Music, film and video piracy is a multi-billion dollar problem that undermines the growth of new models for offering entertainment to consumers and harms all participants in the global entertainment industry. Modern digital formats employed for sale or rental of commercial audio and video content to consumers-such as DVD, Blu-Ray Disc, and iTunes-incorporate content protection technologies that control access to and use of the content and limit its unauthorized copying and redistribution. Parties seeking to engage in unauthorized distribution and copying of protected commercial music or video content must circumvent the content protection to obtain a decrypted copy of the content. Once a decrypted copy of the content is obtained, the content protection technology is no longer effective at governing access to it and the decrypted content may be subject to unlimited use, copying, and redistribution.


Digital watermarking provides an added layer of security to the content protection chain to deter unauthorized use of content by embedding watermarks that identify the permitted uses of the content into the music or motion picture soundtrack prior to theatrical, packaged media (Blu-ray Discs, DVDs) and online digital distribution. Devices read the watermark during playback or copying of content. If the watermark indicates that the use is unauthorized, the playback or copying is stopped or the audio is muted, and an explanatory message may be displayed.

Effective content protection helps content owners…

  • Protect audio, film and video entertainment content throughout all release windows
  • Communicate copyright ownership and usage rights of their content
  • Protect content against common threats of piracy including camcorder recording, peer-to-peer file sharing, copying, format conversion, encoding and other forms of re-processing
  • Ensure content is protected through multiple packaged media and digital file formats
  • Secure content without impacting the consumer entertainment experience

Theatrical Content Protection Example Workflow

Example of Watermark Embeds in to Audio and Visual Media

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Member companies who offer, “Content Protection for Audio and Video Content,” solutions: