IDF and cIDF ANNOUNCE AIM OF COLLABORATION
Washington - Geneva, July 11, 2001.The International DOI Foundation (IDF: UK, Switzerland, US) and the
Content ID Forum (cIDf: Japan) announce their intention to undertake discussions with a view to seeking
harmonization of their work on identifiers for content in the digital environment.
"Content ID", a set of well-defined metadata including a unique code embedded in each digital content
item, guarantees content uniqueness and stabilizes content value. It creates an environment for open-type
equipment that encourages active usage such as the creation of derivative products.
The Content ID Forum was established by Professor Dr. Hiroshi Yasuda at the University of
Tokyo for the purpose of providing a strong mechanism for copyright management. The Forum is
strengthening digital content commerce over networks and has been promoting global standards
for about one year in cooperation with other standardization bodies throughout the world.
cIDf is a non-profit organization, founded in 1999, currently with 168 member organizations;
the majority of members are from Japan and some are from the US and Korea. The members range
over various interests of organizations such as technology companies, content producers,
and intermediaries . A couple of large scale verification experiments are planned to be conducted, financially
supported by the extra-departmental bodies of the Japanese government.
The Digital Object Identifier (DOI®) is a system for identifying and
exchanging intellectual property in the digital environment, being implemented and developed
by the International DOI Foundation (IDF). DOIs are persistent identifiers
assigned to content in the form of digital objects, accompanied by a set of interoperable
well-structured metadata and a managed distributed resolution system. IDF is a paid
membership organisation, founded in 1998, open to any interested party. Membership
fees support development of DOI infrastructure until migration to a self-funding operating
federation, being developed by IDF, is complete. The Foundation is currently supported
by approximately 50 member organisations from a broad geographic spread (USA, Europe,
and Asia) and range of interests such as technology companies, content producers, and
intermediaries. Large scale applications of DOI such as CrossRef
are now live and registration agencies are being established internationally.
DOI and cIDf have been independent development activities. Each is developing a
specifications and infrastructure for content identification and metadata which it hopes
will be widely adopted and enable e-commerce services and content/rights transactions.
The two activities recognize many areas of common approach and shared understanding, including:
- the importance of unique identification in enabling commerce, including that of copyrighted items;
- the importance of naming content rather than locations such as URL;
- the convergence of all media types (images, video, audio, text, etc.) in a managed digital
network, requiring interoperable standards for identification description and rights;
- the essential role of structured principles such as "Indecs Project"
(http://www.indecs.org), in providing the basis for such interoperable metadata and
hence building services;
- the need to articulate rights information in an automated and easy to use manner;
- the need for associated resolution systems (e.g. The Handle System developed by CNRI)
to associate identifiers with current metadata, which may articulate services;
- the need for consistent policy development including the development of commercially
feasible self-financing operation of identifier systems
There are currently differences between the systems that reflect their different approaches.
Amongst areas of difference are:
- cIDf has a special interest in embedding identifiers within digital objects, whereas
DOI assigns identifiers which are bound to digital objects as pointers via the resolution system.
- DOIs are opaque strings, which may or may not incorporate other identifiers,
whereas CIDs are structured strings embodying a specific naming convention.
- CID's initial application focus was on video and images. DOIs initial area of
application was text. Each has applicability to other media.
There are currently many standards-based and consortia-based activities relevant to the development
of an infrastructure for digital commerce of content. Neither IDF nor cIDf envisage adoption of only
one single standard for all content in all circumstances. However the close similarity of approach of
these two major initiatives, each of which takes a practical view supported by a range of organizations
and take an implementable identifier mechanism as the starting point, suggests that convergence rather
than divergence of the two systems would benefit the wider community of users.
Recognizing the need to build on commonalities and reconcile differences with a view to interoperability,
IDF and cIDf have agreed to undertake discussions to:
- Analyze each systems aims and match to fundamental requirements for identification systems.
- Analyze possible interoperability and collaboration possibilities at the level of shared logical
components: numbering, description, resolution, and policy including business implementation.
- Enter into non-disclosure agreements to facilitate the exchange of information.
- Develop application profiles for use of one identifier with the other system, to demonstrate and
experiment with interoperation.
- Jointly investigate issues such as business models for infrastructure usage and cost recovery
- Study existing approaches for interoperable metadata principles.
- Exchange information on system development.
- Build on existing open collaborations such as participation in MPEG-21 "core experiments".
For more information contact:
Dr. Norman Paskin, Director, The International DOI Foundation
PO Box 233
Content ID Forum Secretariat
6F TDC Building
2-9-18 Misaki-cho, Chiyoda-Ku
Tokyo, 101-0061 Japan
TEL: +81 3-3261-0372
FAX: +81 3-3511-6680
Chairman of IDF:
President of cIDf:
Mr. Joel Baron (International Association of Scientific, Technical and Medical Publishers)
Dr. Hiroshi Yasuda (University of Tokyo)