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[Bug 10902] <video> element needs to support some form of DRM solution

From: <bugzilla@jessica.w3.org>
Date: Tue, 12 Oct 2010 20:28:02 +0000
To: public-html-bugzilla@w3.org
Message-Id: <E1P5lS6-0003gC-4y@jessica.w3.org>
http://www.w3.org/Bugs/Public/show_bug.cgi?id=10902

--- Comment #35 from Mo McRoberts <mo.mcroberts@nexgenta.com> 2010-10-12 20:28:01 UTC ---
No mechanism, in real terms, stands in the way of somebody who is determined --
by nature you're handing over both the encrypted data *and* the key to decrypt.
That's a fundamental part of the DRM proposition. And, however much people
don't like to admit it, the point of DRM _isn't_ to stand in the way (save for
some minor inconvenience) of those who seed on BitTorrent today, but to prevent
Joe Consumer from getting in on the act.

(The pros [which are few] and cons [which are numerous] of this approach can be
debated until you're blue in the face, but it doesn't really alter the demands
for its support -- I speak from experience in saying that).

So, considering this in purely technical terms, what aspects of such a barrier
(be it involving encrypted media, or otherwise) require support from HTML5 in
the first instance in order to work?

It would be tempting to say “none”: in that a browser will behave entirely
properly today if it comes across some unsupported DRMd content which is served
via the <video> or <audio> elements: it will simply report that it's unable to
play back the source.

However, there is an argument that there should be some means of specifying the
DRM scheme in advance in much the same way as codecs are specified. While this
doesn't have any bearing on playability of a particular source, it does allow
scripts or a user agent to determine playability in advance, smoothing the
process somewhat. a "drm" parameter would seem sensible, with either  a
globally-unique value (a URI, perhaps) as the value, or a registry maintained
somewhere (WHATWG Wiki, perhaps, as with link relations)?

By nature, I don't believe the actual nitty-gritty of any particular scheme is
relevant to HTML5: if a UA supports a scheme (e.g., FairPlay), it's going to be
bound by the “rules” of that scheme; if it doesn't support it, those rules are
irrelevant; and, of course, most schemes are container-specific, and HTML5
doesn't specify any particular container formats, so specifying scheme detail
would be silly (not to mention a political nightmare, and a case of the cart
leading the horse).

Does this seem reasonable [philosophical objections to DRM in general
notwithstanding]?

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Received on Tuesday, 12 October 2010 20:28:04 UTC

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