A Look at the Multimedia Format Standard Fights

iVast sale highlights MPEG-4 woes

Digital media start-up iVast has quietly ceased U.S. operations, highlighting the challenging market for multimedia products based on the emerging MPEG-4 standard.

[…] The moves come amid weak demand for MPEG-4-based products, belying some of the hype over technology that offers substantial compression improvements over the current MPEG-2 standard used by most digital cable providers and DVD manufacturers. MPEG standards are developed and approved by the Moving Pictures Experts Group.

Ben Silva, a former iVast employee who is now vice president of worldwide sales for Moirai Media, said iVast struggled in the United States in part because of reluctance among U.S. companies to back new technology and use it.

[…] “The North America market was not there to sustain” MPEG-4, Silva said. He added that the market won’t pick up until “the U.S. stops waiting for the next best thing.”

[…] The delays have helped Microsoft gain traction for its competing Windows Media formats, Kaufhold added. “In the near term, Microsoft appears to have the upper hand.”

Declaratory Judgments and Copyright

After the 321 Studio loss at the District Court level, I’m starting to wonder whether suits for declaratory judgment in copyright are just not successful. Eldred, N2H2 and now this.

I’m curious — has there been a successful suit for declaratory judgment in copyright? IP? Pre-DMCA versus post-DMCA? Let me know