Here is the poignant question posed by John Gruber:
5. Who is happy about this?
I suggest that every person who has ever watched a video online stop and think about this situation. Where do you go to watch online video? Oh, wait, it doesn’t matter because it is encoded in H.264 if it is not in the old VP6 codec or WMV. H.264 has presented itself as a basically ubiquitous standard, being supported by almost every browser, on almost every platform, including mobile.
To add to this fact, H.264 was just brought to my attention by a non-technical client who is currently piloting flash, encoded in H.264, for the future of their live streaming infrastructure. They are very happy with Flash, but asked my opinion of the technology behind what they called an “international standard,” H.264. Yesterday’s news from Google is the reason why I told them, among other things, that as a conservative organization they need to stick with flash for the time being. The fact is that moving from Flash to H.264 in terms of hardware is simple (as long as you have to back end to support either standard). What is not so simple right now seems to be taking the pulse of what is the video standard of the future. This is a return to the VHS vs Betamax debate, HD-DVD vs Blu-Ray. The only difference is the fact that the H.264 has a command over the minds of general consumers since it has been used and publicized by numerous companies including the one that holds every person’s interest, Apple.
I believe that consumers need to start taking a move active role in the technologies that they are using on the Internet, in particular for viewing video, not simply follow Google blindly just because they are Google.
There is no better reason to not do something
There is no better reason to try
There is no better reason to fight
Against tyranny and strife
Removal is often the goal
Removal is often the challenge
Removal is often not enough
To completely fix what hangs in the balance
But it can bring about great change
But it can bring light
But it can bring great joys
In the darkness of the night
And so I live with friction
And so I live with what is hard
And so I live with what I love
But I stay upon my guard