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Digital Rights Management

Essay by   •  June 4, 2011  •  Essay  •  1,277 Words (6 Pages)  •  1,208 Views

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Digital Rights Management

There are many issues concerning digital rights management in this internet or online generation. But what exactly is digital rights management? 'Digital Rights Management, or DRM, is a class of technologies that allow rights owners to set and enforce terms by which people use their intellectual property. Rights owners are typically copyright-holding companies like music, film, book or software publishers. They use DRM to control how documents, entire software programs, or even e-mails are used.'

In media production and publishing, content is information and experiences that may provide value for an end-user/audience in specific contexts. Content may be delivered via any medium such as the internet, television, and audio CDs, as well as live events such as conferences and stage performances. The word content is used to identify and quantify various formats and genres of information as manageable value-adding components of media. Content management, or CM, is a set of processes and technologies that support the evolutionary life cycle of content information.

Often times media companies use DRM to control piracy of their content by restricting users' ability to copy it, though it can also be used to create new business models like subscriptions to a large library of music.

DRM is a two-part scheme. It relies on encryption to protect the content itself and authentication systems to ensure that only authorized users can unlock the files. When applied, DRM scrambles the data in a file rendering it unreadable to anyone without the appropriate unlocking 'key'. Authentication systems position between users and the decryption keys, ensuring that only people with the proper permissions or authorization can obtain a 'the' decryption key.

Imagine encryption to be a box. You need the keys lock your important things inside the box that you want to keep as a secret. You can do it in two ways, either use the same lock to lock and unlock the box (symmetric) or use a different key to unlock the box (asymmetric). The asymmetric key algorithm is a more secure strategy. In additional, what really matters is the protection of your keys. If your private key gets lost into the internet then anyone can just decrypt, say, your Blu-Ray movies.

Without a username and password or if a file has been decrypted too many times, the system will not provide the key. This means music files with DRM, for example, can be swapped over the internet and remain unusable to those who have not paid for them. It also means only authorized programs and portable players can use the tracks. Music without DRM, like the popular MP3 music format, retains the ability to be played regardless of the number of times or to whom they have been copied.

Another method digital contents can be protected is through watermarking. Digital watermarking is a signal or code that is hidden within a digital signal such as digital audio or a digital image portion that contains identifying information.

'Digital watermark would not be ruined as if signal altered the hidden information could no longer be determined by any imperceptible processing of the overall signal. A digital watermark should not be distorted or lost when the signal is passed through a conversion and compression process. Watermarks can be encrypted to increase the resistance of the DRM system to hackers. It is possible to identify watermark in the media file but a decryption code is needed to decipher the watermark messages. Digital watermarks can be added to any type of media files such as digital video and audio. Video watermarking is performed by adding slightly modifying the colors and/or light intensities in the video in such a way that viewer does not notice the watermarking information. Audio watermarking is performed by adding audio tones above the normal frequency or by modifying the frequencies and volume level of the audio in such a way that the listener doesn't

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