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Re: CSS3 @font-face / EOT Fonts - new compromise proposal

From: Dave Crossland <dave@lab6.com>
Date: Thu, 13 Nov 2008 00:06:52 +0000
Message-ID: <2285a9d20811121606i32d27575g2ffc23cb7ac5f2fc@mail.gmail.com>
To: "Håkon Wium Lie" <howcome@opera.com>
Cc: "Brad Kemper" <brkemper.comcast@gmail.com>, "www-style@w3.org" <www-style@w3.org>
2008/11/12 Håkon Wium Lie <howcome@opera.com>:
> Also sprach Brad Kemper:
>  > Well, I guess that settles that then. Major foundries will only be
>  > satisfied with solutions that have the UA enforcing their license
>  > terms for them, something that implementors are not eagar to do. That
>  > about sum it up?
>
> I hope not.

Yes, Thomas Phinney's position (as he clarified) is informal
discussion, and shouldn't be taken for granted as the formal position
of a large influential foundry, let alone all of them.

> In the past, major vendors have stated "we only need a
> simple mechanims so that web fonts cannot be be dragged/dropped
> to/from the web inadvertently". A simple compression/obfuscation
> scheme could achieve this. I'm still hopeful that Vlad's proposal, or
> some variation of it, can gain the support of font vendors.

I wonder if the promotion of EOT to foundries as a realistic
proposition has moved most vendors away from "drag and drop from web
to desktop is the only issue" to "drag and drop from web to desktop,
and drag and drop from web site to web site, are the two issues"

>  > The big foundries might change their tune when they see smaller
>  > independant foundries eating the pie that was left on the table. So
>  > for those independant with a more open mind, I wonder if the current
>  > type formats allow for some sort of watermark or per-font-purchaser
>  > digital signing that would assist said smaller foundries in doing
>  > their own policing? Or would that require a new format?
>
> Current font formats can hold a copyright statement that, potentially,
> could encode legal prose. I wouldn't want browsers to try parsing that
> prose, but any text -- up to 64k, I've been told -- can be stored in
> this field. So, I think the current TTF/OT approach fulfills your
> requirements.

I agree. I think plenty of small foundries will be more willing to
trust that enough honest people exist - and don't need to be "kept"
honest - than big foundries, once they see a few small foundries
making a lot of money and leading the way. The foundry running
www.webfonts.info seems to be ready to be one such leader.

As you say, its leaving money on the table not too, once @font-face
support is widespread outside IE (which is imminent, with FF3.1). The
big foundries can afford to not start monetising the huge pent up
demand for web fonts, and wait and see if they can push DRM though the
W3C, but I don't think the small guys are in that position.

Many sites already serve one page for IE and another page for
standards compliant browsers. So I expect many would have no problem
licensing both EOTs and web-licensed OTF, and foundries will be
offering customers per-site licenses for the fonts they make in EOT
for IE and as OTF for other browsers.

Cheers,
Dave
Received on Thursday, 13 November 2008 00:07:28 GMT

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