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Re: The other party in all this

From: Dave Crossland <dave@lab6.com>
Date: Mon, 6 Jul 2009 08:48:51 +0100
Message-ID: <2285a9d20907060048s77f50b5dr20e3aed432f37779@mail.gmail.com>
To: John Hudson <tiro@tiro.com>
Cc: www-font@w3.org
2009/7/6 John Hudson <tiro@tiro.com>:
> Dave Crossland wrote:
>> Nothing will stop graphic designers and everyone else who loves fonts
>> and who do not respect font licenses - which is most people, from what
>> I can tell - from not installing inevitable “web font vacuum” browser
>> extensions that will automatically install every font they happen to
>> browse across into the OS system folder, and using these fonts in
>> their print design work.
> You paint a depressing picture, Dave, but I suppose I should thank you
> for presenting the reality facing us.

(Sorry for splintering the discussion between here and Typophile, here
is my post from there)

I think selling web fonts means kissing rents for desktop use (ie,
print publishers) of those fonts goodbye, for all but handful of loyal
print designers who WANT to send type designers money, and are lucky
enough to still be in business. Perhaps this will be more than offset
by the money made selling web fonts. Maybe it won’t, and like everyone
else in this depression, type developers will be earning significantly
less money in 5 years time.

Personally, I think that all this talk about “fence posts” seems like
wishful thinking about how the world really works, and in a couple of
years these 200-emails-in-a-day discussions are going to be looked
back on as a total waste of time that was costly and
counterproductive. I mean, the guys who run thepiratebay.org got a
jail sentence, and the site is still up.

Tom Lord and I spent a lot of time talking over this issue 9 months
ago, and we really think that the best win-win-win situation for font
developers, free software developers, and users is something like his
MAME proposal - something to get people reading licenses.

People who love fonts really need to know what the license terms of
the fonts they are downloading are. If the licenses are not made
available in a way people actually pause to read - which is possible
as http://river-valley.tv/ingimp-a-smorgasbord-of-usability-adaptive-uis-and-visually-arresting-graphic-design-for-2009/
demonstrates - then they will be ignored.

CORS has a precedent in Firefox, and no one objects to it. Compression
is a good idea, Jonathan Kew’s ZOT is a fine free implementation, and
no one objects to it. Neither of these things will stop the deflation
of the print font market as I’ve described. More than these things
isn’t going to work in the real world to effect human beings' behavior
- except better licensing visibility.

This does NOT mean machine-readable licenses - that invite DRM
features in programs and DMCA-style lawsuits.

I think that hammering out the details of how to do this is the only
discussion that is good value for time/effort long term.

> Perhaps I should go sign up for that wooden boat building course now.

Funny you should say that... I'm thinking about quitting the high tech
game for that one myself given what I think 2015+ is going to look
like... http://xrl.us/orlovsailing :-)
Received on Monday, 6 July 2009 07:49:51 UTC

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