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Free Software Foundation Condemns Mozilla's Move To Support DRM In Firefox

Soulskill posted about 6 months ago | from the we're-shocked dept.

DRM 403

New submitter ptr_88 writes: "The Free Software Foundation has opposed Mozilla's move to support DRM in the Firefox browser, partnering with Adobe to do so. The FSF said, '[We're] deeply disappointed in Mozilla's announcement. The decision compromises important principles in order to alleviate misguided fears about loss of browser market share. It allies Mozilla with a company hostile to the free software movement and to Mozilla's own fundamental ideals. ... We recognize that Mozilla is doing this reluctantly, and we trust these words coming from Mozilla much more than we do when they come from Microsoft or Amazon. At the same time, nearly everyone who implements DRM says they are forced to do it, and this lack of accountability is how the practice sustains itself.'"

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First comment! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47028665)

First comment!

Explanation of Mozilla (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47028689)

Truly, we got an offer we couldn't decline.

Corporate directed not volunteer direct ... (5, Insightful)

perpenso (1613749) | about 6 months ago | (#47028975)

Truly, we got an offer we couldn't decline.

Many successful FOSS projects are corporate sponsored or subsidized, so corporations are going to be able to provide direction.

The days of volunteers controlling things are long gone for many large and/or successful projects.

Re:Corporate directed not volunteer direct ... (4, Insightful)

PopeRatzo (965947) | about 6 months ago | (#47029059)

Many successful FOSS projects

So doesn't this mean that someone could just fork Firefox without the DRM?

As corporations co-opt FOSS, it's all gotten so confusing for me.

Plenty of forks already ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47029203)

.... and all of them pretty much suck. Lack of stability (as in constant crashes), memory issues and incompatibility with most plugins are common in all of them.

Re:Corporate directed not volunteer direct ... (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47029209)

I know of at least three forks; Pale Moon, Cyberfox, and Waterfox. I know the Pale Moon author has no plans to add DRM, but I'm not sure about the other two.

too true (1)

chromaexcursion (2047080) | about 6 months ago | (#47028977)

That sums it up precisely.

Explanation of Mozilla (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47029025)

Somehow, they discovered that their previous CEO, who had made it clear that he would absolutely refuse to put DRM in Firefox, had made an embarrassing political donation, and forced him out of the company.

Re:Explanation of Mozilla (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47029189)

One more reason to switch to something else. I have.

Re:Explanation of Mozilla (4, Insightful)

BZ (40346) | about 6 months ago | (#47029297)

You're mischaracterizing Brendan's position on DRM, as I'm sure he would tell you if you just asked him personally. I strongly recommend you do so.

He doesn't like DRM, and neither does anyone else at Mozilla, but you do realize that he was CTO and then CEO while most of the negotiations with Adobe were happening, right?

Re:Explanation of Mozilla (2)

rev0lt (1950662) | about 6 months ago | (#47029299)

I still remember when Firefox was Firebird (no, not the database) or whatever. The barebones web-light version of Mozilla suite. And their goal wasn't implement everything under the sun AND the kitchen sink in a browser, but steer away from it. I guess they grew up. I blame Google's money :D

In other news... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47028693)

...RMS picks fleas out of his bear and cracks them between his fingernails.

Yawn. (1, Interesting)

amosh (109566) | about 6 months ago | (#47028699)

Yawn. RMS? Attacking a much more successful group for not living up to his perceived orthodoxy? Gasp.

Thank god this is no longer a common type of article on /., at least.

Re:Yawn. (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47028705)

Yes, thank god people are sacrificing their morals for some inane entertainment.

Re:Yawn. (2)

amosh (109566) | about 6 months ago | (#47028715)

Right. That's what Mozilla's well thought out, well argued statement was. Them "Sacrificing their morals."

And after all, it's always more important to attack the people on your side who are not living up to YOUR blessed level of total moral purity than... you know... actually accomplishing anything.

Oh wait, did I say "more important"? I meant "easier".

Re:Yawn. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47028779)

They are going out of their way to support and proliferate closed source blobs to be executed by browsers. It really goes against everything Mozilla stands (well, stood, I guess) for. They now seem to be more concerned about market share than anything else. Quite the 180 from when they released phoenix...

Re:Yawn. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47028829)

How can you claim mozilla stood for free software when it started as a closed source proprietary browser [wikipedia.org] ?

Re:Yawn. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47028985)

Do not feed the troll.

