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    Achieving More Secure Media Content Management with Blockchain

    February 18, 2020


    The media and entertainment industry in the United States contributes more than $632 billion to the economy. It also has the third most security token/initial coin offerings (STOs/ICOs). Perhaps it’s not hard to comprehend, then, why the industry is investing in a popular trend: blockchain.

    Look at these statistics:

    Blockchain Benefits and Challenges

    Blockchain, a secure, encrypted, digital distributed ledger that is chronologically time-stamped with unalterable data, offers a secure method to open source information between media and entertainment enterprises. These companies can eliminate the use of a third party to license and distribute content and better protect the intellectual property of various industry players. Plus, blockchain was created to be resilient during an outage or cyberattack, and transactions through it can’t be altered or destroyed, thereby increasing accuracy. It can even help in the tracking of media.

    There are a couple of sizeable challenges to utilizing blockchain in media and entertainment, including a lack of regulation and industry standards. Once these issues are addressed, blockchain technology will most likely be employed by an increasing number of industry participants.

    Content Management and Copyright Protection

    The emergence of online content can make it difficult to adequately manage and protect digital rights. Blockchain technology has the potential to subjugate this and other challenges:

    • Paid content can receive a boost from new, micropayment-based pricing models.
    • Monetization options emerge for an increasingly fragmented content inventory.
    • The allocation of advertising budgets becomes more accurate and targeted as media usage can be directly linked to the respective content items.

    Implementing blockchain offers many advantages in the management of media content, including new pricing options for paid content, transparent and secure customer-to-customer (C2C) sales and unlimited consumption of content. Content developers and contributors and artists can use it to prove ownership of their work, resulting in increased transparency across the media and entertainment industry. Instead of developers having to manually manage the rights to their content, smart contracts can be utilized to automate transaction tasks. By applying cryptography, blockchain also can enhance transparency in content distribution and more easily track the distribution of royalties.

    Establishing and protecting copyright can be very expensive, even for established media and entertainment studios attempting to eliminate infringement. Because blockchain creates a permanent record, any content on it is at a decreased risk for piracy. One study estimated that global online piracy costs the U.S. approximately $29.2 billion in lost revenue annually.

    With many digital copyright management systems, digital contents are freely available somewhere over the internet without any restriction to download, and users are unable to authenticate the content available on the internet because the content sources are usually unknown. The more secure transactions available through blockchain technology provide those in the media and entertainment industry with a tool to more easily register copyrighted content and track violations of it.

    Additional Advantages https://go.smpte.org/subscribe

    Along with providing media and entertainment enterprises with a resource to better protect their intellectual property rights, blockchain technology can eliminate fraud and reduce costs. It has the ability to support micropayments that can be processed without the need for an intermediary payment network or its fees and create new opportunities for large corporations to get closer to their customers and consumers.

    Established in 1916, the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers (SMPTE®) is comprised of more than 7,000 members: motion-imaging executives, creatives, technologists, researchers, and students who volunteer their time and expertise to the Society’s standards development and educational initiatives. Subscribe to our emails for more information on topics affecting the media and entertainment industry.


    Erminia Fiorino

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