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Tracing Authors' rights by Labelling Image Services and Monitoring Access Networks


TALISMAN aims to provide European Union service providers with a standard copyright mechanism to protect their digital products against large scale commercial piracy and illegal copying. With the increasing availability of digitally stored information and the development of new multimedia broadcasting services, security questions are becoming ever more urgent. The acceptance of new services depends on whether suitable techniques for the protection of the information providers' interests are available. One problem that has not found a solution yet is the one of how to realise copyright protection for digitally stored data.
To this aim, the TALISMAN project is setting up an evolving and open framework based upon authors' societies, contents providers and broadcasters requirements allowing integration of a hierarchy of solutions for protecting video contents. Instances of such solutions encompassing low end systems based upon header description associated with the bit stream (called labelling) up to high end sophisticated, holographically inlayed, undeletable systems (called watermarking) will be developed within the TALISMAN project. Associated hardware implementation to support and exploit such realisations in a cost efficient way will be provided. Exploitation is performed through a dedicated equipment called monitoring.
robustness analysis to broadcast
real-time monitoring systems for labels and watermarks
Expected Impact
TALISMAN should provide the answers to the issues regarding the protection of authors and the management of their rights. It is one of its major objectives to specify a standard copyright mechanism in Europe for video protection to be submitted to DAVIC. The availability of copyright systems managed in a harmonized way will be essential for all the end users in the field: TV broadcasters,producers of movies, cassettes, video CDs and interactive CDs.

Main contributions to the programme objectives:
Main deliverables
A watermarking system for multi-media content.
Contribution to the programme
Developed Watermarking (holographically inlayed systems), Labelling and Monitoring algorithms to enable Copy Protection for Distribution Services.

Technical Approach
This is add-on public information over a work enabling a number of functionalities:
integrity: i.e. information strictly linking a work identification with the work contents itself; this should enable detection of any kind of modification performed over a work.
rights retribution: exploitation of such information will be used to provide accounting over the audiovisual works broadcast, detect infringements and be exploited for further retribution.
Labelling shall be carried within a work from its design up to its final exploitation in order to guarantee full consistency.
In order to ensure copyright protection, hidden secret information should be associated with one picture. This information is only accessible to authorized people in charge of this picture's copyright protection. Watermark will be used by an author either to detect automatically whether his work has been used out of his control or to provide evidence for his rights regarding a work.
A monitoring device is a piece of equipment enabling automatic analysis and exploitation over labels and watermarks. Two kinds of monitoring are envisaged:
automatic works surveillance during broadcasting and infringements detection regarding rights and integrity
automatic research of watermarks in any work broadcasted to detect property infringements.
Major steps
Sets-up an end-users driven task force (contents providers, authors' societies and broadcasters) defining a Common Functional Model (February 1996)
Specify an open marking and monitoring framework able to integrate hierarchical protection systems (August 1996)
Tools software development (February 1997)
Demonstrate robustness against additional noise (compression, numerical to video transform, ...) and pirate attacks (April 1997)
Hardware ready and demonstration in close-to-real broadcasting conditions (August 1998)
Summary of Trial
An important characteristic of the TALISMAN project is that it will prove the applicability of the techniques not only in laboratory conditions but also in close-to-real conditions of broadcasting. This should demonstrate that the solutions are fully resistant to different broadcasting conditions, which has never been experimented before. The major near term networks will be addressed: cable, satellite for video transmission, extended to ATM networks for interactive services access.
Monitoring devices enabling accounting, auditing and tracing over these networks also constitute an important output of the TALISMAN project.
The project focuses on video services and will demonstrate the relevance of the mechanisms around pilot demonstrations covering the major future broadcasting media: terrestrial CATV network for video transmission, satellite broadcasting, ATM network for multimedia interactive services access.
Key Issues
technologies robustness towards JPEG and MPEG-2 compression
strong concertation and involvement with standardisation bodies (ISO, DAVIC)
Actual achievements
Software systems for protecting a video sequence (label and watermark) and analysing their retrieval after compression.

Funding Scheme

CSC - Cost-sharing contracts


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Participants (10)

Centro Studi e Laboratori Telecomunicazioni SpA
Via G. Reiss Romoli, 274
10148 Torino
Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft zur Förderung der Angewandten Forschung eV (FhG)