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Re: EOT-Lite File Format

From: John Hudson <tiro@tiro.com>
Date: Thu, 30 Jul 2009 23:19:41 -0700
Message-ID: <4A728CFD.2070205@tiro.com>
To: "Levantovsky, Vladimir" <Vladimir.Levantovsky@MonotypeImaging.com>
CC: Thomas Lord <lord@emf.net>, Thomas Phinney <tphinney@cal.berkeley.edu>, Sylvain Galineau <sylvaing@microsoft.com>, "Tab Atkins Jr." <jackalmage@gmail.com>, robert@ocallahan.org, John Daggett <jdaggett@mozilla.com>, www-font <www-font@w3.org>
Vladimir wrote:

> As I understand what the current draft says
> (http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/www-font/2009JulSep/0780.html), the
> EOT-Lite conforming UA will render a font if it's capable to do so,
> regardless of the presence of rootstring (i.e. completely ignoring the
> root strings, whether mismatched or not).

It makes sense that the EOT-Lite proposal makes such a statement about 
EOT-Lite fonts. But, again, this presumes a distinction can be made 
between EOT-Lite and EOT-Classic fonts when encountered in the wild, 
because ignoring the rootstrings in a format that deliberately states 
that rootstrings should be ignored is different from ignoring 
rootstrings in a format that deliberately states that

	User Agents must validate that the page using
	the embedded font is within the list of URLs
	from which the embedded font object may be
	legitimately referenced. [1]

I'm not a lawyer, but it seems to me that a browser that fails to follow 
this when encountering an EOT-Classic font is at legal risk. If not, why 
all the fuss about DMCA? At the very least, this seems to me a question 
that needs to be examined by qualified lawyers experienced with this 
kind of issue.

At present, the non-IE browser makers are deliberately not touching EOT 
fonts because they don't want to get entangled with the rootstring 
issue. They're not supporting EOT but ignoring rootstrings: they're 
keeping the heck away from EOT altogether. It seems to me that they must 
continue to do so, because the status of EOT Classic fonts doesn't 
magically change when EOT Lite comes along.  This means that while EOT 
Lite fonts can be backwards compatible with IE<=8, EOT Classic fonts 
must not be forwards compatible with EOT Lite. Somehow the two formats 
need to be clearly distinct at the file level, such that an EOT Lite 
implementing browser can process the one but avoid the other.

JH


[1] http://www.w3.org/Submission/2008/SUBM-EOT-20080305/#RootString
Received on Friday, 31 July 2009 06:20:36 GMT

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