The Associated Press is to create a news registry that will tag and track all AP content online to ensure that it is not misappropriated. It is intended that the news registry will serve as the foundation of an industry initiative to protect news content from unauthorised use online, according to a press release.
The registry will use a microformat for news that was developed by the AP and recently endorsed by the London-based Media Standards Trust, a nonprofit research and development organisation. Essentially, the microformat will encapsulate AP and member content in an informational "wrapper" that includes a digital permissions framework that lets publishers specify how their content is to be used online and which also supplies the critical information needed to track and monitor its usage, the press release specified.
As well as notifying the AP of unauthorised use of its content, the registry will provide detailed metrics on content consumption, payment services and enforcement support, to allow publishers to manage digital use of their content more effectively. Initially, the registry will cover all AP text content online, and be extended to AP member content early next year. It will eventually be expanded to also cover photos and video.
The AP will fund development and operation of the registry until the end of 2010, when it is expected to become self-sustaining.
"What we are building here is a way for good journalism to survive and thrive," said Dean Singleton, chairman of the AP Board of Directors and vice chairman and CEO of MediaNews Group Inc. "The AP news registry will allow our industry to protect its content online, and will assure that we can continue to provide original, independent and authoritative journalism at a time when the world needs it more than ever."
Enthusiasm to protect copyright has been growing in recent months. Another new initiative is the Fair Syndication Consortium, which has been created by start-up Attributor and a group of publishers. It aims to track content and seek a cut of the ad revenue generated if copyrighted content is reused. Two weeks ago, European publishers presented the European Commission with a call for more copyright protection via the Hamburg Declaration. Will upping control of digital content be able to significantly enhance news outlets' revenue?
Source: Associated Press press release