Re:Yawn. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47029017)

Because it didn't start out as a proprietary browser. Netscape Communicator started out as a proprietary browser, and continued to be so until development stopped on it.

Mozilla, on the other hand, which was based on Netscape Communicator, was created with the specific intent of creating an open source internet suite.

Re:Yawn. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47029055)

Netscape Communicator's 4.x source code was the base for the Netscape-developed Mozilla Application Suite, which was later renamed SeaMonkey.

Fact! Mozilla is based of a proprietary, closed sourced browser.

Re:Yawn. (1)

sumdumass (711423) | about 6 months ago | (#47029243)

What is your point? Netscape open sourced the code and created the Mozilla project specifically to open source their browser after the company was failing.

It's like you are saying laws against killing people are religious because "thou shalt not murder" was a religious teaching or something and therefor no other relationship can be made with barring killing. The fact of the matter is, Mozilla has always been about open source and was born out of open source even if it's initial code base was closed and proprietary because OSS was the specific intent of it's creation and open sourcing of the original code.

Re:Yawn. (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47028869)

Just out of curiosity, any of the people complaining here about Mozilla caring about market share, actually supported the Mozilla Foundation financially or by other means before screaming and shouting at them because they try to maintain theirselves "commercial" enough? They need to matter in order to obtain funding, unless we decide to pay for the product. Otherwise FF is open source, grab the sources and maintain a DRM free version of it, named IceWolf or whatever you like. Do any of you feel up to it!?

There's already IceCat (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47028947)

And the correct abbreviation for Firefox is Fx

Re:Yawn. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47029139)

any of the people complaining here about Mozilla caring about market share, actually supported the Mozilla Foundation financially or by other means

Not since they ruined the user interface after 3.6. Any attempt to contribute even so much as a bug fix or a request for a regression got WONTFIXed.

FF29 ruined it further. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47029295)

I now can't even readjust the forward/back buttons to be seperate from the URI bar, which is a huge inconvenience to me, since my default setup has them next to the reload stop buttons (which they'd already ruined by making them automatically merge without any visible or explicit way to keep them seperate like previous versions of every netscape/mozilla product since the original has either had or allowed.)

Unfortunately for me the only two options that are 'up to date' are Firefox and Chromium. And transitioning to something else loses me all the plugins that had me migrate to them in the first place.

Re:Yawn. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47028979)

Fuck you. Supporting DRM directly means they are not on our side.

Re:Yawn. (3, Insightful)

tepples (727027) | about 6 months ago | (#47029133)

So how should one be "on our side" while still providing a technical means for rental of non-free videos on demand? Or has FSF declared that not only all software but also all cultural works must be free?

Re:Yawn. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47029281)

How do non-DRMed games stop copyright infringement? Well, they don't (They wouldn't even if they had DRM, but that's besides the point.). Rather than treating the user with hostility by using DRM, it is possible to instead trust them.

This has nothing to do with cultural works being free. The real problem is evil copyright holders (big corporations like the MPAA) who demand DRM at the expense of morality. Cultural works needn't necessarily be free in order to be DRM-free.

Re:Yawn. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47029205)

Fuck you.

Just because it has DRM support doesnt mean you have to use it. Avoid DRM content and this won't affect you.

The masses though WANT DRM content. Maybe they don't want DRM, but for the non-teh savy, this is the easiest way for them to get the content they want. If Firefox didn't support DRM, they would switch browsers to one that did (closed source such as IE, spyware such as Google Chrome, etc.)

Re:Yawn. (1)

PopeRatzo (965947) | about 6 months ago | (#47029099)

I'm not sure which part of Mozilla's statement is "well thought out, well argued". Is it the part where they pretty much just go against everything they've ever stood for?

And who's still using Firefox, anyway. Chrome is faster and has all the bells and whistles and Epic is faster still. The only Mozilla product I use is Thunderbird, until the day I find something better. Then, I'll never give Mozilla a second thought.

They have every right to decide to use DRM and I have every right to ignore them. I just don't need my software to treat me as untrustworthy, since I've never done anything to deserve that treatment. If' they'll put some opaque blob in their code, who knows what else is going on in there?

Re:Yawn. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47029213)

Isn't chrome going to put DRM in?

Re:Yawn. (3, Insightful)

MpVpRb (1423381) | about 6 months ago | (#47028711)

Valiantly fighting the good fight against the evil weasels who view our freedom as a threat

He is still a hero to many of us

Re:Yawn. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47028767)

RMS's version of freedom is "only do what I tell you can do"

The day stallman dies, the world will be a better place.

