Digital flag furled for home networks

April 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: UK unveils new technology to fight extremist content online

Related Stories

UK unveils new technology to fight extremist content online

February 13, 2018

The British government is unveiling new technology designed to remove extremist material from social media, amid mounting pressure on companies like Facebook and Twitter to do more to remove such content from their platforms.

Americans are saving energy by staying at home

January 31, 2018

Information and communication technologies are radically transforming modern lifestyles. They are redefining our concept of "space" by turning homes and coffee shops into workspaces. (This article was written in a coffee ...

Google's AI push comes with plenty of people problems

February 2, 2018

Google CEO Sundar Pichai recently declared that artificial intelligence fueled by powerful computers was more important to humanity than fire or electricity. And yet the search giant increasingly faces a variety of messy ...

Reaching rural America with broadband internet service

January 17, 2018

All across the U.S., rural communities' residents are being left out of modern society and the 21st century economy. I've traveled to Kansas, Maine, Texas and other states studying internet access and use – and I hear all ...

Why boredom can be good for you

January 23, 2018

Being trapped in a tedious job, with no possibility of escape, is a recipe for real boredom. This kind of boredom is unpleasant and definitely bad for us. But a flurry of recent media interest on the subject of boredom suggests ...

Recommended for you

Unprecedented study of Picasso's bronzes uncovers new details

February 17, 2018

Musee national Picasso-Paris and the Northwestern University/Art Institute of Chicago Center for Scientific Studies in the Arts (NU-ACCESS) have completed the first major material survey and study of the Musee national Picasso-Paris' ...

Researchers create first superatomic 2-D semiconductor

February 16, 2018

Atoms are the basic building blocks of all matter—at least, that is the conventional picture. In a new study, researchers have fabricated the first superatomic 2-D semiconductor, a material whose basic units aren't atoms ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.