17 / February / 2021

How To: Content Distribution Regulations

Undoubtedly, OTT content is a part of our lives. Whether it’s smartphone, tablet or Smart TV, our craving for digital media is continuous and insatiable. According to Nielsen, the average adult consumes nearly 12 hours of digital media every day. And over half of households with Wi-Fi, streamed content on OTT devices for an average of 50 hours per month.

How To: Content Distribution Regulations

OTT content delivery is determined by complex changing regulations that require content delivery platforms to constantly manage and enforce viewing policy on a multitude of mobile and fixed devices around the world. For example, a live tennis game may be blocked for viewers located within the in-market viewing area. Or, that same game could be restricted for a period unless a viewer has a subscription with the content owner.

What should be tracked?

Content delivery platforms encounter rights requirements when broadcasting content, such as geo restrictions, certain types of network connections may have restricted access to content based on contractual obligations or their propensity to obfuscate geolocation, detecting credential abuse and unauthorized logins to view digital content.

To accomplish the task, a delivery platform is required that can:

  • Restrict digital media access based on country, state, city or postal code
  • Restrict digital media access based on the originating IP address, while checking against potential risks such as anonymous proxies or virtual private networks (VPNs) that may disguise the originating IP address
  • Restrict digital media access when the originating IP address is associated with a known offender (e.g., a BitTorrent service).

Content rights holder must identify users and comply with policies, all this - in a seamless manner that doesn’t disrupt the user experience or prevent legitimate users from accessing content how and where they want.

Data Matters

Poor data quality can undermine the policy enforcement of digital rights and put your content platform at risk of non-compliance. To be effective, IP address data needs to be fresh, accurate and complete. Data on IP addresses, geolocation, proxy/VPN associations, reputational data, etc. needs to be updated at least weekly. As well, content providers should review data analysis practices regularly to ensure that processes and data fields are aligned with recent market changes and new licensing requirements.