Re: New work on fonts at W3C

Hello, All,

This discussion is progressing, but I have a tangential question I  
wish to pose:

If the font vendors believe that special handling is necessary for  
their products when used on the web, why do *they* not do something  
about it?

Adobe produced "Reader" and provided it freely to allow the use of  
their product on the web. If fonts are special, then allow the font  
vendors to produce a plug-in or special encryption code for browsers.  
Of course, in the case of special code, it would have to be GPL- 
compatible so Mozilla would incorporate it.

If they are willing to 'put their money where their mouths are' it  
would be a wonderful experiment, comparing the use of 'free' fonts  
vs. 'paid' fonts. The winner, of course would be the users (both  
designers and readers), but if the font foundries are correct in  
their suppositions that high-quality fonts are worth the money, then  
they would also win. If the supposition is incorrect, no one --  
except the font vendors -- would be out anything. This would solve  
the question of 'DRM' or 'free', at least for fonts, once and for all.

I would love to see this experiment carried out, and believe it would  
have interesting results. (Unguessable, but interesting, results,  
however it ends.)

On Jun 23, 2009, at 2:49 PM, Levantovsky, Vladimir wrote:

>> A touchstone question might be:  how does that conversion
>> step benefit users?
> I see your point. In my opinion, by introducing this simple  
> conversion step we address the concerns of the font vendors and, in  
> turn, it would benefit web users by making large collection of high- 
> quality fonts available to them. As a result web users will also  
> benefit from high quality typography and worldwide language support  
> on the web.

My proposal would address the concerns of the vendors, as they would  
provide their own solution. It would also address the concerns of  
those who create the standards (written and UA implementations), that  
licensing and other social interactions should not affect the rest of  
the web -- unless an actual use case can be demonstrated. It would  
also allow the vendors to significantly speed up the (sometimes  
glacial) standards process and get their products in the marketplace  
rapidly (if they are willing to pay for it).


Received on Tuesday, 23 June 2009 22:21:11 UTC