Re:Yawn. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47028811)

You don't have to agree with every word to get his cause is just and worth pursuing. There is a reason the Free Software Foundation focus's on Free Software and not RMS's personal agenda. RMS isn't even all that involved in the day to day running of the organization.

Re:Yawn. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47028851)

No according to him you have to agree with his perverted version of freedom and his version only.

Re:Yawn. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47028883)

YRMS isn't even all that involved in the day to day running of the organization.

Then why is he still personally holding up emacs development [gnu.org] ?

Re:Yawn. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47029067)

RMS's version of freedom is "only do what I tell you can do"

The day stallman dies, the world will be a better place.

Even if I concede that your first statement is true, your second statement does not follow from it.

At all.

RMS has flaws. We all do. But RMS has made the world a better place, so I'd say it'd be a lot more accurate to say the world will be a lesser place without him.

And I am anything BUT an RMS fanboi.

You need to grow a fucking brain.

Re:Yawn. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47029237)

I would say the world would be a much better place if he never existed. I can't wait until he's dead.

Re:Yawn. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47029233)

He's like a third party in the US. No one would ever elect them, but some of their ideas get filtered down into the mainstream.

Same with RMS. He's a nutjob, sure, but someone has to say it to give ideas to the sane (less insane?) people actually running things.

Re:Yawn. (0)

amosh (109566) | about 6 months ago | (#47028797)

If so, you're living 30 years in the past. All RMS has done in that time is valiantly fight the good fight against other people on his side who don't agree with 100% of what he says. (Citation: Slashdot's entire history)

I appreciate what he did, 30 years ago. But for my entire lifetime as a tech geek, that is literally all he has ever done. And in that time, other people have done much, much more - and done it without feeling the need to attack people who generally support their cause.

Re:Yawn. (5, Insightful)

jbn-o (555068) | about 6 months ago | (#47028821)

With the number of times /. posters point out how RMS arrived at some conclusion well before so many other people, and wrote something illustrating the point and his rationale, I would hope /. posters would recall that.

More DRM isn't going to play out well for the public as it has already failed for those who enjoy leveraging their fair-use rights, reading/viewing something in another way, and more. RMS's ethics-backed rationale against DRM and nonfree software (as opposed to a developmental methodology that accepts practical convenience at the cost of our civil liberties) is simply invaluable. Snowden's revelations bring RMS's long-held objections to nonfree software into sharp focus all the more.

Re:Yawn. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47029097)

Yawn. RMS? Attacking a much more successful group for not living up to his perceived orthodoxy? Gasp.

Thank god this is no longer a common type of article on /., at least.

You will die of cancer this year.

firefox fucking sucks... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47028733)

fsf should condemn firefox for having a shitty interface that is horrible to use, drm is just a fly on the turd.

BFD (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47028751)

Yeah and communists take umbrage with the communists who only put us on a path to socialized medicine instead of sticking us with the full-blown version immediately. So leftists disagree with one another on how fast to push leftist goals, whoopdeedo.

Straightjacket (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47028753)

Mature, Soulskill, really mature.

Once again the FSF does not understand (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47028755)

Firefox adopting DRM is not what is allowing the practice to continue, it is people consuming it. If Firefox did not support DRM directly, the content providers would offer a custom (closed source) tool that did. Until users decide not to view DRM content, the practice will continue, with or without Firefox.

What Firefox is doing is making the hard choice to be flexible and give users the opportunity to view the content or not, they are empowering their userbase to make the choice. Sadly, this means Firefox values user choice more than the FSF. I don't like DRM and I do not plan to view DRMed content, but many people will and if Firefox wants to survive they need to give their users that choice.

Re:Once again the FSF does not understand (5, Insightful)

bmo (77928) | about 6 months ago | (#47028887)

If Firefox did not support DRM directly, the content providers would offer a custom (closed source) tool that did."

So?

It's not their /job/ to do that. It's their job to make a F/OSS browser. It's in their fucking "Mozilla Manifesto"

DRM isn't Free. They have failed. And to somehow justify it by saying "someone else will do it anyway" is schoolyard "logic"/ rationalization.

--
BMO

Re:Once again the FSF does not understand (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47028931)

The second they started letting ideology instead of technology run the project is the day they failed.

