One of the biggest problems with some news today is telling the signal from the noise. It would be fair to say that around the story of the recent iplayer changes, there has been a lot of noise. Some of the noise is people wondering what just happened? While some of the other noise is people putting one and one together and making ten.
So to clear things up once and for all on the recent changes, Ian Hunter Managing Editor, BBC Online,
fills in all the details on the BBC internet blog
Most of the post is about our commitment to open source, which is worth pointing out - has never changed. But there is also a chunk about the 3rd-party applications here...
We also implement a range of technologies that attempt to check that
our content is being played out in iPlayer, and not in an unauthorised
3rd-party application. This is because we need to be as certain as we
can be that our content rights restrictions are being respected.
This is the key to the concerns being expressed at the moment:
before we allow a device to access our content we need to check that it
is iPlayer and not an application which might break our rules - for
example, by storing programmes beyond the 30 day limit, or playing them
outside the UK.
We know that a number of applications have been making unauthorised
use of some media types and we have tightened security accordingly -
this was done for several of the formats and content delivery types,
not just for Flash. The result was that some applications that 'deep
link' to our content may no longer work.
It's important to note that this has nothing to do with Flash, and
it's nothing to do with support for open-source. In fact we continue to
make our content available as H.264 or SSL, both of them open standards
that have nothing to do with Flash or with Adobe. It's simply that the
first people to be affected by this change happened to be linking to
our Flash streams, which now have similar protection levels to our
Later in the post, Ian says...
unfortunately one of the applications that stopped working was XBMC, an open-source media player.
Indicating that the change was not directed at XBMC or the open source community. Talking of changes, the Totem plugin
issue was also in fact a bug and not in anyway related to the iplayer changes.
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