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RE: I expect all foundries to start offering web font licenses within 6 months.

From: Richard Fink <rfink@readableweb.com>
Date: Sat, 18 Jul 2009 00:52:07 -0400
To: "'Dave Crossland'" <dave@lab6.com>, "'Thomas Phinney'" <tphinney@cal.berkeley.edu>
Cc: "'www-font'" <www-font@w3.org>
Message-ID: <000f01ca0763$82653cf0$872fb6d0$@com>
2009/7/17 Dave Crossland <dave@lab6.com>:
>Which makes all the cusses from various type designers against Wium
>Lie and Daggett and Hyatt for rushing ahead immorally with support for
>that format kind of funny, to me.

Just to elaborate on what Thomas Phinney is saying, since I've been aware of TypeKit's basic approach for some time: in this case support for the "open" standard actually leads to higher costs for all concerned. This may seem counter intuitive, but it's a fact. (And once it starts costing me more, I start cussin' too.)
In order to deliver the font-data to the user agent in a form that effectively prevents easy download of a complete OTF and thereby meet the requirements of most font licensors, the OTF must be pre-processed and obfuscated. (I don't want to go into any more detail than that.)
Does this obfuscation meet the "garden fence" test? Yes, I absolutely do believe it does. But it also inflicts considerable inconvenience and additional cost. As much or more than using WEFT to create an EOT file with root strings and compression, or not. Fat or lite.
And it is not due to a lack of interoperable implementations, either. Microsoft could adopt linking to "raw" OTF files tomorrow, and it would still not change this.
It only changes if one assumes that universal support for linking to "raw" files would, over time, as a practical matter, erode the need to obtain a license at all.
The bottom line question, as always, remains: under what system is it most probable we will all get the fonts we want and need?


Cheers,

rich

-----Original Message-----
From: www-font-request@w3.org [mailto:www-font-request@w3.org] On Behalf Of Dave Crossland
Sent: Friday, July 17, 2009 7:52 PM
To: Thomas Phinney
Cc: www-font
Subject: Re: I expect all foundries to start offering web font licenses within 6 months.

2009/7/17 Thomas Phinney <tphinney@cal.berkeley.edu>:
> On further consideration, I just wanted to say that "I expect all
> foundries to start offering web font licenses within six months" may
> not be so crazy.

Well, as I admit, I am hyping things a little. But things do seem to
happen fast on the web when standards bodies aren't involved ;-)

> It depends on what you mean by "web font licenses."
> If you mean "offer licenses that allow folks to link to naked TTF/OTF
> fonts on web servers" (which is how I interpreted the original post)
> then yeah, that's not happening any time soon.
> ...
> some of the solutions ... are built on top of the
> "raw font" approach (as well as on top of EOT), but the solution
> vendors such as TypeKit are building in *lots* of other protections to
> make font vendors happy.

But those protections are not DRM, and despite the server-side
restrictions, the solutions are indeed supporting raw TTF fonts.

Which makes all the cusses from various type designers against Wium
Lie and Daggett and Hyatt for rushing ahead immorally with support for
that format kind of funny, to me.

Cheers,
Dave
Received on Saturday, 18 July 2009 04:52:53 GMT

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