[Linux-aus] Fwd: Ogg Vorbis and Theora removed from HTML5

Mike Lampard mike at mtgambier.net
Sun Dec 16 12:10:30 UTC 2007

On Sunday 16 December 2007 22:29:31 Jeff Waugh wrote:
> <quote who="Mike Lampard">
> > If so, how would Ogg be any different? Xiph have stated repeatedly that
> > Ogg has no patent encumbrances, and the spec is in the public domain.
> > Surely that would immunise any company using their tech?
> Good question -- I hope this is an informative answer. :-)
> It's the word "additional" that is the key. Apple and Nokia have taken on a
> certain amount of risk by using the formats they support. Let's call that a
> "known risk".
> Xiph have said there are no *known* patent encumberances for both Vorbis
> and Theora [1]. In particular, some patents related to Theora were freed
> along with its release.
> However, for Apple or Nokia to add Theora to their set of supported codecs,
> they are taking on new unknown risk. They don't even have the cold comfort
> of dealing with a licensor who operates the way they are comfortable with.
> We don't know if patents exist that relate to Vorbis or Theora (as with
> anything else in software technology), nor do we know who owns them, if
> they do.

I suspected this answer, thankyou for making it so concise :)  I felt it was a 
worthwhile question to ask, nevertheless.

> As with many other issues, this one is not black and white, and I'd caution
> any noisy advocate who would suggest that Apple and Nokia have no cause for
> concern. 

I certainly dont mean to suggest that, software patents are a mindfield for 

> Most wouldn't know how to do even the most basic patent search in 
> the first place, let alone a legally and technically relevant search in an
> amazingly complex technology domain such as this! ;-)

true.  and there have been those who recommend against doing such searches.

> The important thing is that we need an open web. Right now, we don't have
> an easy solution for that, with regards to audio and video. But we can hope
> it is in everyone's interests to *find* a solution to this, and that's what
> we need to communicate to Apple, Nokia and others (rather than flaming
> them).


> - Jeff
> [1] Ogg is basically irrelvant here and is not a particularly good
> container format anyway.

Thanks again

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