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Tagesschau.de awarded for the use of Open Standards

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Today the ARD internet platform Tagesschau.de will receive an award for the use of Open Standards at the "Document Freedom Day". The prize is awarded by the Free Software Foundation Europe (FSFE) and the Foundation for a Free Information Infrastructure e.V. (FFII) for offering the broadcasted shows also in the free video format "Ogg Theora".

In Berlin FSFE and FFII will hand over a certificate and a cake with the "rOgg On!" label on to Sven Bruns, technical manager at tagesschau.de. In Hamburg, Sabine Klein, vice editorial director of tagesschau.de will accept a DFD cake on behalf of the editorial team.

"In times of non-free video formats still dominating the internet, tagesschau.de is an example for other broadcasting corporations how to provide unrestricted access to their media.", says Matthias Kirschner, Germany-Coordinator of FSFE.

In contrast to proprietary video formats Ogg Theora is free video format that every software producer is allowed to support without licensing requirements. Therefore software users are not dependent on a single software vender but can apply Ogg Theora on various devices.

Stephan Uhlmann, member of the FFII board: "It's convenient to support the currently dominating format instead of using Open Standards. But this domination brings along patents whose exclusive control disables alternative software solutions and later innovations. In contrast to this users of Open Standards have free choice of their software. But no matter whether Apple, Microsoft or GNU/Linux: the videos of tagesschau.de will always be playable."

Ogg Theora is supported by all media players in common GNU/Linux distributions. One can also play Ogg-files on Microsoft Windows or Apple's Mac OS X by using the VLC player. Furthermore, many modern webbrowsers directly support the format.

On tagesschau.de, all regular videos are available as Ogg Theora. At tagesschau24, videos are directly embedded via the new webstandard HTML5. In other parts of the website, it still needs to be manually set to "download the file" and then the format "Medium (Ogg)" has to be clicked.

"We hope that all other multimedia contents – especially the media library and live streams – will soon be available in a free format. Moreover we would be glad about Ogg Theora or WebM videos in higher quality levels", indicates Matthias Kirschner.

Press pictures of the award ceremony will be available March 30. at 2pm. on a separate site.