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Transaction Information Management in DRM process

ChangYeol LEE (Dongeui University)
JhongGeon KIM (MetaRights, Inc.)

1. Introduction

We have seen many efforts and activities for interoperability of data in E-Commerce through INDECS activity, and have currently come to expect the trusted and reliable e-commerce environment from the activity.

DRM is now approaching us with commercial applications and products in the stronger manner.

It assures that DRM is very good integrated tool to manage the life cycle of digital contents. But, there are aspects of no standard specifications yet, and of some parts of DRM system to be continuously reviewed.

In Korea, there are several DRM companies, but the interoperability between the DRMs have been issued. We are one of the organizers of the DRM Working Group with its main goal toward DRM framework establishment. It was started last month with its participants of Korea Telecom(KT), and Electronics Telecommunication Research Institute(ETRI), MetaRights, Inc, LG Research Center, etc. The working group will start to make the specification for Korean DRM standard.

In this context, we are also interesting in the W3C activity on DRM and its future possibilities. And, I believe that the followings could make the possible considerations for issues concerning DRM in the world.

2. Information Open strategy

DRM has two sides of information management. As an affirmative side, it provides the reliable and trusted framework in digital content distribution markets. The back-end of the DRM receives the transaction information from distributors. All contents are managed as the packaged format with usage information of clients.

If the DRM markets will be shared by some major providers, it is concerned about transaction information to be managed and controlled by the providers. It is the other side of DRM system. The information is very sensitive to clients, companies, government, and etc.

Followings are its examples:

- The client's private information is open status.
- New master and slave relationship between the back-end company and the front-end company may be established.
- Some countries do not want to move the transaction information to the other countries. Or similar situation may be occurred.

The above examples are the side-effect of the back-end system of DRM framework. We know that DRM is a natural solution in the trust digital content markets.

So, add-in actions in W3C activities are needed for the DRM framework like follows :

- DRM framework must be localized to the policy, custom, and environment of each country.
- The back-end can open transaction information to the instruments, which depends upon the local countries' situation.

3. Distribution Channels

Digital content market is very rapidly grow. DRM system will be operated on the internet, mobile, cable, and broadcasting system with the interoperability. The standard activities or working group of DRM must consider the diversity of media and channels. The business model with IMT-2000 and HDTV services will be configured with Internet. Therefore, seamless operations or smooth combinations among channels are important and then be developed by W3C or other instruments.

4. Conclusion

DRM provides a delicate content distribution framework to e-commerce markets. Concurrently, the open policy of the transaction information is needed depending on the local countries's policies. As a technical viewpoint, seamless and smooth combination among diverse content distribution channels must be supported.

DRM working group of Korea will follow the global standard tracks, but the way of opening the transaction information to local instruments should be considered positively.