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Standards committee wants to add DRM to JPEG images

By Shawn Knight ยท 12 replies
Oct 15, 2015
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  1. The Internet as we know it today – or at least, many of the pictures that make up the web – may look vastly different if the Joint Photographic Experts Group (JPEG) moves forward with an initiative it recently put on the table.

    The committee is essentially considering bringing digital rights management (DRM) to the standard JPEG format. The idea is to improve privacy and security by encrypting metadata about a photo such as where and when it was taken. Doing so, however, could severely limit your ability to copy and even open some photos.

    The JPEG 2000 standard already exists with DRM options in place although it’s primarily used by professionals in the medical field, the movie industry and so on.

    The committee recently held a meeting in Brussels which was attended by a member of the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF). The EFF rep attempted to convince the committee that DRM for JPEG would be a bad idea, citing comments from cryptographers that DRM doesn’t work, pointing out how it could infringe on users’ legal rights over a copyrighted work and how it would make standardization more difficult.

    The EFF is quick to point out that some sites including Facebook and Twitter already strip out all metadata from image uploads. This of course helps with privacy but it also eliminates useful information as it relates to authorship and licensing.

    That’s not to say that there is no place for privacy and cryptography in the JPEG format. The EFF said it would like to see the committee continue to work on the Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) for JPEG images that would allow for some improvements in privacy and security.

    Image courtesy spaxiax, Shutterstock

    Permalink to story.

  2. VitalyT

    VitalyT Russ-Puss Posts: 4,397   +2,934

    That's a sure path for convincing people to move away from JPEG.

    DRM is like plague, destroys everything it touches.
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2015
  3. Nitrotoxin

    Nitrotoxin TS Addict Posts: 142   +96

    PNG for the win!
    cliffordcooley likes this.
  4. Evernessince

    Evernessince TS Evangelist Posts: 3,900   +3,343

    They're just wasting their time doing this. It'll be less than a day before a website pops up offering to remove DRM and a bit longer before all websites remove the DRM in their image upload script.
    wishgranter likes this.
  5. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 12,790   +1,506

    The Exchangeable image file format (officially Exif), standard already supplies a raft of specific data on (jpg, tif,wav) formatted files.

    The WiKi shows some examples.

    To add DRM values would be simple, but all the viewers would need updates to enforce it.
    IMO, that would limit the adoption and implementation.
  6. yRaz

    yRaz Nigerian Prince Posts: 2,858   +2,164

    DRM has literally NEVER WORKED!!! What are they thinking or trying to do?
    wastedkill likes this.
  7. m4a4

    m4a4 TS Evangelist Posts: 1,426   +983

    Heh, these people don't understand the internet
  8. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 11,263   +4,931

    I like png, but there are instances where I prefer the smaller file size of jpeg. Such as forum post with size limit to uploads.
  9. Hexic

    Hexic TS Evangelist Posts: 490   +315

    Another example of how people never learn from the past. DRM has never worked to the point of being worth implementing in the first place.

    Hypothetically - they're gonna put DRM on JPGs. And not 6 hours later, everyone and their grandmother will have a bootlegged cryptographic JPG decrypter. Thus wasting all of the money these tards put into place to encrypt the files in the first place.

    It's almost like this has been happening over and over since the 90's...
  10. robb213

    robb213 TS Evangelist Posts: 345   +113

    It's because these people (higher level executives, etc) never look to the past for answers and go with things on a whim. Bad management as usual is all...unfortunately.
  11. Emexrulsier

    Emexrulsier TS Evangelist Posts: 600   +80

    Surely this is pointless. You could very simply use something like snipping tool (and there are many many more better options) for example to capture a an image of an image and bang the drm is gone. There would be no need to mess around with decryption or metadata removal, you would be creating a brand new image, where you can add you own data then sue everyone for using it :D
  12. NahNood

    NahNood TS Addict Posts: 116   +57

    Did we burn all Gifs yet??
  13. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 11,263   +4,931

    Not all GIFs, I still see a few floating around.

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