Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Spy Cameras, Secret Audio Help Fight Movie Piracy

If all the sounds of the summer blockbuster "Man of Steel" were stripped away ...a light humming would still be heard. The barely audible noise is an audio watermark...

Designed by engineers at San Diego company Verance Corp., the watermark is a unique signal to Blu-ray disc players that the movie being watched was illegally recorded at a movie theater. After 20 minutes of playtime, the disc player shuts the movie down and offers the viewer the chance to continue watching—by paying for the movie through legitimate sources like Inc. and Netflix Inc.

...a San Diego startup, PirateEye, believes they can combat piracy using a vastly different technology.

The PirateEve camera, in theaters, can spot people recording a movie.

It installs cameras above theater screens that can detect recording devices in the audience and then send pictures of offenders to theater security.

PirateEye's camera-spotting technology was adapted from a military application that placed sensors under combat helicopters to scan the ground below for reflections from scopes on sniper rifles. 

Hollywood studios provided several million dollars in investment for the company, which has also been funded by private investors. (more)