Linked by Eugenia Loli on Sat 1st May 2010 22:17 UTC
Legal We've all heard how the h.264 is rolled over on patents and royalties. Even with these facts, I kept supporting the best-performing "delivery" codec in the market, which is h.264. "Let the best win", I kept thinking. But it wasn't until very recently when I was made aware that the problem is way deeper. No, my friends. It's not just a matter of just "picking Theora" to export a video to Youtube and be clear of any litigation. MPEG-LA's trick runs way deeper! The [street-smart] people at MPEG-LA have made sure that from the moment we use a camera or camcorder to shoot an mpeg2 (e.g. HDV cams) or h.264 video (e.g. digicams, HD dSLRs, AVCHD cams), we owe them royalties, even if the final video distributed was not encoded using their codecs! Let me show you how deep the rabbit hole goes.

UPDATE: Engadget just wrote a reply to this article. The article says that you don't need an extra license to shoot commercial video with h.264 cameras, but I wonder why the license says otherwise, and Engadget's "quotes" of user/filmmaker indemnification by MPEG-LA are anonymous...

UPDATE 2: Engadget's editor replied to me. So according to him, the quotes are not anonymous, but organization-wide on purpose. If that's the case, I guess this concludes that. And I can take them on their word from now on.

UPDATE 3: And regarding royalties (as opposed to just licensing), one more reply by Engadget's editor.

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Good article
by TBPrince on Sat 1st May 2010 23:26 UTC
TBPrince
Member since:
2005-07-06

Good article with good material in it.

However the conclusion is a bit weak IMHO because that way of behaving will undoubtedly make big corporations stronger not weaker.

If the alternative is to use something older, inaccurate, delivering a lower quality, those criminals will have an easy, very easy way to claim a small group of radical extremists want people not to use best tools and technologies for God-knows-what-purpose. If you look carefully, that's how they do that now (didn't Jobs state that Flash was OLD technology? Don't these guys talk about the future ?)

Is the Google way an alternative ? Of course not. How long would it take for big G to side the other big guys the same way Microsoft and Apple are more than happy to sit in MPEG committee.

The only way is to join forces to develop an alternative, guaranteed to be free because property of no-one, or better property of everyone. That alternative MUST be more advanced and deliver higher quality so attacks about "the future" would be void.

Patents ? Let then the guys sue us and join forces to combat in courts and let's see if this is all about "communists" wanting to bring you into the past or big bad boys wanting to squeeze your pockets. Let's see which pockets are deeper and who's going to lost more in a way to money.

I, for one, would provide as much funds I can for that.

However, it is MANDATORY we don't take the FSF way of telling people that "Flash is bad and you don't need it" while you don't have a suitable alternative, expecially a BETTER alternative. Those reasons only help the bad guys.

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