Yes, I broke my own rules and used a "breaking" modifier for this story (let me have my fun for once). Here we have it, as the rumour mill suggested, Google has released the On2 VP8 video codec as open source (royalty free, BSD-style), while also launching the WebM container format which combines a VP8 video stream with Vorbis audio. Support for WebM has been enabled on YouTube's HTML5 beta, and you can download patches against ffmpeg as well as DirectShow filters for Windows (Gstreamer plugins are labelled as "coming soon"). Mac users are out of luck for now; no QuickTime plugins have been announced yet. Update: The WebM blog is now open - and the list of partners is pretty decent already. It includes ARM, NVIDIA, AMD, Qualcomm, and many others. Update II: VP8 will be baked into Flash. Update III: The Opera labs version with WebM support has been released too, for Linux, Mac, and Windows.