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Re: .webfont Proposal 2.1

From: John Hudson <tiro@tiro.com>
Date: Wed, 22 Jul 2009 11:16:51 -0700
Message-ID: <4A675793.3010308@tiro.com>
To: www-font <www-font@w3.org>
Dave Crossland wrote:

> I'm glad you have communicated that's never happening, and hope they
> continue to support your proposal despite it instead of returning to a
> position of refusing to license fonts for the web until they get DRM.

As Frank Martinez explained during the pre-panel planning session at 
TypeCon, DRM is a business model not a technology, something about which 
there is a lot of confusion, which is why we decided to avoid the term 
during the panel discussion. I think we should avoid the term here too, 
unless making a specific distinction between DRM-enabling technologies 
or methods and other kinds of data protections. Otherwise we run the 
risk of characterising all data protections as 'DRM' and that would be 
inaccurate and misleading.

I don't think anyone on the professional font maker side, at this stage, 
is thinking in terms of DRM-enabling technologies or methods. 
Enforceable URL binding is the closest we came to such methods, and that 
is clearly off the table. What we're looking for are barriers to casual 
unlicensed use of fonts -- recognising a real existing problem in the 
market with lack of understanding of font licenses, font origins and 
font value -- that will encourage more font makers to license their 
fonts for use on the web. We understand that these barriers are not 
significant, that they are easily circumvented by someone who intends to 
use the font illegitimately. But it isn't intentional illegitimate use 
that we're hoping to limit, it is unintentional or casual illegitimate 
use, such as we see happening with desktop fonts simply because people 
don't know where they come from or what their license terms are.

I'm glad to see that Tal and Erik are responding to feedback from both 
font and browser makers, and that their proposal is being taken 
seriously. At present, I favour an EOT-derived format because the 
backwards compatibility benefits are so significant, and I'd rather see 
a single web font format than two or three.

John Hudson


PS. I've just returned from TypeCon, and have not caught up on reading 
all the list mails, but have noted Laurence Penney's thread on 
compression and John Daggett's helpful explanation of general gzip 
compression for web content.
Received on Wednesday, 22 July 2009 18:17:34 GMT

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