W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-style@w3.org > November 2007

RE: W3C CSS Home Redesign RFC

From: Ian Hickson <ian@hixie.ch>
Date: Thu, 22 Nov 2007 01:56:05 +0000 (UTC)
To: "Paul Nelson (ATC)" <paulnel@winse.microsoft.com>
Cc: www-style@w3.org
Message-ID: <Pine.LNX.4.62.0711220136300.3737@hixie.dreamhostps.com>

On Wed, 21 Nov 2007, Paul Nelson (ATC) wrote:
>
> One has to click/accept the EULA for installing Vista, Office update, 
> etc. Microsoft is not likely to give redistribution rights to fonts we 
> have spent hundreds of thousands of dollars to create.

The Vista EULA appears to be this document:

   http://download.microsoft.com/documents/useterms/Windows%20Vista_Ultimate_English_36d0fe99-75e4-4875-8153-889cf5105718.pdf

The only mention of fonts in that document is section 3.b, which reads:

   Font Components. While the software is running, you may use its fonts 
   to display and print content. You may only
     - embed fonts in content as permitted by the embedding 
       restrictions in the fonts; and
     - temporarily download them to a printer or other output device to 
       print content.

None of this seems to permit me to take a TTF font from a Vista 
installation, transcode it to the EOT format, and redistribute the EOT 
file by putting it on my Web server. Indeed, the one thing it _does_ seem 
to allow is for me to take the same TTF file from my Vista installation, 
and embed it as a data: URL in my HTML file.

So ironically, my reading of the EULA is that it allows me to use Vista's 
fonts to style my pages so that they work in Safari, whereas it _doesn't_ 
allow me to use those same fonts to style my pages in a way that works 
with IE.

Where is my interpretation incorrect?


> TTF use with web pages would be an easy way for people to install the 
> fonts without reading EULAs if applicable and would make unintentional 
> font misuse a common occurrence. "Oh, I didn't know there was a license 
> for that font." Of course they didn't. It is out there free to use like 
> all sorts of other things.

Yes, I am aware that you believe that fonts are somehow magically more 
prone to copyright violations than text in HTML and PDF files, script in 
JavaScript and VBScript files, and images in PNG, GIF, and JPEG files, and 
that therefore a trivially-breakable DRM scheme should be used to 
"protect" the fonts, despite no other Web format having any such scheme.


> EOT also allows for font compression to reduce the download size. A 75kb 
> font is not an issue. However, a 1.5MB or 14MB Asian font would 
> be...especially if the device to render the web content is a mobile 
> phone.

There's no reason you can't compress a TTF as well.

Also, a 14MB Asian font, even with a 1:10 compression ratio (which seems 
wildly optimisic), is still going to be more than a megabyte in size, 
which, by your own admission ("a 1.5MB ... font would be") is too big. So 
it's not clear that EOT actually helps here.

-- 
Ian Hickson               U+1047E                )\._.,--....,'``.    fL
http://ln.hixie.ch/       U+263A                /,   _.. \   _\  ;`._ ,.
Things that are impossible just take longer.   `._.-(,_..'--(,_..'`-.;.'
Received on Thursday, 22 November 2007 01:56:24 GMT

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