Re: [rtcweb] Google VP8 Patent Grant for third parties [Was Re:Proposal for H.263 baseline codec]

Dean Willis <> Thu, 12 April 2012 06:29 UTC

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Date: Thu, 12 Apr 2012 01:29:13 -0500
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From: Dean Willis <>
To: "Paul E. Jones" <>
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Subject: Re: [rtcweb] Google VP8 Patent Grant for third parties [Was Re:Proposal for H.263 baseline codec]
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> I said before, either direction is a gamble.  But, the odds of not getting
> successfully sued are in your favor with H.264, in my opinion.  Here's why:
That's arguable. As a small developer (and a poor one), I'm not able to pay
for licensing H.264. Therefore, my odds of getting sued (if anybody notices
my work) are pretty high. Just ask Microsoft what the odds of getting sued
for using H.264 are ... or the costs of trying to license it (reports are
that Moto was asking $4 billion for their patents alone).

I'm not saying VP8 is any safer in the long run, but it's certainly easier
to comply with its licensing terms up front. So I might accidentally
infringe, but it wouldn't be willful (at least on the essential core; there
are a lot of patents about there about stuff you might want to do with the
video that cover both codecs).

Think of it as picking up a random snake that MIGHT be venomous, versus
picking up one that's already buzzing its tail and striking at movement
(caught one in my yard Monday, actually).

The thing to remember is that you need to handle both with respect. They're
still snakes. Even an unenvenomed bite can get infected. And the quiet one
might be a cobra instead of a rattlesnake.