Re:Once again the FSF does not understand (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47029143)

I just know that you are an american.

Re:Once again the FSF does not understand (2, Insightful)

lgw (121541) | about 6 months ago | (#47028939)

If you don't like DRM, don't consume it. But stop trying to take away my freedom to do so, thanks.

Re:Once again the FSF does not understand (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47029075)

I don't use DRM.

And stop trying to take away my 'freedom' to use Firefox without DRM-enabling features.

Fortunately, someone will probably provide a version that doesn't have this garbage, but idiots like you who sacrifice everything in the name of convenience will continue to be suckers.

Re:Once again the FSF does not understand (3, Informative)

lgw (121541) | about 6 months ago | (#47029163)

And stop trying to take away my 'freedom' to use Firefox without DRM-enabling features.

Don't click on the Netflix stream and FF won't load the offensive module. It's win-win.

Re:Once again the FSF does not understand (4, Insightful)

ifiwereasculptor (1870574) | about 6 months ago | (#47029089)

If you don't like DRM, don't consume it. But stop trying to take away my freedom to do so, thanks.

Look, I don't care much about ideological debates, but could we stop with the nonsensical wording? How exactly does one "consume" DRM? You can perhaps take advantage of, support, view content which makes use of DRM. That's all fine. But please don't "consume" DRM. You can't, not anymore than you can "consume" highways or the history of Somalia.

On a minor note, I should also point out that being against Mozilla implementing DRM support on Firefox does not "take away your freedom" to view content which makes use of DRM. Unless you're forced by someone or something to use solely Firefox for viewing all your movies or something like that, in which case you should probably reconsider the focus of your digital freedom fighting.

Re:Once again the FSF does not understand (1)

tepples (727027) | about 6 months ago | (#47029151)

Unless you're forced by someone or something to use solely Firefox for viewing all your movies or something like that

Consider the case of streaming a rented video to a Firefox OS phone. One is forced to either use DRM in Firefox, buy a different phone, or not watch the video that one paid to rent.

Re:Once again the FSF does not understand (1, Funny)

lgw (121541) | about 6 months ago | (#47029173)

Ah, obsessive literalism on /. - I never saw that coming!

Re:Once again the FSF does not understand (-1, Troll)

PapayaSF (721268) | about 6 months ago | (#47029309)

It's not their /job/ to do that. It's their job to make a F/OSS browser. It's in their fucking "Mozilla Manifesto"

Really? Huh. Based on what happened to Brendan Eich, I thought their job was to promote same-sex marriage.

Re:Once again the FSF does not understand (5, Insightful)

QuasiSteve (2042606) | about 6 months ago | (#47028989)

If Firefox did not support DRM directly, the content providers would offer a custom (closed source) tool that did.

Why would they even bother? I think it far more likely that they would simply put in a "We're sorry, but your browser is not supported at [service] at this time. Please consider using Google Chrome, Microsoft's Internet Explorer or Apple Safari. Our apologies for the inconvenience."

Given the choice between e.g. watching the latest episode of a show, or.. well.. not, guess what most people are going to do, even if you have made the dangers of DRM clear to them.

The reason is apathy... those dangers have simply not yet materialized in any way that it has truly affected people. DRM server for an 8-year old game goes down? "Well I wasn't really playing it anymore anyway." Can't save/record Netflix content and after a while you find out that the show they used to have, they no longer have, and so you can't continue watching it? "Oh well, what else is on..."

The FSF can, and should, condemn Mozilla all they want for being pragmatic; the FSF cannot be thus. But Mozilla can, and should, lest FireFox becomes increasingly marginalized. Now if the FSF could convince Apple, Google, Microsoft to not include DRM schemes...

Your the one who doesn't understand (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47029013)

Your missing the point, and the problem. Nobody is saying users should be prohibited or prevented from installing digital restrictions software. What we're saying is Mozilla shouldn't be encouraging, or enabling it. Rather they should be discouraging users from using it. Words like “spyware” and “malware” should be used to describe these anti-user digital restrictions systems.

The user should not be forced to give up control, security, and privacy just to accommodate an industries interests in making greater profit. Largely this profit is made via deception, not via preventing piracy using digital restrictions. Pirates will continue to be able to pirate regardless of widespread us of digital restriction systems.

However what digital restrictions do is hand over more and more control to the companies that be of users systems and use of the legitimately purchased goods. As an example if I purchased software in 1990 I'd generally be able to install it on any system I owned. I didn't have to re-purchase the software when I bought a new computer. Nor did I have to tell the entity anything about myself.

