More Bad News For Adobe & Flash – Wikipedia Is Going Open Video

Mar 17th, 2010 | By | Category: Internet TV, Video, Video Podcasts

Adobe already has trouble on its hands over Apple’s decision to not support Flash on the iPhone and the iPad – and the general public’s “meh” response.

Now Adobe’s got bigger Flash problems.

The Open Video Alliance, which includes Mozilla, Kaltura, Miro, and Yale Law School, are joining forces to bring video to Wikipedia – Flash-free.

Today, the Open Video Alliance launched a mass campaign to bring video to Wikipedia:

Unfortunately for Adobe, though, the projects are all based around the open standards HTML 5 + Theora.

While the popularity of Apple’s devices is marginalizing Flash, Apple is at the leading/bleeding edge.

As Google, YouTube and now Wikipedia commit to supporting open video, the days of Flash being the de facto standard for Internet video are numbered.

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14 Responses to “More Bad News For Adobe & Flash – Wikipedia Is Going Open Video”

  1. Remco says:

    This mostly sucks for IPad and IPhone users because those won’t play Theora video’s. Only .h264
    Also as a side note: this is really old news.

  2. Two points

    1. Flash is here to stay..Casual web based games are not going anywhere soon and most of them are built on Flash..

    2. Adobe does not make money from Flash installation. Instead, they monetize from the sale of multimedia tools. Flash or HTML5 does not matter..

  3. WD says:

    Like anyone really cares about video on Wikipedia?

  4. Lars says:

    Personally, I find it pretty ridiculous to call this “bad news” for Adobe or Flash (not to mention saying it is “bigger problems” than Flash not being on the iPad). It’s expected that wikipedia would prefer as open and standardized formats as possible, rather than Flash, and can hardly come as a surprise to anyone, including Adobe.

  5. Tony says:

    Why isn’t this titled “More bad news for iPhone, iPod & iPad”? Theora video will not play on the iPhone, iPod or iPad. Isn’t that more of a story? In fact, you could make a strong argument that this is great for Flash because it’s another example of how fractured the HTML5′s video standard is. The fact that no one can agree on what the standard codec will be will only bode well for Flash. Some sites are using Theora others H.264. As long as there is a split, plugins will be used for video.

  6. Jason Tzingt says:

    Looks like the Flash fanboys are out! I didn’t even know that there were Flash fanboys!

    FYI – Kaltura has launched a new site about HTML5 video, too:

    http://www.html5video.org/

  7. John Dowdell says:

    Hi James, as others here noted, Wikipedia has specified Ogg Vorbis and Ogg Theora for a very long time. What’s new is the push to get people to compress to it and upload it to Wikipedia.

    I don’t think Apple’s silo is “marginalizing Flash”, so much as the fact that every other manufacturer is marginalizing Apple. Apple’s behavior has actually helped push Flash adoption in the larger world.

    In the Open Video Alliance’s announcement, this may have been the most significant line, both for its divisiveness and for its naivete:
    “If you watch a video on a Wikipedia article but you aren’t on a browser like Firefox or Chrome, it will play in a Java player (it’s pretty awkward) but it will also point you to Firefox, so that you can get a better browser. Another win for openness!”
    http://openvideoalliance.org/2010/03/lets-get-video-on-wikipedia/?l=en

    If they had only listened to me on the very first day this VIDEO tag was proposed, they’d have had a smoother path… codecs and workflows should not be such an issue today:
    http://blogs.adobe.com/jd1/archives/2007/12/easier-video.html

    jd/adobe

    • elliot says:

      It seems like there’s a big trend away from Flash for video and page effects to HTML.

      Is Adobe going to offer tools for this or just fight with the organizations that go in that direction?

  8. Matthew Fabb says:

    Bad news for not just iPad and iPhone users, but most mobile users, as I’m not aware of any mobile device that includes Theora codec. Not to mention I don’t think there is any hardware video decoding for Theora like there is H.264, so even if any mobile devices get the Theora codec (say with the upcoming mobile Firefox) the play back is going to be horribly bad. Also bad for any Safari or IE users who won’t be able to view the videos.

  9. John Dowdell says:

    [Resubmitting nine hours later with broken URLs, in case I had triggered a spam filter.]

    Hi James, as others here noted, Wikipedia has specified Ogg Vorbis and Ogg Theora for a very long time. What’s new is the push to get people to compress to it and upload it to Wikipedia.

    I don’t think Apple’s silo is “marginalizing Flash”, so much as the fact that every other manufacturer is marginalizing Apple. Apple’s behavior has actually helped push Flash adoption in the larger world.

    In the Open Video Alliance’s announcement, this may have been the most significant line, both for its divisiveness and for its naivete:
    “If you watch a video on a Wikipedia article but you aren’t on a browser like Firefox or Chrome, it will play in a Java player (it’s pretty awkward) but it will also point you to Firefox, so that you can get a better browser. Another win for openness!”
    h ttp: //openvideoalliance.org/2010/03/lets-get-video-on-wikipedia/?l=en

    If they had only listened to me on the very first day this VIDEO tag was proposed, they’d have had a smoother path… codecs and workflows should not be such an issue today:
    h ttp: //blogs.adobe.com/jd1/archives/2007/12/easier-video.html

    jd/adobe

  10. notboss says:

    @Jason Tzingt
    From the link you posted about Kaltura’s HTML 5 blog:

    “A base component of the Kaltura HTML5 javascript library bridges this gap, by cascading to an underlining Flash player in browsers that do not support the native HTML5 video player.”

    They also transcode video to other codecs as part of their fall back mechanism – not just Ogg. So Flash and the codecs it supports have become a sort of baseline for Web video. Or, put another way, Kaltura’s HTML 5 player always works because they can always fall back to Flash.

    It’s great to see progress with HTML. It’s not so exciting to read inaccurate commentary saying the alliance is going to provide a “flash-free” alternative – they aren’t. Again, Flash is the baseline for Web video and Kaltura makes good use of it when they need to.

  11. ERP says:

    After the announcement that Adobe will cease support for its Flash … blow for Google TV which, frankly, doesn’t need any more bad news.

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