Orton Akinci on WebM and Ogg Theora
mwEmbed is great! there is no problem with that. i love it. i more than appreciate michael dale for his work on mv_embed. it is a great added value for theora.
webM is also great. it is the prize of the war won.
but what i am talking is just about "network economies" and "economies of scale". the more people are in the network, the more people will be willing to be a part of it.
it is also about the idea of copyleft. free software/formats/works supporting other free stuff.
if someone using a safari browser can see my videos, then they will not need/want to switch to another browser. they will not even be aware of the problem with their browser. safari doesn't even render my fallback message about the problem of their browser and advice to use firefox to watch the videos. users may not even notice mv_embed enables them to watch the videos and covers the problem with their safari browser.
mv_embed is great for projects with huge traffic that doesn't want to choose between using proprietary formats or loosing their visitors. but i have nothing to loose. if someone wants to see my videos, if they really really want to see them for any reason, they need to choose a "free" browser and contribute to the network of it and to the idea of "freedom".
creating added value is important. if you create added value, people may want to switch, be a part of that "network" as in the theory of "network economies". my projects doesn't create added value for many people, even for nobody. but i am ok if it does even for one single person and if i make him/her think once more on the idea of "freedom" and free culture. for some people, "viral" status of the copyleft may be considered as limiting the freedom of people, but it is not about "freedom", it is just about "power" as Stallman and eben moglen describes it.
i find theora valuable and politically important for my works and for the idea of free culture. mv_embed is great but it is weak copyleft. if people who can create more added value with their cultural works choose ogg theora as the only option to experience the value created, then we will benefit from the positive effect of the economies of scale. mv_embed is very important for the period until theora becomes more popular. but not necessary for my case which is not practical but political.
the same ideas are also valid for my approach to webm.
whether i use it or not, there will be many many people who will use it just for "practical" reasons and it will be a popular standard eventually. this is great and since the goal is to make free/open formats popular to benefit from the positive effect of economies of scale for all human kind. it will be popular because google is behind it. they will use it for youtube. in a week, more people will be aware of webm than that of those who have been aware of theora till now. but those people will not possibly be aware of the politics of webm for free culture. they will not be the supporters of other free software/standards/works as in the idea of copyleft... most people will not even be aware of the fact that the added value created for them with webm was made possible because of the idea of "freedom". they will not even know that what they watch in youtube is in webm format. i didn't see any notice on html5 page of youtube about webm and the politics and benefits of it... it is just "practical" for google, not "political". in the end they will not have to pay a licensing fee to mpeg la. they also know that the "bazaar" model is more "practical" than the "cathedral" model. but for me, free software is not only "practical" as "open source" but also "political". since webm uses a bsd-style license, it will not contribute to the network effect of "free culture" as it should.
all the choices about webm is practical, not political. this is also ok. we are on the same side but i am not that close to the "middleway". we shouldn't forget about the politics of free culture and some should tell/remind it to the masses.
the political idea of "commons-based peer production" has been reduced to being a practical method calling it "crowdsourcing". neo-liberal politics rendered the idea of "crowdsourcing" popular and made "peer production", the importance of being peer and creating commons invisible. it is the same for free software and open source. it is the same for creative commons which misses the importance of derivative works and commercial usability for the idea of a "free culture".
if "people don't have a *choice* as to what browser they can use" as you say they must be at least demanding it form those who control their "software" and their "freedom". this is also a field of battle. don't worry, there will be "the more people behind the free standard" and "the more momentum it will gather." there will be other people who will do that. google will make it. other supporters will make it. corporates will make it. they don't need peers for that. it will eventually be popular. but who will keep supporting theora? webm deosn't need us, but theora will, as we will need it as peers. nobody knows if google will use a modified version of it for youtube and make that version proprietary (bsd style license allows it) when there will be no competitors like theora in the feature. in the network economies, once a product reaches a critical mass, it renders the competitors invisable. that's why theora must stand tall. there will be many others who will support/use webm. i will not speak ill of webm but will support theora. even if it will have the worst quality among others in the future, i will still use it. because it is "political" for me, not just "practical"