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Position Paper for W3C DRM Workshop

Submitted by
Mark Rowe (Hewlett Packard)
Zachary Coffin (KPMG Consulting)

The authors of this position paper are involved in an effort within MPEG (ISO/IEC JTC 1 SC 29 WG 11) to create an ISO/IEC standard for a multimedia framework (MPEG-21). Digital rights management will be a key component of the MPEG-21 framework. Though the authors are each employed by their respective companies, this position paper is being submitted on behalf of their involvement in the MPEG-21 effort. Mark Rowe (mark_rowe@hp.com) is chair of an outreach program within MPEG-21 that seeks to proactively identify and engage other (non-MPEG) standardization work that is relevant to the MPEG-21 effort. Zachary Coffin (Zacharycoffin@email.com) is chair of an outreach effort to support and promote MPEG-21 at a digital media summit event tentatively scheduled for April 2001.

MPEG-21 has published a report (Proposed Draft Technical Report) that details the proposed requirements for the multimedia platform. This report is available to the public at http://www.cselt.it/mpeg/public/mpeg-21_pdtr.zip. With regard to digital rights management the proposed requirements described in this document include (note: this list has been slightly revised in a subsequent document that has not yet been made public):

  1. Access to and interaction with Digital Items while keeping the amount of hardware to a minimum.
  2. Easy interaction with Digital Items from different sources without swapping of physical modules.
  3. Conveying to end users which conditions apply to what types of interaction with the content.
  4. Protection of User privacy.
  5. Service models in which the end user's identity is not disclosed to the service/content provider and/or to other parties.
  6. The preservation of User rights.
  7. The content and the end user's rights to interact with it to survive common accidents.
  8. Terminal mobility (the ability to use the same device in different locations).
  9. Content mobility (the ability to manage rights when interacting with content from different terminals).
  10. Content and the end user's rights to interact with it to survive changing to a new version of similar hardware or software.
  11. Content and the end user's rights to interact with it to survive changing to a different type of MPEG-21 hardware.
  12. Transferring of User rights according to the conditions under which the rights have been acquired.
  13. Enabling content owners to control which of their assets are available when, where and under what conditions.
  14. Persistent security over time and renewability of that security.
  15. The flexible expression of different business models/rules, which might yet be unknown and which may change or vary.
  16. Enabling content owners to change business rules as appropriate.
  17. Implementations that are cost effective with regard to the value of the content to be managed and protected.
  18. Fast development of products and services.
  19. Implementations into devices that have a long life cycle, i.e. at least five years.
  20. Implementation of a solution based on currently available technology.

Note: In the above list, the term "Digital Items" applies to the digital representation of content within the MPEG-21 framework, and the term "User" applies to all parties in any transfer or exchange of Digital Items within the framework (including the content owner, the content provider, and the content consumer).

In the normal course of events MPEG-21 will issue a "Call for Proposal" (CfP) to invite outside parties to participate in its standardization process by submitting technology that addresses a specified set of requirements (such as those listed above). MPEG-21 has recently issued CfPs for two of its framework components. (These CfPs can be found at http://www.cselt.it/mpeg/cfp/digital_item_declaration.zip and http://www.cselt.it/mpeg/cfp/digital_item_identification_and_description.zip). MPEG-21 can be expected to issue additional CfPs for other framework components (including a component addressing digital rights management) in the coming months. However, MPEG-21 differs from other MPEG efforts in the extent to which it seeks to identify and engage with work in other standardization organizations. MPEG-21 has initiated an Outreach Program that seeks to identify relevant initiatives underway in other (non-MPEG) standards organizations and to proactively invite these organizations to respond to MPEG-21 CfPs or submit comments on the MPEG-21 technical report. In addition, the MPEG-21 Outreach Program seeks to identify opportunities for MPEG-21 to work with other organizations to further the development of the multimedia framework and then make specific recommendations on how MPEG-21 should address these opportunities. The W3C workshop on digital rights management provides an opportunity for the MPEG Outreach Program to identify related activity in W3C and explore the prospect of a cooperative effort between W3C and MPEG with regard to digital rights management.