[Foundation-l] Re: File format policy

Ilya Haykinson haykinson at gmail.com
Mon Feb 13 17:28:38 UTC 2006

> Erik Moeller wrote:
> > "It is allowed to upload files in patent-encumbered formats like MP3 or
> > the MPEG-4 codecs only provided that a version in a non-encumbered
> > format is also uploaded. Files which are only provided in
> > patent-encumbered formats should be deleted."

I don't see this as an openness-of-content issue at all; I see it as a
technological problem.  Our organizational desire is to provide open
access to data; to some degree this means using open,
patent-unencumbered formats such that patent restrictions will not be
an obstacle to viewing our content.

On the other hand, a large part of our organizational desire is to
actually provide the data.  Currently our video content is accessible
to a very small subset of users; just like we present our
database-persisted data using XHTML that is understood by web
browsers, we need to present video data in some format that's
understandable by most computers out there.

Without compromising our stance, we could insist on all uploads to be
open formats (like .ogg) but transcode to common viewable formats as
an option for viewers who don't have OGG players. I don't see how that
would be in conflict with our core mission.

-ilya haykinson

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