The BBC, an organisation that in the past has championed open standards – according to their own blog – has pledged its support for the W3C proposal put forward by big media giants last week, in an effort to have the standards group push for DRM restrictions on HTML.
The reason this has got many people annoyed at the proposal, is it would potentially allow companies to lock down content for specific groups of people, restricting who can see what. With the BBC pushing for something like this, it could mean that it restricts access to services like the iPlayer – were it to move to a fully HTML5 setup.
As Computer World blogger and open source proponent Glynn Moody writes: “How does the BBC justify using the money paid as a non-optional tax by me and my fellow licence-payers to lock us out from content that we have paid for?”
The BBC is often held up by Brits and those abroad as an upstanding TV service, even if it does have its fair share of drek – it is markedly better in its values and programming than many other broadcasting companies. However, as Moody writes, if the BBC starts circling its digital wagons, how many people will happily continue to pay a license fee if they may not even be able to access the content?
KitGuru Says: Perhaps the reason the BBC wants the DRM via HTML is so that it can prevent those without a license fee from viewing?