W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > public-texttracks@w3.org > September 2012

Re: Metadata in the VTT file header (bug 15851), use cases (and a need to close this)

From: Ian Hickson <ian@hixie.ch>
Date: Fri, 14 Sep 2012 21:27:31 +0000 (UTC)
To: Jean-Baptiste Kempf <jb@videolan.org>
cc: public-texttracks <public-texttracks@w3.org>
Message-ID: <Pine.LNX.4.64.1209142122390.1904@ps20323.dreamhostps.com>
On Thu, 13 Sep 2012, Jean-Baptiste Kempf wrote:
> On Thu, Sep 13, 2012 at 09:00:08AM +0200, Philip Jägenstedt wrote :
> > I don't really see why we should try to accommodate for non-Web users, 
> > in particular until they themselves come to ask for it.
> And yet you took SRT, because it was very widely used by non-Web users, 
> in order to have an important traction and facility to convert them into 
> WebVTT.

Actually that wasn't the reason we started from SRT. I looked at all the 
formats I could get my hands on (see the WHATWG wiki for the results of 
that research) and picked the one that was the closest match for our use 
cases. The other format that came close was the FAB Subtitler format, but 
I couldn't find enough documentation on it, unfortunately.

Wide usage was not a great concern. If it was, we'd likely have gone for 
something used a lot more, e.g. the formats used with TV broadcasts or on 
DVDs, which are used way more than SRT. SRT was mostly a niche format for 
video enthusiasts online.

Most formats convert to and from WebVTT pretty trivially. SRT is not 
especially easier to convert, in practice.

Ian Hickson               U+1047E                )\._.,--....,'``.    fL
http://ln.hixie.ch/       U+263A                /,   _.. \   _\  ;`._ ,.
Things that are impossible just take longer.   `._.-(,_..'--(,_..'`-.;.'
Received on Friday, 14 September 2012 21:27:58 UTC

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