Re:Once again the FSF does not understand (1)

Rosyna (80334) | about 6 months ago | (#47029041)

If Firefox did not support DRM directly, the content providers would offer a custom (closed source) tool that did..

That's why flash and silverlight continue to exist now (even though MS abandoned Silverlight)

Re:Once again the FSF does not understand (1)

PopeRatzo (965947) | about 6 months ago | (#47029129)

If Firefox did not support DRM directly, the content providers would offer a custom (closed source) tool that did. Until users decide not to view DRM content, the practice will continue, with or without Firefox.

Whatever other people decide to do, I don't knowingly view DRM content in my home. There's no need. There's so much good content that doesn't have DRM, that I doubt I'll ever miss it.

Re:Once again the FSF does not understand (1)

nurb432 (527695) | about 6 months ago | (#47029249)

Until users decide not to view DRM content, the practice will continue, with or without Firefox.

its not that simple when what you want to consume is DRMized, with no (viable) alternative.

Write to Mozilla CTO Andreas Gal, he's responsible (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47028781)

I've contacted the CTO at agal@mozilla.com about this on behalf of my company and let him know that Firefox's one core advantage over all the other major browsers has been it's strong stance on freedom. More people need to speak up if there is any hope to effect change though.

If Mozilla gives up its users they've got nothing left to offer. They need to stop following Chrome and Microsoft in a downward spiral. Copying Google & Microsoft's bad ideas and practices is not how you become loved. No, it's these types of bad practices which caused users to abandon those other major browsers in the first place and move to Firefox.

It's time for Mozilla to take charge and lead again. Show its users it's got what it takes to stand up for its users. With the right choices people might actually begin to respect the browser maker again.

Any perceived gain is not worth the moral loss.

Re:Write to Mozilla CTO Andreas Gal, he's responsi (5, Interesting)

NotInHere (3654617) | about 6 months ago | (#47028993)

First, I am against DRM. I think it restricts fair use and innovation, is spyware, and defends obsolete business models.

But what Mozilla did was a good step. Almost every browser in the wild ships with a flash plugin. Flash is worse than any CDM.

I think EME improves current situation, when some websites don't rely on flash anymore.

Most DRM is a rootkit, and not a honest software which balances the content owner's and the users interests. The sandbox approach from Mozilla is very non-intrusive in comparison to other DRM systems, and other EME browsers. I never liked installing any DRM software on my computer, as I give it full access to my system, and I will never be abled to distinguish its behaviour from malware. But when the sandbox really is as restrictive to the blob as it should be, I will probably even use the DRM.

This step of Mozilla will make some content owners accept less intrusive DRM, which is good.

Re:Write to Mozilla CTO Andreas Gal, he's responsi (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47029145)

Tell Mozilla that he's anti-fanny bandit so they'll fire him and reverse his decision.

Re:Write to Mozilla CTO Andreas Gal, he's responsi (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47029211)

strong stance on freedom.

How can you lie like that? They supported a guy that believed gays were subhuman. He wanted ones that got married to be put in prison. That is what the horrible people there think like. They aren't normal. They are hateful. How can you say anti-freedom people have a strong stance on freedom. We here at /. know better. You are a liar.

Re:Write to Mozilla CTO Andreas Gal, he's responsi (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47029229)

What you're really saying is that Mozilla should screw over a majority of its users on your behalf. Get down off your high horse, don't use the non-free EME blobs, and let everyone get one with their lives.

Re:Write to Mozilla CTO Andreas Gal, he's responsi (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47029251)

If Mozilla gives up its users they've got nothing left to offer.

If Firefox no longer has any users because the browser won't do what the users need, they've got nothing to offer either.

Missing Point. (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47028799)

Can't we just compile a version without EME? I mean Stallman should have just pointed that at least Firefox is truly free unlike IE, chrome and others whilst reminding us that we can just recompile sans EME. This is yet another case of failure withing the Free community; Destruction without ensuring the core values are witheld.

Re:Missing Point. (0)

Rosyna (80334) | about 6 months ago | (#47029057)

No, RMS does not want alternatives to exist.

I have taken measures to prevent proprietary extended versions of GCC from existing. If they don't exist, people don't fall prey to them.

