This post was first published on December 24, 2014.
Laws alone cannot eliminate copyright infringements. For the Copyright Law to take its course, there have to be effective detection of infringements and identification of infringers. Furthermore, as with any property rights, owners of copyrighted content have to take certain measures to protect their copyrights before expecting law enforcement to aid them. DRMs and ETMs are such measures a copyright owner is expected to take in order to protect his copyrights in the digital world. The term Digital Rights Management (DRM) broadly refers to a set of policies, techniques and tools that guide proper use of digital content. Simply put, a DRM system manages the appropriate use of content.
The major functionalities of this system are numerous. They include facilitating packaging of raw content into an appropriate form for easy distribution and tracking, protecting content for tamper-proof transmission, protecting content from unauthorized use and enabling specifications of suitable rights, which define the modes of content consumption. DRM systems also facilitate the delivery of content offline on CDs and DVDs; deliver content on-demand over peer-to-peer networks, enterprise networks, or the Internet; and provide ways of determining the authenticity of content and of rendering devices. Some of the popular controlled access techniques in use are encryption, electronic signature, digital watermarking etc.