Friday, March 04, 2011

Web Video Rivalry Sparks U.S. Probe - WSJ.com

A perhaps pivotal patent pool pursuit

Antitrust enforcers are investigating whether MPEG LA, or its members, are trying to cripple an alternative format called VP8 that Google released last year—by creating legal uncertainty over whether users might violate patents by employing that technology, these people added.

The probe, which pits Google and open-source software advocates against some technology giants like Apple, could help determine whether anyone will own rights over the creation and broadcast of online video in the next major Web programming language, called HTML 5.

At stake is "who is going to have competitive clout in the world after television," said Eben Moglin, a Columbia University professor who supports free and open software.

Web Video Rivalry Sparks U.S. Probe - WSJ.com

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