Citation: http://lists.gnu.org/archive/h... [gnu.org]

(It applies to all projects, not just GCC, the thread is about emacs)

Re:Missing Point. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47029273)

You're making the assumption that proprietary derivatives of GCC would qualify as "alternatives".

Missing the point; it's about not enabling (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47029073)

The Free Software Foundation want's Mozilla to stop enabling companies from taking away control from the user. These companies have malicious intent and putting up pirating as it presents a reasonable explanation as to the "need" of these systems. Digital restrictions don't actually prevent pirates from pirating content. It's that simple.

If all the major browser vendors succumb to an easy to use digital restriction mechanism. We're all going to be negatively impacted even if the browser we use don't enable easy installation of digital restriction software. Sites with mere video clips like YouTube that nobody pirates will end up using digital restrictions. News sites which at one time had digital restriction free video clips will be encumbered an unavailable to digital restriction free users. Free software users already have this problem as do users of many consumer products which don't include Adobe Flash. Lets not make this problem any worse than it already is.

Re:Missing the point; it's about not enabling (1)

tepples (727027) | about 6 months ago | (#47029171)

Without digital restrictions management, how would you recommend to enforce a time limit on watching a video? Most people aren't going to want to pay a "purchase" price (such as $20) to watch a movie once.

Actually (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47028827)

This involves for-profit corporations giving Mozilla a whole lot of money to continue improving a codebase from which completely free browsers can be easily derived (IceWeasel, IceCat, etc.)

How is this a bad thing?

Well... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47028859)

Time to start using Opera, I guess.

didn't they decline H264 on Windows a while ago? (5, Insightful)

ConstantineM (965345) | about 6 months ago | (#47028863)

So funny. Just a few short years ago, Mozilla explicitly declined to support H.264 on Windows, even if there was a free native plugin, since it'll partition the Linux users.

And now they're deciding to support DRM, just to keep the market share?

Re:didn't they decline H264 on Windows a while ago (5, Interesting)

thrillseeker (518224) | about 6 months ago | (#47028895)

I wonder if anyone technically competent and influential has recently left the company...

Re:didn't they decline H264 on Windows a while ago (1)

lgw (121541) | about 6 months ago | (#47028949)

Hey now, you can't be suggesting that political purges shouldn't be their top priority, can you comrade?

Re:didn't they decline H264 on Windows a while ago (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47028915)

They declined in 2009, but the outcry from users meant they changed their stance and are implementing it thanks to Cisco paying the license, and now they're bending again to the will of users.

Re:didn't they decline H264 on Windows a while ago (2)

NotInHere (3654617) | about 6 months ago | (#47029109)

Current support is accomplished by interfacing to the OS, the cisco binaries are not out [livejournal.com] yet, but we can hope [google.com] . And then Mozilla would still need to implement [mozilla.org] it and then it would take at least 12 weeks until it is tested and ships to the users.

Re:didn't they decline H264 on Windows a while ago (1)

NotInHere (3654617) | about 6 months ago | (#47029029)

They were tricked by Google. Google said, they would soon remove support for H.264, but never made it true.

Now they have learned I suppose that they can't influence the whole browser market, when they are alone. There was also this problem that ogv didn't work on IOS devices, and most HTML5 video pages back then were designed for the IPhone, as every website owner assumed (and still assumes) that every browser has flash. So the website owners only supported H.264 as it would run on IPhone.

the end of mozilla (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47028967)

The dumbest thing about the market share argument is that supporting the DRM blob will decrease Firefox's market share, not increase it. I certainly will not use a browser that supports it, even if I have to write my own fucking GPL3 browser from scratch. Also note that including this binary blob absolutely means that Firefox will no longer qualify as an open source program.

Re:the end of mozilla (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47028983)

Also note that including this binary blob absolutely means that Firefox will no longer qualify as an open source program.

Noted. It's a good thing I read the fucking links in the article which reveal the binary blob won't be included, and won't be downloaded without the user's consent.

the end of mozilla (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47029311)

Go for QupZilla, the GPLv3 browser you need!

Support DRM In Firefox (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47028969)

its fork time

Re:Support DRM In Firefox (1)

SeaFox (739806) | about 6 months ago | (#47028991)

On Windows, Pale Moon could be a good base to start from. Wouldn't even have to back out the Australis UI.

The code's open source (0)

rsilvergun (571051) | about 6 months ago | (#47028981)

You can build it without the non-free stuff if you want. It's fine that the FSF is condemning this. It's sorta against everything they stand for, which I get. But I can't get too cheesed off about this since I can always run iceweasel (or was it something else these days...)?

