Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 30th Apr 2010 21:40 UTC, submitted by Helge
Legal Well, this certainly explains a whole lot. Both Apple and Microsoft have stated that the legality of Theora is highly debatable, and as it turns out, they knew more than we do - most likely courtesy of their close involvement with the MPEG-LA. Responding to an email from Free Software Foundation Europe activist Hugo Roy, Steve Jobs has stated that a patent pool is being assembled to go after Theora. Update: Monty Montgomery of Xiph (Ogg and Theora's parent organisation) has responded on Slashdot: "If Jobs's email is genuine, this is a powerful public gaffe ('All video codecs are covered by patents'). He'd be confirming MPEG's assertion in plain language anyone can understand. It would only strengthen the pushback against software patents and add to Apple's increasing PR mess. Macbooks and iPads may be pretty sweet, but creative individuals don't really like to give their business to jackbooted thugs."
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Wait a year and use MPEG1.
by bhtooefr on Sat 1st May 2010 11:29 UTC
Member since:

MPEG1 is just about to be old enough that a reference implementation from 1991 cannot possibly be covered under any US patents.

H.261 now must be unencumbered, although it's too restrictive for modern video - CIF and QCIF resolutions are it, for the 1990 implementation.

Yes, I'm suggesting saying "screw it all, and just use 20 year old technology to avoid patents." That's 100% legally safe, as long as you stay with codecs that themselves are that old, and don't infringe on copyright of those codecs.

Reply Score: 1

howitzer86 Member since:

If anyone did that, it would be proof that software patents stifle innovation.

The large companies behind MPEG-LA have considerable control over what we view on our computers, and they are going to avoid giving credence to that fact by making sure we use their most patent encumbered formats.

Reply Parent Score: 1