[whatwg] Fullscreen for HTML5 Video element

Ashley Sheridan ash at ashleysheridan.co.uk
Mon Mar 8 05:35:44 PST 2010

On Mon, 2010-03-08 at 13:31 +0000, Tim Hutt wrote:

> On 8 March 2010 13:16, Nils Dagsson Moskopp
> <nils-dagsson-moskopp at dieweltistgarnichtso.net> wrote:
> > Tim Hutt <tdhutt at gmail.com> schrieb am Mon, 8 Mar 2010 12:48:30 +0000:
> >
> >> 2010/3/8 Ashley Sheridan <ash at ashleysheridan.co.uk>
> >> > Also, I've never seen anything built in Flash that started up in
> >> > full-screen mode automatically. I had to trigger it explicitly
> >> > every time by an action from me.
> >>
> >> That was his point - despite the fact that it *can* be done in flash,
> >> it isn't. Hence the argument in the spec is invalid.
> >
> > I doubt anyone thought about annoying advertisments immediately when
> > popup technology came around. Still, popup blocking is widespread today.
> Yes that's exactly the point Gallantmon was trying to make. The popup
> API was created, people abused it, hence pop-up blockers. However, we
> have already seen that since the creation of flash's full-screen API,
> people haven't abused it. So there's no real argument for not
> including it in HTML5 video.
> You might say "But people might abuse it in the future and then we'd
> be stuck with it!!", but this isn't correct. Whereas we are somewhat
> stuck with popups, with HTML5 video you could always disable the API
> via a preference, and still access full-screen manually via the
> context menu.
> >> I don't really see what's wrong with having an API for fullscreen. If
> >> they want, user agents could have a preference to disable the
> >> full-screen API if people ever start doing annoying things.
> >
> > I don't really see what is wrong with not having an API. Users could
> > still use UA facilities, like they do now to have a web page display in
> > full screen mode.
> Yeah I don't think it is critical. I assume it is wanted so web sites
> (e.g. youtube) can display custom full-screen buttons.

Perhaps having the action of fullscreen triggered only by something the
user does, rather than allowing it to be done automatically. This
shouldn't be too hard to achieve, as browsers have been doing this for
ages with popup windows (hence why now you see popups triggered from
every single damn click on any part of a page!)

By doing this, you could essentially have the custom controls that you
want, and the user is under less threat of being abused by automatic
full-screen video that they don't want.

Don't forget that as soon as something becomes too annoying the user
agents will make efforts to make the users lives better. Popups are not
inherently evil and I've seen them used well and effectively before, but
the abuse they suffered has led to them being a feature that cannot be
relied upon. If full-screen video in HTML 5 is to avoid being misused,
then similar safeguards need to be in place. Just saying "well, it
hasn't happened to Flash yet" isn't a good enough reason to ignore the
potential for a problem to surface.


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