Wikimedia considers supporting H.264 to boost accessibility, content

The Wikimedia Foundation is considering the use of H.264 video, in spite of its patent and license encumbrances, in an attempt to increase the amount of free educational video content it can offer.

The mission of the Wikimedia Foundation is to “collect and develop the world’s knowledge and to make it available to everyone for free, for any purpose.” Being free, both of cost and of onerous license restrictions, is one of the foundation’s guiding principles.

However, this principle is causing problems when it comes to video. At the moment, the Wikimedia Commons, a repository of over 19 million free-to-use educational media files, has only 38,000 video files. The Commons currently requires videos to use either the Ogg Theora or WebM compression algorithms, as both are freely licensed and hence consistent with Wikimedia’s founding principles.

Read 6 remaining paragraphs | Comments

via Ars Technica


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