Copyright protection using block chain - SkillBakery Studios


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Thursday, November 19, 2020

Copyright protection using block chain

When a person creates an original work, fixed in a tangible medium, he or she automatically owns the copyright to the work. Copyright protects original works such as literary, dramatic, musical, and artistic works. Copyright protection is automatically provided under the Copyright Act 1968 and gives the creator of the work exclusive rights to reproduce it, commercialize it, and be recognized as its creator. As with other forms of intellectual property, there is no authenticated method to see whether the material is copyrighted or not. Copyright material is protected from the time it is first written down, painted or drawn, filmed or taped. The storage of the copyrighted material needs to be done in a secure place and with the proof of-property concept hence claiming the ownership of the copyright. The traditional database might not be the solution that can update or delete the data reducing the factor of security for the stored material. Blockchain can be an appropriate solution to securely store copyrighted material. Copyright is one of those thorny issues that are always causing pain to creative types. After all, if you write something, make music, take a photograph, or in some other way create, in theory, you should receive full recognition (and payment). In the united states, this falls under title 17, which deals with “original works of authorship”, including literary, dramatic, musical, artistic, architectural, and some other intellectual works. Many websites host their content with work that is unauthorized. The content creator may suffer loss in case the work is used for revenue purposes. The person that does not hold the copyright for the work gets paid for it. The creators may claim the work when the work is seen on an unauthorized website. But the proof-of-property record is not maintained in the case, so the creator faces some difficulties in claiming the copyright content. Unfortunately, particularly with the vast free market that is social media, it’s increasingly common for people to feel they should get everything for nothing. The copyright holder is usually not get paid for their content and someone else takes their credit. It is more disappointing when someone earns money through the content created by another person. Copyright data can be stored in various storage systems but the blockchain is the ultimate solution to protect the copyright information. Blockchain is similar to a database but only supports create and read operations. Data is stored in form of blocks which are coupled to each other and hence form a long chain. The data in the blocks is in an encrypted form that makes it difficult to crack or change. Each block contains the address of its previous block and the following feature makes the blockchain immutable (i.e. no one can change the block in between of the chain). Blockchain works in a distributed environment that makes it immune to failures providing a restore point from other blockchains in the network.

Image Uploading Uploading of the images is facilitated by the use of a web portal where the user can either claim the copyright or check the image for any copyright issues if the images are to be used commercially. The image will be passed on to the blockchain manager which will broadcast the image to blockchains for further validation. B. Image Verification One of the methods of comparing the images is pixel by pixel comparison which takes a lot of time. In case of the blockchain, hundreds of images are to be compared with the uploaded image. Thus, this method will not be efficient in comparing the images. Below is discussed the algorithm of phase which calculates the hash value of image based on pixel features. Hence, comparing the hash values is easy and fast rather than comparing the whole image. In this step the image hash will be calculated and cross-verified with all the blockchain records and thus giving the result whether the image already exists in blockchain or not. Image hash is a 64-bit value that is obtained by resizing the image to 8 × 8 arrays and then doing some changes to the images such as gray scaling, averaging the pixels, etc. After that, the brightness value for each pixel is considered and appended to get a 64-bit hash value.

Algorithm- PHash:- To find the hash value of an image. Pre: Requires jpg/png/jpeg image Post: The hash value of the given image is obtained as a result

1. Reduce the size of the image.

2. Reduce the color of the image (i.e. convert the image to grayscale).

3. Calculate the average pixel colors of the image.

4. Calculate the brightness value of each pixel for every pixel in the image.

5. Appending the result of the previous step will result in a hash value of length that is equal to the size of the reduced image.

After the 64-bit hash values are obtained they are converted to 16-bit hex value for ease of handling. A hash value of the image to be compared is sent over the blockchain network where the obtained values are compared with pre-calculated hash values to find out the similarity between the images.

The similarity of the two images can be calculated by using the formula given below:

Similarity = (1 - (X - Y) / 64.0) * 100) Where X = hash value of 1st image Y = hash value of 2nd image If the similarity is above the threshold value, image is rejected and the user gets acknowledgment about the request or else if the image is accepted then it is added to all the block chains as a new record and image are digitally watermarked implying that the image is now copyrighted.

Users get a receipt containing the unique id to claim copyright on the system. C. Acknowledge Copyright Protection. The user gets a unique link from the system where he/she can claim the copyright image along with other information. The image is securely stored on the blockchain network and provides copyright protection.

The copyright protection of any image is done by considering a certain image. Before considering the copyright, the image should be selected by the user’s choice. The user must be logged into the system using a username and a password which provides accountability for the records. User can opt-to signup for the system to get a username and password. After signup, the account(email) of the user is verified by OTP(One-Time-Password). After the user enters a correct OTP, he/she is allowed to log into the system. After the login is successful, user is provided with many options like upload, profile-check, etc. Considering the main aspect of the system mentioned in Fig.2 if the user uploads an image then it is sent to the blockchain manager for further processing. Blockchain Manager is a virtual entity that stores/check the image with the blockchains and handles other user activities. After receiving the image from using its hash value is calculated by a perceptual hash function. The blockchain manager communicates with the blockchain via blockchain API. Before any data is requested all the blockchains are synced with each other to ensure that only recent data is taken into consideration. The blockchain is requested and copied into a local variable. The hash values in the blockchain are then compared with the presently calculated hash value (user uploaded image). The similarity of the two hashes are taken into consideration (blockchain’s records and presently calculated hash value) and if any of the similarity is above 75% the image is not accepted. Users get a message that the copyright is already held by someone along with the contact details of the owner. In other cases, if none of the hash values matches the given criterion then the image is accepted. The accountability holds proof for uploading here and the image is watermarked accordingly. The username of the owner along with the image’s hash value and other details like date, image size, etc. is uploaded to the blockchain. After uploading sync operation is applied to all the blockchains to ensure all the chains are up-to-date. The user gets a unique id (hash value) to claim the copyright on the system. Also, a link is displayed where the user can simply click and get the validity status of the uploaded image.

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