The Web standards group is going ahead with its Encrypted Media Extensions technology despite some opposition, arguing it's a step in the right direction.
The World Wide Web Consortium has decided to go ahead with a technology that will let companies like Netflix stream encrypted video using Web sites -- against the wishes of the Free Software Foundation, Electronic Frontier Foundation, and 25,600 petition signatories.
The Web standards group announced the move Thursday, to nobody's surprise. Entertainment-industry players had approached the group three years ago to discuss the technology, Microsoft has been helping develop it, and Google already has built the specification, called Encrypted Media Extensions (EME) into Chrome.
The standard doesn't actually handle encryption and digital rights management (DRM) to govern who gets to see or copy video. Instead, it provides a standard mechanism that lets a browser call upon a plug-in that handles the work. In other words, it enables encryption but doesn't do the encryption itself.