HTML5 spec editor slams Google & gang's DRM bid

HTML5

(PhysOrg.com) -- A draft proposal by Google, Microsoft and Netflix to introduce mechanisms for copy protection on web videos has generated strong opposition and a response that the proposal is "unethical." Reaction has been strong against the powerful trio's bid to see HTML5 carry digital rights management (DRM) tools.

On the opposing side, developers and supporters of open systems argue that the very idea of adding DRM protection to video goes against the spirit of HTML5.

“Any technology whose exclusive goal is to stop users from being able to make use of the content they have purchased is, in my opinion, unethical,” said Ian Hickson, HTML specification editor, in an interview with CNET.

For Hickson, the Google-Microsoft-Netflix proposal is “just a plug-in platform in disguise.”

The plan calls for proprietary plug-ins, called CDMs, or content decryption modules, which is not amenable to the open nature of HTML5, according to opposing arguments.

The whole point of HTML5 is to move away from plug-ins; the introduction of such extensions, Hickson argued, would be tantamount to keeping plug-ins around.

Specifically, , and this week proposed a new web standard, in the form of the Encrypted Media Extensions proposal, and announced it on a W3C mailing list.

The draft spells out a framework for bringing forth a system that manages protected content on the web browser. The proposed Encrypted Media Extensions standard would add a new set of API extensions for the HTMLMediaElement. The latter defines specialized properties and JavaScript methods available on HTML audio and video elements. These extensions would introduce DRM capabilities to HTML5-provided video.

Whether some form of content protection is even necessary, leave alone ethical, is part of the present debate.

permits only authorized video and audio. A solution to unauthorized copying has been seen in browser plug-ins for DRM protection. Hickson said he would rather see copyright law, not proprietary mechanisms, governing the use of video. He said there was no need for technology to protect ; the presence of copyright law was adequate.

What next? Since the spec being proposed by the threesome is a draft, tech watchers see no guarantees that what the three propose will become an accepted standard, but at the same time there can be no guarantees that the debate will go south.

Pressure to add some kind of DRM to HTML5 video is likely to continue, writes Scott Gilbertson in Webmonkey. “With Hickson very adamantly against it and Mozilla unlikely to support it in its current form, it’s not likely to move beyond the draft stage without some serious revisions.”


Explore further

YouTube expands support for HTML5

More information: lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/p … ml/2012Feb/0274.html
dvcs.w3.org/hg/html-media/raw- … encrypted-media.html

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Citation: HTML5 spec editor slams Google & gang's DRM bid (2012, February 25) retrieved 18 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2012-02-html5-spec-editor-slams-google.html
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Feb 25, 2012
But in the end it's all just a bunch of pixels on a computer screen; they can always be grabbed by another application and dumped to a DRM-free format. Can't they see that any data that is shown to a user can be captured and stored in another format? This sort of measure is an exercise in futility, just more of the same-old solutions.

Feb 25, 2012
It still makes the copying more difficult, because the people spreading the DRM-free format can be targeted easier. I'm against every form of censorship of information, but which form of information the song of Aquillera bears? It's a pure entertainment, so you should pay for it, if you want to enjoy it. On the other hand, the revenue of media companies is still rising well, so I do perceive the DRM redundant move in the profit battle.

Feb 25, 2012
DRM costs the media more money than it makes.
The point is they have enough money to spend on this crap.

Feb 25, 2012
Of course there are plenty of cases of DRM making valid authorized usage impossible. My personal experience was with a digital copy of a movie I bought. Neither my wife nor I could get it to work, and we never got a reply back from tech support, so after a week my daughter finally got to see the movie I bought for her when I got fed up and downloaded a pirate copy for her.
DRM 0, Pirates 2. (Fortunately the law says media shifting is fair use.)

jo1
Feb 26, 2012
The ability of the DRM already exists. Meanwhile Google can detect all illegal copies of an original program by an other mean, directly on the youtube server, by polling all records. For example, The France owns a database with a print of 3 seconds of music, videos in all format of the web and a plc polls all database of the server, to detect the undeclared copies. Meanwhile DRM are not a solution, because all drm of the paid products not always fit to the player, which can be hardware or software

Feb 26, 2012
Is Google turning into another Microsoft, you know the one people love to haaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaate.

Feb 26, 2012
Offer services that people want and are worth paying for instead of punishing legitimate consumers with DRM.

Feb 26, 2012
The pay model of copyright is based on restricting access to information to artifically inflate the price over what it really costs to reproduce.

Artists should make their profit from the creation of content by selling their labour to the public, and the distributors should make their profit from distributing the content in a freely competetive market without legalized monopolies to the content. It is possible for example to create a music distributor company that pools money from customers so they can collectively commission a musician they like to record a new album, for profit.

Copyright breaks this by making it difficult for artists to get their works around in a market where on every step you have to check that you're not treading on someone's copyright, while the distributors are making money hand over fist from the artists' works without adding any value to it, and they control the visibility of the artists by pushing the content that they select.

Copyright is unethical.

Feb 26, 2012
A radio station for example gets money out of advertising, and for that they need listeners, so they have to play music that their audience is interested in. That's great for the new artist, because he can offer free new music, that the radio station plays, which is advertisement for the artist who then gets public recognition. Because there is no copyright to stop it, his music gets around fast if it's any good, and soon many people know him. This creates demand for his work, which the public will pay through some kind of an arbiter company or directly.

Under the copyright regime however, a radio station has to spend money to royalties and legal fees, and finding out whether they can even if they play copyright-free music, which creates a barrier for artists and makes them dependent on the record company to push their music on the public in the form of paid playlists and advertisements.

This is just one example where copyright creates a market failure in favor of the middle men.

Feb 26, 2012
A radio station for example gets money out of advertising, and for that they need listeners, so they have to play music that their audience is interested in. That's great for the new artist, because he can offer free new music, that the radio station plays, which is advertisement for the artist who then gets public recognition. Because there is no copyright to stop it, his music gets around fast if it's any good, and soon many people know him. This creates demand for his work, which the public will pay through some kind of an arbiter company or directly.
_________

So, the creator of this music doesn't get paid by the radio station for using his music. Rather, he will be payed by "some kind of an arbiter company or directly". Who would pay for the creator of the music? And, why? He doesn't own it. It's no longer his. He gave up all rights to it when he sung it in public. Without copyright, it would immediately go into the public domain.

Feb 26, 2012
Sounds like electronic warfare,whatever is come up with there is a counter measure to get around it.

Feb 27, 2012
So, the creator of this music doesn't get paid by the radio station for using his music. Rather, he will be payed by "some kind of an arbiter company or directly". Who would pay for the creator of the music? And, why?


Nobody. That's the point.

But if anybody wants any more from him, a live perfomance or a new song, they have to pay him to do it. Once the demand is there, the price goes up until it's worth the effort to the artist. If not, then he simply wasn't good enough.

For example, if I hear the song on the radio and go "Hmm... I really want the CD album", no doubt many others will too. A distributor sees this public demand and collects up offers to pay until the artist's price is met and surpassed. At that point, money is transferred from the customers through the distributor to the artist, and the distributor transfers the new album to the customers, who can then do whatever they desire with it.

It works by making new, not re-selling the old. The old is free.

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