Currently, a number of DRM features are in place which attempt to stop e-book piracy on the web. However, most of these measures are inadequate and e-book piracy is a common practice. A new DRM feature, called SiDiM, now aims to ramp up anti-piracy efforts by trying to uniquely identify every e-book.
SiDiM is the short form of ‘secure documents by individual marking.’ The idea behind SiDiM is that each e-book can be made unique by slightly changing the text in it. It is not clear exactly how the text of each of these textbooks will be modified.
However, SiDiM essentially aims to render each e-book unique so that their uniqueness will serve as a ‘digital watermark.’ This way, whenever a user tries to rip off the DRM measures and try to share the copy illegally, the company will be able to identify the exact copy, and the exact owner of that copy.
It is being hoped that such a measure would significantly discourage users from indulging in e-book piracy. In this way, SiDiM is more of a better accountability measure, rather than being a more effective DRM feature. The regular DRM features that different companies such as Amazon currently implement on e-books are very easy to remove and users can got rid of them simply by downloading a simply app and converting them to a simpler format.
It remains to be seen how the mainstream e-book publishers eye the new SiDiM feature. For now, none of the notable publishers is on board with the SiDiM consortium but there’s a possibility that many of them may jump the bandwagon at the promise of improved profits.