News.com invents "MPEG-4 backers vs. Windows Media license" protest

Apparently desperate for news, a staff writer for News.com took a couple comments by the CEO of iVast, put it together with Microsoft’s new licensing terms for Windows Media, and somehow turned it into a “protest” by “MPEG-4 backers” against the new license. Apparently desperate for editors and/or fact-checkers, News.com ran it.

News.com’s story is just irresponsible journalism. The idea of a protest is ridiculous, as anybody having anything to do with MPEG-4 has always known that Microsoft wasn’t just going to cede the non-Windows device market — the only question has been when Microsoft was going to license Windows Media for non-Windows platforms and how much they would charge, and now we know.

Dangerously, other news sites are spreading the News.com story as fact. Slashdot posted a reference to the story, upgrading the “protest” to a “war” while they were at it. Insanely Great Mac also swallowed the News.com story hook/line/sinker and, in a fit of anti-competitive hysteria, started whining about “predatory pricing” just because (surprise!) Microsoft’s licensing terms are a little more reasonable than MPEG-4’s. Sheesh! | News.com story | Insanely Great Mac story | Slashdot story