Give up your fantasy where DRM isn't required (3, Insightful)

Guspaz (556486) | about 6 months ago | (#47028997)

Firefox would suffer a large drop in market share if they refused to support features that a significant portion of their userbase would consider critical. Being known as "that browser that doesn't work with Netflix" isn't the road to success.

If you don't like DRM, that's fine. The average joe doesn't care, and he's going to drop a browser in a heartbeat if it's stopping him from watching House of Cards or whatever other content he wants.

Meanwhile, in the real world (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47029005)

Most people’s reaction to the Mozilla & DRM debacle makes me want to firmly and repeatedly smash my head against my desk. I’ll outline why:

1. People who can’t (be bothered to) read

Most of the criticism comes from people who haven’t been bothered to go and read what Mozilla’s written about the issue (or just suck at it). If these people had, we’d have no complaints of Mozilla forcing users to use DRM, bundling propitiatory code, or ‘giving up’ on user’s freedom and rights.

Essentially all that is happening is Adobe’s CDM is going to be implemented as an optional, monitored, special-type-of-plugin.

I’d say it’s no different from Flash, but it is going to be different. It’s going to be more secure, and presumably less buggy (being a ‘feature’ of Firefox). Once Firefox implements EME, there’s really no reason for Flash or Silverlight to continue to exist. Sure, this setup sucks. But I think Flash sucks more.

As for ‘giving up’: Mozilla can only be influential if it has influence. The primary source of Mozilla’s influence is the number of people using Firefox, which isn’t currently very big. Not implementing EME won’t help that. As others have said, this is not the hill to die on.

This all leads nicely onto my second point:

2. People who use Chrome

One of the best Tweets I found on the issue was somebody threatening to switch to Google Chrome because of this. I think the irony here is clear.

Yet, what astounds me more is not people threatening to switch, but people already using Chrome who want Mozilla to protect their rights.

Google is a for-profit company which exists to exploit users data. It’s collaborated with the NSA. It’s helped to lead the charge with Microsoft and Netflix for EME. Why on Earth, then, would you give Google support by using Chrome?

This may seem hypocritical from someone who uses Google’s services. Yet Google Search, Maps, Android (and so-on) are unparalleled. Chrome isn’t.

The single easiest thing you can do to support Mozilla is to use Firefox. It gives Mozilla the influence it needs to fight.

3. People who think Mozilla can single-handedly ‘change the industry’

I hate DRM as much as the next guy and I think copyright is fundamentally broken - it’s why I’m a member of the Pirate Party, it’s why I donate to ORG and EFF, and it’s through these avenues I expect to see real change.

Mozilla can only change the industry with user support. And users don’t care about DRM, they only care that video works. We clearly saw this with WebM and H.264.

There’s work to be done, but it can’t be done if Mozilla loses its influence, and it can only be done with the support (not ire) of other organisations.

Users want DRM. We should give them DRM. That doesn’t mean Mozilla supports DRM, and it doesn’t mean Mozilla can’t educate users about what DRM means (and there are some very good signs of that being bundled into Webmaker soon).
In conclusion

Don’t be disappointed in Mozilla.

Be disappointed in Google, Microsoft and Apple for implementing this first, and backing Mozilla into a corner.

Be disappointed in Netflix and its friends (including, surprisingly, the BBC!) calling for DRM.

Be disappointed in your elected representatives creating an environment where it is potentially illegal to say specific things about DRM.

Now go out, educate users about what DRM means, and why it’s bad. Use Firefox, and donate time or money to Mozilla to give it the influence it needs. Support organisations (such as EFF, ORG, FSF, FSFE) and political parties who represent your views on DRM and Copyright reform.

This is by no means the end of the battle over DRM and Copyright - it’s just the beginning.

Re:Meanwhile, in the real world (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47029207)

One of the best Tweets I found on the issue was somebody threatening to switch to Google Chrome because of this. I think the irony here is clear.

If we're going to use a browser that promotes DRM it might as well be the one with an objectively superior code base. Mozilla can't compete with Google on technology alone and there's really no reason for them to exist if they're just going to be another corporate whore.

Being true to themselves.. (1)

amightywind (691887) | about 6 months ago | (#47029019)

The homosexuals at Mozilla are in firm control.

