Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 12th Jan 2011 17:44 UTC
Internet & Networking With yesterday's news that Google will be dropping H.264 support from the Chrome web browser, the internet was split in half. One one side, there's people who applaud the move, who are happy that Google is pushing an open, royalty-free and unencumbered video codec (irrespective of Google's motivation). On the other side, there are the H.264 supporters, who believe that H.264 is the one and only choice for HTML5 video. One of the most vocal and public figures in the latter group is John Gruber. Following his five questions for Google, here are ten questions for Gruber about WebM, H.264, and standards on the web.
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WebM is the lesser of two evils
by Torbjorn Vik Lunde on Thu 13th Jan 2011 07:46 UTC
Torbjorn Vik Lunde
Member since:
2009-09-04

WebM may be open source, but that doesn't mean Google doesn't control it.

If Google are really serious about this openness thing, they should set up an organization so many different companies can work together on WebM, or maybe donate it to W3C or another standards body. Right now, despite being OSS, Google de-facto controls WebM. And although it is certainly bad that h264 is patented and all that, it is at least controlled by more than one company.

That being said, I definitely consider WebM to be the lesser of two evils.

Reply Score: 1

lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

WebM may be open source, but that doesn't mean Google doesn't control it.

If Google are really serious about this openness thing, they should set up an organization so many different companies can work together on WebM, or maybe donate it to W3C or another standards body. Right now, despite being OSS, Google de-facto controls WebM. And although it is certainly bad that h264 is patented and all that, it is at least controlled by more than one company.

That being said, I definitely consider WebM to be the lesser of two evils.


Google have provided (donated) a worldwide, perpetual, irrevocable, zero-charge, royalty-free license to everybody with respect to WebM.

http://www.webmproject.org/license/bitstream/

The code is open source, and the development process is accessible to all.

http://www.webmproject.org/code/contribute/

So Google already have "set up an organization so many different companies can work together on WebM". exactly has been happening now for over six months. here are the organisations already involved:

http://www.webmproject.org/about/supporters/

I can't see how WebM could possibly be any more inclusive. You need to actually come up with something that Google haven't done to make WebM open before you can begin to criticise them for not doing enough.

Reply Parent Score: 4

Torbjorn Vik Lunde Member since:
2009-09-04

So Google already have "set up an organization so many different companies can work together on WebM". exactly has been happening now for over six months.

Awesome.

I can't see how WebM could possibly be any more inclusive

I'm trying to find information on if WebM organisation (if there is one) is simply sponsored by Google, or also controlled by Google.

If it is only sponsored by Google, and control of it is democratic in similar fashion to how open web standards are developed, color me a believer. (Which does seem to be case.)

Edited 2011-01-13 11:34 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 1