a CSSOM issue, it seems that it would still be a recommendation by WHATWG.

Mike Wilcox
mike at mikewilcox.net

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