An Advanced Watermarking Application for the Copyright Protection and Management of Digital Images of Cultural Heritage Case Study: “Ulysses”

An Advanced Watermarking Application for the Copyright Protection and Management of Digital Images of Cultural Heritage Case Study: “Ulysses”

Georgios Stilios (TEI of Ionian Islands, Greece) and Dimitrios K. Tsolis (University of Patras, Greece)
Copyright: © 2009 |Pages: 17
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60566-118-6.ch012
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The issue addressed in this chapter is the design, implementation, and evaluation of a watermarking application, especially focused on the protection of cultural heritage. The application described here is focusing on protecting digital surrogates of high-quality photographs of artifacts, monuments and sites, and on countering copyright infringement of online digital images. This is achieved by the integration of an innovative watermarking method to a specialized and usable user–interface. The system is specifically applied to “Ulysses,” the Official Cultural Portal of the Hellenic Ministry of Culture (HMC). The chapter is structured in 7 main sections where an overview of the issue is presented, the watermarking method is analyzed, and the user-interface is described in detail. Finally, an evaluation of the overall watermarking application is presented and specific on-site implementation issues are analyzed.
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The Origins of the Problem

The great value of cultural content is by now well recognized as it relates directly not only to culture in general but to important and vast markets, mainly Education, Tourism, Entertainment and Research. Wide access and delivery of valuable content raise several critical issues, pertaining to management, protection and exploitation of digitized cultural content. These include the critical problem of IPR (Intellectual Property Rights), protection and the unauthorized use and exploitation of digital data (“electronic theft”). Besides economical and other implications, such problems create considerable skepticism to cultural organizations and individual content owners. As a result content of great educational and economical value is often held secret and private.The issue is gradually becoming critical mostly due to the following reasons:

  • 1.

    Advances in technology have improved the ability to reproduce, distribute, manage and publish information (CSTB, 99). Reproduction costs are much lower for both right holders (content owners) and infringers, and digital copies are perfect replicas. The average computer owner today can easily do the kind and the extent of copying that would have required a significant investment a few years ago. The computer networks have changed the economics of distribution. Networks enable sending multimedia content worldwide, cheaply and at a high speed. As a consequence, it is easier and less expensive both for a rights holder to distribute a work and for an individual to make and distribute unauthorized copies. Finally, the World Wide Web has altered at a fundamental way the publication of information, allowing everyone to be a publisher with worldwide reach. The variety of documents and multimedia content of all sorts on the Web demonstrate that many people worldwide are making use of that capability. This is affecting the Cultural Sector too.

  • 2.

    The information structure has been integrated into everyday life, affecting directly the intellectual property legislation (House, 98). Today, actions that can be taken casually by the average citizen – downloading files, forwarding information found on the Web – can at times be violations of intellectual property laws. Others as such as making copies of information for private use may require difficult interpretation of the law simply to determine their legality. Consequently, individuals in their daily lives have the capability and the opportunity to access and copy vast amounts of digital information, yet lack a clear picture of what is acceptable or legal. On the other hand, the necessary amendments of the copyright legislation in several cases do not cope with the entirety of the problem, resulting in certain legislative weaknesses.

The issue of copyright infringement in the Cultural Heritage sector is mainly observed to the commercial exploitation of digital images. Some prevailing examples of copyright infringement especially for digital images of Cultural Heritage could be viewed in many corporate web sites, where the unauthorized commercial exploitation of digital images is conducted in an every day basis. This improper exploitation of digital images is proving the lack of awareness of both content holders and content users.

Complete Chapter List

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List of Reviewers
Table of Contents
Athanasios Skodras
Dimitrios Tsolis, Lambros Drossos, Spyros Sioutas, Theodore Papatheodorou
Chapter 1
Alfredo M. Ronchi
“Creativity is one of the highest forms of human energy. It is a defining human trait that enables us to design and use tools, while giving us the... Sample PDF
Intellectual Property Rights
Chapter 2
Ioannis Kostopoulos
This chapter highlights the need for using copyright protection tools in our digital transactions. The main tools of copyright protection, such as... Sample PDF
Digital Rights Management: A New Trend or a Necessity
Chapter 3
Image Watermarking  (pages 56-70)
Nikos Tsirakis
This chapter describes image watermarking, the most common and widespread category of media files are images. The evolution of the Internet and the... Sample PDF
Image Watermarking
Chapter 4
Alessandro Piva, Roberto Caldelli, Alessia De Rosa, Mauro Barni, Vito Cappellini
The need to safeguard the property rights of multimedia content from unauthorized copying and the possibility to determine the true owners of the... Sample PDF
Watermarking Techniques for DRM Applications
Chapter 5
V. E. Fotopoulos, I. D. Kostopoulos
This chapter introduces JPEG 2000 as an application field for image authentication and the new technology of digital image watermarking. The new... Sample PDF
Watermarking and Authentication in JPEG2000
Chapter 6
Evanthia Tsilichristou
The basic principle of watermarking is the addition of the watermark signal to the host data that we wish to watermark. The addition is taking place... Sample PDF
Securing and Protecting the Copyright of Digital Video Through Watermarking Technologies
Chapter 7
Nikos Nikolaidis
Intellectual property rights protection and management of multimedia data is essential for the deployment of e-commerce systems involving... Sample PDF
Digital Rights Management of Images and Videos Using Robust Replica Detection Techniques
Chapter 8
Shiguo Lian
In this chapter, the digital fingerprinting technology that is used to trace illegal distributors in multimedia content distribution is... Sample PDF
Digital Fingerprinting Based Multimedia Content Distribution
Chapter 9
Tom S. Chan
While delivering content via the Internet can be efficient and economical, content owners risk losing control of their intellectual property. Any... Sample PDF
A Digital Rights Management System for Educational Content Distribution
Chapter 10
Dimitrios P. Meidanis
This chapter investigates intellectual property rights clearance of as part of e-commerce. Rights clearance is viewed as another online transaction... Sample PDF
Digital Rights Management and E-Commerce Transactions: Online Rights Clearance
Chapter 11
Dimitra Pappa, Lefteris G. Gortzis
With emerging technologies constantly creating new possibilities for organisations to manage their information resources, this chapter proposes a... Sample PDF
Digital Rights Management in Organisations: A Critical Consideration with a Socio-Technical Approach
Chapter 12
Georgios Stilios, Dimitrios K. Tsolis
The issue addressed in this chapter is the design, implementation, and evaluation of a watermarking application, especially focused on the... Sample PDF
An Advanced Watermarking Application for the Copyright Protection and Management of Digital Images of Cultural Heritage Case Study: “Ulysses”
Chapter 13
Andrea de Polo
Digital Rights Management (DRM) describes a set of functionalities which control access to, and the use of, copyright material. In particular, they... Sample PDF
Digital Rights Management in the Cultural Heritage Arena: A Truth or a Myth
Chapter 14
Christos Golfinopoulos
The purpose of this chapter is to provide a brief overview of the legal framework that applies to Digital Rights Management (DRM) information and... Sample PDF
Digital Rights Management: A European Law Perspective
Chapter 15
Vagelis Papakonstantinou
DRM systems have been implemented in the past few years by the Content Industry as the panacea against all copyright (and Intellectual Property... Sample PDF
Legal Issues for DRM: The Future
About the Contributors