If you are one of those who believe that image protect software and PDF protection software are unnecessary evils and that you would never have use for it, then read on.
As the person who introduced the very first image protect software way back in 1998, I can tell that it was done to fill a huge void and a necessity for anyone displaying intellectual property online. How it all came about in the first place was that I was creating a website to showcase the art of those around me. Being a signwriter and an artist myself I was surrounded by a lot of other extremely talented fine and scenic artists that catered for all types of art including sculpture and props making for the film and television industry.
So when I suggested creating a website to promote them and their art everyone was extremely keen, that is until it came to select which art that would be exhibited online. Well that became a problem because no-one wanted their art published online where anyone could download it, print it and copy it for use anyway that they please. That was the end of that project unless I could find a way to prevent copy because even I wasn't interested in displaying some of my own unique art which no-one outside of a few close friends had ever seen. So I looked for a means to copy protect images displayed on web pages and there wasn't anything. In fact at the time there was nothing at all and the only reference to "copy protection" that I could find was a paper written by a university student who merely speculated about the possibility of image protection but no ideas or suggestion as to how that might be practically possible.
I then started contacting software developers from all around the world and none of them had anything to offer except that "it was impossible" and "why would anyone even bother"? Not wanting to give up I stated researching the different programming languages looking for the means that I might be able to use to create image protect software. Java looked the most promising as it was portable and supported across all platforms to cater for both Windows and Mac computers. Java was also the most advanced and sophisticated software for games and image manipulation, so it looked like being the best avenue to explore.
But Java is extremely complex and this project was going to need advanced skills. I eventually found Tonny Espeset in Norway who at the time was developing the most sophisticated image effects, and between us we devised a method of encrypting images that could be displayed on web pages using an applet while being domain locked to the website so that even if someone downloaded the encrypted image, that it could be displayed anywhere except on the owner's website. That was the very first image protect software and while soon after others were distributing applets that could display images on a web page, the images were not encrypted and anyone viewing page source could obtain the link to download the image directly. Also, a simple page save collected everything anyway.
And such is the state of the copy protection industry even today where a multitude of solutions are offered as copy protection that may close some avenues of exploit, but in truth are are falsely advertised in the hope of appealing to the ignorami, and there are many out there. Twenty years ago less than 5% of graphic artists knew what the PrintScreen button does, and even today most web developers still believe that when visiting a web page that the image is not downloaded. Yes, they do exist, which can be confirmed by checking the usage stats for WordPress plugins advertised for Content Protection and Image Protection.... yet disabling the right-mouse button is all that they do.
Today ArtistScope provides copy protection software to protect all types of media and the protection that it does offer is more secure than ever imagined. The majority of clients using image protect and PDF protection software are in the teaching industry, providing online courses and live tuition online. Those courses are major investments in time and money to produce them, and to ensure that their content is not stolen and plagiarized by others, and also ensure that they get a chance to recoup their costs by way of paid subscription, copy protection pays a most important part in their business model.
With ArtistScope PDF protection software, authors can distribute for reading on the desktop or viewing online from a secure web browser. Online subscriptions are managed by the membership system in a CMS like WordPress or Moodle. However when publishing for desktop reading authors have the choice of employing DRM that locks the media to the user's computer, preventing them from sharing or distributing those lessons to others, thus protecting the livelihoods of the authors and teachers.
The same sophisticated options are also available with ArtistScope video protection software. But anything displayed on a web page, using the ArtistScope Site Protection Software (ASPS) has many more advantages because it can cater for all media and viewed using all desktop computers. ASPS is the ultimate solution for protecting images, PDF and video. In fact it will most securely copy protect everything on a web page including the very data that is sent from the website to the user's computer. Nothing can be extracted or exploited in any way, even from browser cache or memory.
To see why all others in the copy protection industry are confounded by ArtistScope copy protection software, see the online demo which will copy protect any web page on the Internet, even one from your website without even touching it.
Author: William Kent
Date: 15th September 2020
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