Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Geospoofing

This will be a new term to many of you, but expect it to become a hot issue in the near future. Services are coming onto the market that allow you to proxy your IP address so that you are either anonymous, or seem to be accessing the service from a different country.

This is a big issue for service providers - ITV and the BBC do not make their core content available in the US and Hulu does not make its content accessible outside the US. However, using one of these services, often based on the Tor open source system, you can easily get around these restrictions.

The implications are pretty profound. First of all, carving up the world has enabled content owners to maximise their returns, but resulted in a very complex structure within the content industry. There's a fair chance that this will force a change in the way both content sales are managed.

Secondly, rights management issues are going to need to be streamlined. With no end in view to the writers' strike in the US, this issue is also about to come to a head.

What I'm looking out for is if the industry will use this as a justification for an open global market, or if they'll run hiding to the next technical solution to this issue (there are a couple I've thought of).

I'm not holding my breath.

3 comments:

Privacy Ecosystem WebMaster said...

I could not agree more. If only we had more time to get pickaproxy.com and geospoofing.com off the ground faster :)

neveo said...

Yeah, and go out to dinner while you waiting for content to load. I am a subscriber to a tennis streaming site which blacks out tournaments in my home country. I tried geospoofing - impossibly slow - a two hour match would take 40 hours of freezing, jerky video and unsynced audo

Iolo Jones said...

Neveo - you're quite right, geospoofing is only as good as the service and therefore a dedicated server is the best solution, witgh good connectivity, and this is expensive. I know British expats who pay $30 a month for such a service.

What is ridiculous is that there is content and an audience willing to pay (something?) for it - i.e. you, and that no one is making a market...