Currently, we are handling this a bit inconsistently in gst-plugins-meta ebuilds, maybe would be interesting to use "encode" USE flag to pull in encoders only when it's enabled. What do you think?
Imho, this ebuilds has degenerated in an incontrollable USE flag fest.
We should retry discussing its split or plain removal.
Iirc it was intended to be use by packages using gstreamer to have a package responsible for all optional dependencies, but not to USE-depend on anything in it and leave applications hard-depend on plugin they do need.
This policy is broken by our own ebuilds btw: brasero, gnome-media.
If we split it (someone was working on this idea iirc), shoud we have:
* decode (mp3, vorbis, aac, ...)
* input/outups (jack, pulse, alsa, oss, ...)