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Method and System for Restricting Media Transmission to Virtual Universe (VU) Clients Located within Specific Geographical Locations

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000190098D
Original Publication Date: 2009-Nov-17
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2009-Nov-17
Document File: 3 page(s) / 40K

Publishing Venue



A method and system for enforcing the copyright restriction of media owners within a Virtual Universe (VU) is disclosed. The method and system for restricting the streaming of media to individuals located in certain physical or geographical regions. The restriction associated with streaming of media is defined by the media’s metadata.

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Method and System for Restricting Media Transmission to Virtual Universe (VU) Clients Located within Specific Geographical Locations

Disclosed is a method and system for restricting transmission of a protected media to users of a Virtual Universe (VN) located in physical regions as defined by the metadata of the media.

A VU is a computer-based simulated environment represented using 3-D graphics that resembles the real world in terms of physics, houses and landscapes. Typically, a VU is populated by many users that are known as "residents" who traverse, inhabit and interact in the VU using "avatars".

In order to represent oneself to other users in a VU, a user can select a graphical representation that is in the form of a cartoon-like human. The cartoon-like human corresponds to an avatar of the user in the VU. Typically, an agent in the user's account is employed for building the avatar. The agent is connected to an inventory of assets that the user owns in the VU. The VU environment is comprised of regions. A region represents a virtual area of land within the VU that typically resides on a single server. Avatars, assets and the environment associated with a VU are associated with Universally Unique Identifiers (UUIDs). The UUIDs may be tied to geometric data distributed to users as textual coordinates, textures are distributed to users as graphics files such as JPEG2000 files, and affects data rendered by the user's VU client according to the user's preferences and user's device capabilities.

Land owners within a VU often stream media such as, music, video, and pictures, within regions of their land. The streamed media may be original, copyrighted or in public domain. However, owners of copyrighted media are presently unable to systematically prevent unauthorized usage of their media within a VU. The media owner should be able to manage viewing of the media according to the restrictions of the copyright.

The method and system disclosed allows media owners to enforce restrictions on the transmission of protected media to users of a VU located in physical regions as defined by metadata of the protected media. The restrictions may be tied to an association of a client source region of media stream and a receiving region of the media stream. For example, a restriction may allow streaming of media from real-world Germany to a VU region, but may not allow streaming of media from real-world United States to the VU region. Further, a database or policy table may be utilized to specify the restrictions. For example, a separate system may be employed for storing the license and metadata information. The separate system may be used to retrieve the licensing and metadata information using a look-up operation. The look-up operation may be performed using checksum analysis, media analytics and using unique keys embedded wi...