I've Seen This Movie Before. (1, Interesting)

enter to exit (1049190) | about 6 months ago | (#47029091)

Here we go again. The usual FOSS battle between impossible idealism and pragmatism.

If Firefox wants to allow for a plugin that enables DRM, what of it? The users can make their own choice. They're not including it in the browser.

I know it's popular to pay lip service to the FSF but if they had their way we would all be hypocrites. Just posting on /. with all the evil minifed javascript would make us sinners. Of course, the FSF morals don't extend to it having qualms about taking [fsf.org] HP, Google and IBM dirty money.

The idea that software needs to free is bullshit, i want to run whatever i want on my system. Don't you? I don't want my morals decided by the FSF.

Re:I've Seen This Movie Before. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47029195)

If Firefox wants to allow for a plugin that enables DRM, what of it?

If FireFox doesn't want to allow for a plugin that enables DRM, what of it?

If the FSF says this is a bad thing, what of it?

What a stupid question. The entire problem is that this further legitimizes DRM.

The idea that software needs to free is bullshit

Not if you want to control your computing, have the opportunity to understand what's happening, be able to modify and distribute software, and decrease the likelihood that malicious backdoors and other nasty things are present without your knowledge. Non-free software is immoral, and the whole NSA debacle only further proves that.

i want to run whatever i want on my system. Don't you?

Yes. And the FSF isn't going to stop you, though they might criticize your decision.

I don't want my morals decided by the FSF.

The FSF does not decide your morals, and it cannot do so. That doesn't even make any sense.

What they can do is educate people in an attempt to get them on their side, which is what's happening now. And what are you doing? Expressing your disagreement. I can't fathom how some people act so shocked when others express their opinions (Claiming that they're forcing their morals on others, or some other such nonsense.), but then don't realize they're doing the same thing.

Re:I've Seen This Movie Before. (0)

enter to exit (1049190) | about 6 months ago | (#47029305)

The FSF wants to stop me from running non-free software. They can't stop me, but they would like to. They would like it to be impossible to run non-free software. That's the whole point of the FSF. It's why they have a list of kosher distributions, Debian doesn't make the list because it allows for the installation of non-free repositories. They would like to choose for users what is morally acceptable to install.

My stance on software is less restrictive than the FSF, I want to run whatever i want regardless of license. The FSF wants me to run only free software. They by definition have the more restrictive view.

Anyway, arguing with a FSF zealot is like arguing with a religious extremist, they think they are the only ones with a valid view and that everyone is corrupt and blind for not seeing "the truth". You seem to be a sort of FSF apologetic.

"Gays are subhuman" (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47029095)

According to the person that they elected to rule over them and control Firefox. The people there are hateful Republicans. All of them. Fortunately we were able to fight for tolerance and get that moron fired since tolerance of intolerance is intolerance. Of course the same hateful people are still there so they are going to of course keep doing hateful things.

Treat DRM A Little Like Self-Signed Certificates (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47029115)

I don't mind Mozilla adding DRM support in for those users who want it, but it should be treated a bit like self-signed certificates currently are -- there should be a warning raised before displaying any DRM content that alerts the user to the possible consequences of viewing that content.

Damn right... (-1, Troll)

mythosaz (572040) | about 6 months ago | (#47029197)

...and while you're at it, Firefox should disable any support of passwords, of any kind, for anything, as it is a tool for digital rights management.

https, of course, should be next.

fork? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47029199)

How about offer two versions of Firefox and see which one people choose?

I've Heard This Before (1)

LifesABeach (234436) | about 6 months ago | (#47029219)

There was a time when one used IE, but along came Mozilla. Mozilla proved more successfull because it was DRM intollerant. I guess I have to find a browser that is DRM intollerant; any suggestions?

I'll ditch it (1)

fox171171 (1425329) | about 6 months ago | (#47029287)

loss of browser market share

They'll lose market share for implementing DRM.

Fork you, Mozilla! (3, Insightful)

ikhider (2837593) | about 6 months ago | (#47029303)

Most do not understand about DRM, and that is what Mozilla is acting upon--complacency. Sure, you have a handful who understand the dangers of DRM, and why it is important to have a free internet and free open software but not enough. That is why Mozilla caves in, not enough users hold them accountable. Most of their funding comes from Google anyway. More need to be educated about this. When Stallman started the GNU operating system, their numbers were few. Now GNU is a bigger force. It may be time for another browser that respects the users' freedom. To Mozilla, I say, Fork You!
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