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Re: Fonts WG Charter feedback

From: John Hudson <tiro@tiro.com>
Date: Mon, 06 Jul 2009 17:58:15 -0700
Message-ID: <4A529DA7.8030305@tiro.com>
To: Thomas Lord <lord@emf.net>
CC: "www-font@w3.org" <www-font@w3.org>
Thomas Lord wrote:

> A Recommendation that requires TTF/OTF, perhaps along
> with an additional format, is not benefiting
> from your work per se.  It is benefiting from the works
> of many who invested in TTF/OTF without sharing your
> particular concerns, including the makers of permissively
> licensed fonts.

TTF/OTF is a font format. I'm going to take the nominalist view that 
what constitutes that font format is all the TTF/OTF format fonts that 
exist in the world at any given time. That these fonts are licensed as 
software under a myriad of different terms, restrictions, permissions or 
freedoms seems to me irrelevant to the question of format. Building a 
justification for an entirely open and unprotected web font format on 
the basis that some fonts are permissively licensed makes no more sense 
than insisting on a massively DRM-ed format on the basis that some fonts 
are extremely restrictively licensed.

The very valid concern that font developers have about TTF/OTF as a web 
font format is that, as Karsten expressed it so well, it turns every 
very site which employs @font-face into a font filesharing host. And 
we're not so naïve as to think that 'restrictively-licensed' fonts are 
not going to be all over those hosts. I and many of my colleagues have 
served our time policing alt.binaries.fonts, warez sites and torrent 
uploads. And Dave Crossland has presented a pretty clear view of how 
difficult it will actually be to police web linked fonts.

Further, the 'additional format' of which you speak is, at this point, a 
vapour format with no indication that it would possess any significant 
security to meaningfully differentiate it from raw TTF/OTF.

Received on Tuesday, 7 July 2009 00:59:05 UTC

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