About

This website is an additional distribution channel for the Occupy Los Angeles Media Committee, and established to address the following concerns:

Community

This website supports local media and technology companies, artists and authors. Hosting and domain name services are from the companies Namecheap and Dreamhost, two Los Angeles based organizations. Our greatest concern is to represent the voice of those in Los Angeles, and participation and discussion is largely thus at the General Assembly and Committee meetings.

Privacy

We do not collect visitor data to be sold to advertisers! This website is dedicated to your privacy, we do not include tracking and social media share buttons to protect, and not further encourage, your information being sold as a commodity.

Keeping statistics isn’t our greatest concern, and thus we do not “make it difficult” to distribute videos by your own means, including making copies that can be viewable in any video player of your choosing. We encourage the use of Tor, for online anonymity, and enabling privacy settings in your browser, to jam the “robot” statistics gathering.

Free Culture

We take copyright laws seriously and will not post material that has not be given permission to distribute. Furthermore, we will only post videos that are licensed under the terms of a Creative Commons license, or otherwise free of known copyright restrictions. Thus, this entire website remains redistributable, free and open.

Videos on this website are played using entirely community supported software that is not privately owned. Videos are encoded into the free video format WebM. The source code for this website is entirely available and is using WordPress with the AWE Door theme (coming soon) and AWE Video plugin built for the needs of this website. Video controls are from the VideoJS project.

Many videos on this website are hosted in more than one place. We encourage the continued support of this so that information exists far and wide, including to those with poor access to the Internet or computers. Videos that are genuinely enjoyed will achieve higher redundancy, and stand the test of time. Every copy of a video is a vote to keep the video from being forgotten.

Software Patents

Software patents create twice the work to maintain this website. In the goal to support all web browsers it becomes necessary to support encoding into two separate video codecs, twice the disk space, twice the transcoding time, twice the work to ensure quality of service of the videos. This work becomes unfeasible and limits the distribution of software used for this website, especially the task of transcoding video.

Two actions are possible to solve these issues without sacrificing end user-experience: collectively move to using free software web browsers such as Firefox and Chrome; or, demand and end to software patents all together.

The H.264 codec is necessary for software distributed by Apple and Microsoft that have obtained a patent license for software distribution. Encoding to the H.264 video codec is done in two ways, by using software that has been granted a license; or to manually compile from source code for the software, which then can not be distributed. By supporting video codecs that are not protected from patent trolling, we are not moving in a path away from Youtube, and towards freedom, but are recreating the environment that makes it necessary for Youtube to exist. Competing with Youtube isn’t our goal. Software is not used to divide each other, but as a way to build solidarity. In this goal, the software running this website needs to be in no way limited from free distribution, so that your video channel really is your channel, or rather our channel.

There are software patents for all video formats; MPEG LA is currently patent trolling the H.264 video codec and restricting distribution of software that is capable of encoding the format. Apple and Microsoft fully support H.264; including writing plugins for Firefox and Chrome. While they may say they are agnostic of video codecs, it’s not true, and they are against software freedom that is for the public benefit. It is one of their tools of oppression, all driving at supporting their own profits against our interests.

Google has obtained the VP8 codec and has released the patents rights to everyone for distribution, except to those who enforce their own patents against the codec. This creates a deadlock between enforcing patents, what needs to happen is for software patents to be nullified completely. This will mean that Apple and Microsoft can fully get behind the VP8 codec without fear from Google, and for there to be no patent ownership over any video codecs enforceable in software distribution. It will also mean that Firefox, Chromium or any other free software web browser can support H.264 and will not prohibit the software from being able to be distributed by everyone equally.

 



Stop Software Patents

Stand with Firefox and Chrome and demand an end to software patents! No more encoding videos into two separate codecs, and limiting the distribution of transcoding software that stifles fully embracing video on the web.

Homeowner Bill of Rights

On July 11th, 2012: Attorney General Kamala D. Harris announced that the Homeowner Bill of Rights, which will protect homeowners and borrowers during the mortgage and foreclosure process, was signed into law today by Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. Read More