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Hong Kong Digital Entertainment Association

Established in 1999, the Hong Kong Digital Entertainment Association (HKDEA) is a non-profit making trade body and is dedicated to the betterment of the local digital entertainment industry. The association is based at The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) and was initially supported through a grant by the Innovation Technology Commission of the HKSAR. HKDEA's missions are:

  • To promote technology development within the digital entertainment industry in order to create internationally competitive products;

  • To explore and develop new markets;

  • To eliminate the negative images associated with playing video games;

  • To discourage software piracy;

  • To facilitate communication and interaction between industries associated with digital entertainment, including toys, entertainment and video games.
  • Formed in 1999, the HKDEA was created during a time when there are relatively few local video games developers. As an ever-expanding industry that is still in the infant age, we believe that there are lots of opportunities for new start-ups, as well as existing developers to expand. The HKDEA was thus established to provide a mechanism upon which local developers could cooperate to ensure industry-wide prosperity.

    International Trend

    International treaty supports and requires individual countries to legislate for digital rights management. The WIPO Copyright Treaty (Article 2H) contains an article titled 'Electronic Rights Management', which is as follows:

    'One of the foundations of future electronic commerce are means to control access to protected works and to combine digital copies of works with information about the author of and/or the owner of rights in such work. The Copyright Treaty obligates the ratifying Member States to provide adequate legal protection and effective legal remedies against the circumvention of such access control or the removing or altering of such rights information.'

    Relevance between Digital Rights Management and their 'purchase'

    When the owner a digital property 'sells' a digital product such as the music or songs contained in a CD, he is in fact selling a media containing the music or songs. He has not sold the rights underlying the products other than giving the buyer the right to listen and play for his private purpose.

    Regarding a visual product such as text, photos or graphical works. There are several different types of use rights in the case of a consumer or end-user purchase, including:

    · view only
    · view and print
    · view and copy
    · view, copy and print
    · time-limited use

    If it is a sound recording product such as music, songs or movie. They include:

    · play and listen only
    · play, listen and copy

    Use rights can be marketed individually or in different combinations. For example, a digital product can be marketed for viewing only. To protect digital rights, owners would look for technology so that it is incapable of being copied or printed unless permitted. Copying or printing would belong to other use rights requiring further compensation or payment to the right owner. This is called digital rights management. The most widely know example is DVD which is encrypted in such a way that the movie can only be played in certain region. That encryption technology has nevertheless been broken by computer program. Another example is the Secure Digital Music Initiative (SDMI) format which watermarks musical recordings to prevent duplication of the content. The encryption or watermark technology is often under challenge by technologists who consider circumvention being part of their research work or studies.

    Digital Rights Management

    Digital content is any type of digitised content of text, audio, visual, graphics and photos.

    The use of the Internet as a channel for disseminating information has given rise to the problem as to how property rights in an electronic content products are managed. These digital content products are generally described as eBook, digital book, digital music, digital photos. The challenge of the Internet on these digital content products emerges out of the easy duplication, transformation through software and dissemination of the content over the Internet which is fast, trans-border and without cost barrier, and can be anonymous and hence not easily detectable or traceable.

    Despite the challenge, digital content products remain to be a property protected by the copyright laws. The challenge remains to be a challenge. Digital rights owners have been investing on the effective management of there property rights through technology.

    A digital property is digital content that is:

    1. a proprietary right owned by someone who is usually the copyright owner or the authorised licensee, and

    2. accessed electronically. Such access can be in the manner of viewing or playing on a computer, CD player, DVD player or MiniDisc Player or MP3 Player, depending on the format of the digital content.