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[playogg-discuss] Playogg template letter: please comment

From: Holmes Wilson
Subject: [playogg-discuss] Playogg template letter: please comment
Date: Wed, 11 Nov 2009 14:58:34 -0500 (EST)
User-agent: SquirrelMail/1.4.13

Wanted to share a letter I sent to a publisher offering mp3s but not oggs
of an author podcast. Eager for your thoughts on using this as a template
in future campaigns.


Dear []:

I noticed that your service only provides books in MP3 format. MP3 is a
format covered by software patents, and it doesn't work on my GNU/Linux
computer, since free software developers face penalties for distributing
players for patented formats--even when they write those players

There's a new audio format called Ogg Vorbis that is not restricted by any
patents. It also achieves a much higher sound quality for a given file
size than MP3, and it works in a wide range of portable audio players,
cellphones, and car stereos. It also works--without the need for any
special plugins like Flash or Quicktime--in almost 25% of the world's web
browsers. Wikipedia is exclusively using Ogg Vorbis (and a similar video
format Ogg Theora) for all its audio and video offerings. In other words,
this is something that is proven to work on large sites, at a large scale.

The costs of converting your audiobooks to Ogg format are pretty minimal,
it could be a small project for your team, and I'd be happy to provide
them with some tools that could help.

My organization, The Free Software Foundation, has an interest in
promoting adoption of these free formats, and we may be able to arrange
publicity for your announcement and your ongoing offering, if you decide
to undertake this project.

Please let me know if you can commit to offering your books as Ogg within
the year.

More info here:


Holmes Wilson

FSF Campaigns Manager

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