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 Monday, October 31, 2005

Study Group 9 has consented a Recommendation that establishes the concept of a digital rights management (DRM) bridge on a home network. DRM has been identified as a key issue to deal with in home networking, as well as an important driver for the technology (see story on home networking workshop). With standards in place, it is felt that many more key manufacturers may enter the market.

DRM is a term that refers to technical methods used to control or restrict the use of digital media content on electronic devices. So for instance a music file purchased from the Internet may be embedded with DRM to ensure that it is only used by the purchaser. Essentially it gives the service provider the assurance that its content is not used in a manner that is a violation of service agreements or legal requirements.

DRM in home networking is seen as a particularly important issue to resolve where a user can store and distribute content among various home-networked devices. A bridge will mean that from a userís perspective their digital purchases can be played on all networked devices without trouble. 

Experts said that key goals for the implementation of a DRM bridge are ensuring that it is sufficiently robust from the content providerís point of view, but also equally important is that it is non-intrusive from the subscriberís point of view.

The Recommendation is ITU-T J.197 (formerly J.drm), High level requirements for a digital rights management bridge to a Home Network.