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I wonder how hostile people will be once the H.264 patents expire. (Remember GIF hate?) It will happen within most of our lifetimes.

I would expect the hostility to rise towards the end as you realise that you're still locked in to a format that is no longer technically competitive and people start dropping support for it in ways that inconvenience you and force you onto an unnecessary upgrade treadmill e.g. see current state of mpeg-2 support and the near future for Xvid/MPEG4.

They won't all expire until around the end of 2017, according to this: http://www.tunequest.org/a-big-list-of-mp3-patents/20070226/

wait, did the grandparent originally say something about MP3?

h264's last patent will expire in november 2027 (or september 2028, but I think there's some technicality that makes that one not count) according to http://scratchpad.wikia.com/wiki/MPEG_patent_lists#H.264_pat...

That's a really long time from now.

MP3 will go there first.

Not necessarily. High profile patents can always be made to expire, there is surely some prior art stashed somewhere.

And if that fails, Google can always buy a couple of senators to fix it.

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