Digital flag furled for home networks

Apr 20, 2005

Fox Entertainment Group and IBM are working together on technology that will allow home networks to show copy-protected TV shows, while restricting the shows to their home market. Central to the issue is a broadcast "flag" that will be embedded in digital broadcasts beginning in July. Mandated by the Federal Communications Commission, the flag is designed to help prevent unauthorized redistribution of content over the Internet.

The problem is to allow distribution in a home network. Until the Fox-IBM collaboration, the only way to reduce unauthorized distribution of flagged content was to measure the time it takes the data to travel to another device in the network. But that meant that devices had to be close together, not always the case in home networks.

Under the new system, content protection is based on Defined Market Areas (DMAs), the area served by the broadcast channel. Viewers can thus receive digital programming and watch it on any device in a home network, as long as it’s within the same DMA.

"Protecting content in a way that also provides flexible use for consumers is an industry imperative," said Steve Canepa, vice president, IBM Media & Entertainment Industry. "Usability is a critical success factor for the widespread adoption of digital content distribution and protection techniques; IBM and Fox are developing an innovative business solution that benefits viewers and broadcasters alike."

The companies expect to complete the development in the first few months of 2006.

Explore further: Microsoft challenging US on overseas data

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Google Glass taking fans closer to the action

Jun 30, 2014

Your favorite team is playing for the title, and you are in the middle of the field. Google Glass is slowly becoming more common in sports as teams and broadcasters try to bring fans closer to the action. ...

Recommended for you

Microsoft challenging US on overseas data

2 hours ago

In a case closely watched by the tech sector, Microsoft will challenge Thursday a US court order requiring it to give prosecutors electronic mail content associated with an overseas server.

Facebook's Internet.org expands in Zambia

2 hours ago

(AP)—Facebook's Internet.org project is taking another step toward its goal of bringing the Internet to people who are not yet online with an app launching Thursday in Zambia.

Sony surprises with first quarter profit

2 hours ago

(AP)—Sony Corp. reported a surprise eightfold jump in quarterly profit Thursday as sales got a perk from a cheap yen and its bottom line was helped by gains from selling buildings and its stake in a video-game maker.

Samsung profit falls as smartphone sales slow

2 hours ago

(AP)—Samsung Electronics Co. reported a bigger-than-expected fall in second quarter profit on Thursday and said it was uncertain if earnings from its handset business would improve in the current quarter.

Microsoft unveils Xbox in China as it faces probe

13 hours ago

Microsoft on Wednesday unveiled its Xbox game console in China, the first to enter the market after an official ban 14 years ago, even as it faces a Chinese government probe over business practices.

User comments : 0