Miro Internet TV Blog

Video: The Mission Behind Miro

October 12th, 2007 by Dean Jansen

Last week I recorded Nicholas Reville, our executive director, giving his presentation on Miro and the importance of open video.

If you’re wondering how a piece of software could possibly pave the way to a more independent and democratic media space, definitely watch this video.

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9 Responses to “Video: The Mission Behind Miro”

  1. CWS says:

    One Comment:

    1) So far as “play all file types” is part of the goal for Miro, Miro has overlooked something big for mac users. I have yet to figure out a way to play flash (flv) files through quicktime (and therefore quicktime based players such as miro) without installing Perian (www.perian.org) but Perian only runs on OSX 10.4.7 or higher.

    In other words, if your a mac user with 10.3, you can’t watch flash (flv) files (i.e. all youtube video) through the miro player. That is VERY limiting. Before a 1.0 official release, a component should be written for 10.3 mac users that will allow quicktime and therefore the miro player to play flash (flv)

    Two Questions:

    1) To what extent does the Participatory Culture Foundation respect Intellectual Property? How does PCF respond to the critic who will argue that programs such as Miro aid people with both positive and negative intentions. Miro aids users who wish to download, burn, and sell HD copies of copyrighted television shows for example. Are there any steps being taken to stem the flow of copyrighted material through the Miro player? Can Miro stand up legally, or is it relying on a similar argument to Napster? That they are not the source of the copyrighted material.

    2) What about the argument that Miro makes for “more exciting television” Yes, certainly on one level, but if copyrighted television material is undercut because Networks are losing money to illegal DVDs, and ultimately people stop watching it on TV and that lowers the cost of advertising, does there come a point where there isn’t a budget anymore for quality Network TV?

    I understand, having worked at PBS, just how non-cost effective programming can be and as a small independent filmmaker, understand just how cost-effective it can be!

    I am rooting for Miro, and open democratic internet television, but I am curious to hear the PCF’s responses to these inevitable challenges.

    Perhaps directing me to other literature or press is best.

    Sorry for the length

  2. Nicholas Reville says:

    Hi CWS,

    Thanks for the thoughtful comments.

    Comment 1: We use Perian to play FLV on mac, but we don’t run the Perian project, so we aren’t in a position to provide support for OSX 10.3.

    Question 1: Like any web browser, ftp client, or email client, Miro is content neutral. We have no interest in trying to monitor or restrict what people can use it for– that openness is crucial to the power of the internet. That said, we do not allow channels of unauthorized content in our Guide and we do not provide technical support for unauthorized-use related issues.

    Question 2: We don’t expect that copyrighted shows will be undercut. In fact, like any creative work, everything in the Miro Guide is copyrighted as soon as it is created and is it then offered by the publishers for free download. We’ve seen an explosion of creation and creativity as video has moved online. I expect that we’ll see increasing levels of creative work from both independent and corporate producers over the next several years.

  3. [...] Nicholas Reville, Executive Director of the PCF (Participatory Culture Foundation), the maker of Miro recorded a brief but interesting presentation on Miro, the product and its mission. [...]

  4. Are there any plans to build more of a television interface into Miro? Something like Front Row?

    Either way, I still plan to hook up a mac mini to an HDTV and run Miro.

    Keep up the good work.

  5. [...] den Machern gibt es jetzt ein kleines Video zur Software: “The Mission Behind Miro“. Last week I recorded Nicholas Reville, our executive director, giving his presentation on [...]

  6. [...] Video: The Mission Behind Miro The Participatory Culture Foundation the creator of miro has created a video to explain their mission [...]

  7. mike says:

    Just wondering if a “mobile Miro” is on the roadmap.. just like Mozilla is turning to a mobile version of Firefox….

  8. Tristan says:


    I think you should have a transcript of your talk made available for people. It’s a way to help people quote you and also understand your message, even if English is not their primary language.

    Other than that, your message is *very* interesting. Keep up the good job!

  9. Dean Jansen says:

    Good idea, Tristan — anyone have some spare time to transcribe this talk?

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