In Part 1 we looked at how most deployed DRM platforms provide a web-based environment where content can be uploaded, locked and FTP’d back to the native hosting resource. Today we’ll look at How DRM Works, and Where to Get It:
How DRM Works
To begin, a piece of content that is to be managed with DRM is packaged in a secure and certified environment where the original file is wrapped within a sealed lock that has one piece of information which can be read by any user. This license location URL is written into the header of the file and when a user opens the file their player is redirected to the verified license host.
This host is running a license service where they have encrypted in a database the keys required to grant the user access to the file. Additionally the keys are managed by the real core of any DRM platform which is the License Rules Management portion.
Content creators and webmasters are able to create various different License Usage Scenarios called Business Rules that best mimic their web-site business and allow access to their content in a similar manner.
The license keys themselves are small amounts of data which can be transmitted instantly to most users including dial up sessions and store themselves in a secure system location which the user cannot access or modify
In general the use of the content to the user is seamless with their normal controls and player features enabled. Users are required to login to PPV, Subscription and Token Models exactly as they do to email or managed members areas.
If the DRM has been deployed in silent or marketing modes, then the license process can happen instantly in the silent usage case, or after the entry of an email address or age response, in the marketing usage case.
Since statistics are of major importance to webmasters, DRM provides an incredible amount of data about your user’s consumption habits that won’t require you server log processing or data mining. DRM data is simple enough to be presented through your provider’s web interface.
Integration with modern DRM and processing requirements whether credit card, dialer, PayPal or check can be accomplished using modifications of existing posting processes. Webmasters can also integrate cascading billing processes into their DRM authentication such that there is a wider array of monetization options in the platform.
Where to Get It
The adult industry manages to put value and resources into the importance of relationships year after year which makes some decisions easy in this business. Ask around within your trusted ring of contacts. This industry is not so big that someone won’t stop to help you find out more. The boards are also a good place to look for feedback on what DRM can do for you.
If you are prone to use WMV files, they have quickly become the standard for digital media on the PC and Microsoft currently maintains a list of Certified DRM providers which is available on their website.
If your content is deployed using RealMedia, they require plug-ins on a valid RealServer to deploy, however more information about their Real MCS architecture is available here.
If DivX is more your flavor, they have an early stage DRM product available as part of their OVS product which works for the DivX Playa v1. No support for DivX DRM in the Windows Media player is provided.
StreamingMedia.com is also expanding their offerings with a new site which includes DRM industry information.
Editor’s Note: The increasing importance of DRM and the evolving technologies supporting it is something that content providers and pay site owners in particular need to be familiar with. Stay tuned to XBiz for more information on DRM technologies and implementation ~ Stephen
Christopher Levy is the CEO and President of NFA Group Inc., a Rights Management Consultancy providing expert vision in the areas of Entertainment Media and Corporate Security. Mr. Levy was the CTO and Founder of DRM Networks, the President and Founder of EmpireDRM [ClearKey Solutions] and is the inventor of streamOS, the world's first CDN overlay platform. Mr. Levy can be contacted at email@example.com