New Tool for Copyright OwnersDecember 19, 2006

The Wall Street Journal has posted an article highlighting a new internet tool that tracks copyrighted works being used on the internet. Privately held Attributor Corp. of Redwood City, California offers a search service that scans billions of pages of the internet looking for infringing uses of copyrighted material. Attributor Corp describes its self as a technology company that has created a platform that provides transparency and accountability in online content use and licensing for the rapidly growing content economy. Attributor customers will include publishers of all kinds seeking a more effective way to identify, evaluate, and resolve re-use issues for content across the Internet. The more interesting concept highlighted in the Wall Street Journals article is the use of these types of services could potentially diminish the use of proprietary DRM (Digital Rights Management) schemes. Instead of having to handicap the end user of copyright material, services similar to Attributor’s product could allow copyright holders to specifically search for the actual infringers publishing the copyright material on-line. The most likely outcome is this service is just one more tool that a copyright holder can use to effectively manage and protect their works.

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