How to better resolve copyright disputes of digital collections from a technical point of view?

Digital collections are one of the most popular application scenarios of blockchain technology, and the barbaric growth of the industry also contains many hidden dangers . Taking the copyright protection of digital collections as the starting point, this paper discusses the compliant issuance solution of digital collections based on the main-subchain architecture , in order to provide some ideas for the healthy development of the digital collections industry.

The development of digital Tibet industry is accompanied by obstruction

With the successful operation of overseas projects such as ” NBA TopShot ” and ” Boring Ape “, digital collections have gradually attracted social attention and have quickly become popular on the Internet. In 2021, digital collections will develop rapidly in China. As of May this year, there have been more than 330 domestic digital collection platforms, and a large number of museums and performing arts groups, as copyright owners, are also publishing their own digital collections on major platforms. The report predicts that my country’s digital collection trading market will reach 50 billion to 80 billion yuan in 2-3 years.

Behind the rapid development of digital collections, the copyright protection of original works is an issue that cannot be ignored, and it is very easy to breed infringement if not paid attention to . On April 20, 2022, the Hangzhou Internet Court publicly heard the case of a technology company’s infringement of the right to disseminate works information on the Internet and pronounced the verdict in court .

The clarification and improvement of laws and regulations can indeed restrain the infringement of digital collections, but more of them are post-event constraints . The regulatory sandbox for the financial technology field is an ex-ante restraint mechanism , which can play a role in the infringement to a certain extent. preventive effect. Neither, however, can be restrained in action at the time of the infringement . In order to avoid the above-mentioned illegal cases from happening again, a penetrating dynamic constraint scheme has become the meaning of the title.

Compliant distribution of digital collections

How to better resolve copyright disputes of digital collections from a technical point of view?

We envisage the construction of a national-level digital collection main chain, which is positioned to constrain the potential infringing distribution of digital collection platforms across the country (hereinafter collectively referred to as “digital collection sub-chains”). Based on this positioning, on the one hand, the main chain of digital collections can synchronize the data of the sub-chains of digital collections for ” data auditing  ; Author-authorized distribution of digital collections acts as a ” dynamic constraint “.

in particular:

“Data Audit”

How to better resolve copyright disputes of digital collections from a technical point of view?

First of all, it is envisaged that the main chain of digital collections will be given the ability to build light nodes on the chain. The light nodes on the chain are similar to the clients of blockchain nodes. By connecting sub-chain nodes to synchronize their block header data, the purpose of obtaining audit data is achieved.

The audit idea of ​​this scheme starts from the bottom layer of the blockchain, which can take into account the security and performance of audit data acquisition , but there are also two shortcomings:

  • The block body data of the sub-chain node cannot be obtained, and the audit data is incomplete;
  • The on-chain light nodes of the main chain can only connect to homogeneous chain nodes, and the compatibility with heterogeneous sub-chain nodes is weak;

Considering that the national digital collection platform presents a heterogeneous multi-chain pattern, this solution cannot meet the full amount of audit scenarios.

How to better resolve copyright disputes of digital collections from a technical point of view?

In view of the shortcomings of the above solutions, we envisage that the blockchain service platform will uniformly deploy the supervision nodes of the heterogeneous chains , join the digital collection sub-chain, and synchronize the data for auditing.

Heterogeneous multi-chain is the basic pattern of the industrial blockchain. The efficient docking of heterogeneous chains is the basic capability of the blockchain service platform, and since all nodes are deployed, digital collections can be synchronized in full (block header + block body). The node data of the sub-chain and the audit data are complete.

So, after obtaining the data on the chain, how to carry out the audit analysis? The blockchain generally stores the generated state data in the form of key-value pairs, which hinders the structured analysis required for data auditing. The blockchain service platform can integrate a professional on- chain data structured analysis, statistics and analysis platform , which greatly reduces the audit threshold for on-chain data.

“Dynamic Constraints”

However, in the above scheme, when the infringement occurs, the supervisor of the main chain of digital collections can only audit the data on the chain that contains illegal content, but cannot intervene, which is essentially an after-the-fact constraint .

How to achieve real penetrating dynamic constraints? Imagine a scenario, in order to help the platform of digital collections to better fulfill their duty of care in pre-examination, it is stipulated that the issuer must pass the review before issuing digital collections on the sub-chain, and the platform side confirms the ownership of digital collections from the main chain of digital collections After the relationship or authorization relationship is legal, then agree to issue, so that dynamic constraints can be achieved. We take the legality confirmation of the authorization relationship as an example to illustrate how the digital collection issuer can prove to the platform that the digital collection to be distributed is authorized by the author of the original work.

How to better resolve copyright disputes of digital collections from a technical point of view?

As you can see from the figure above, the authorization and verification of original works is mainly done through verifiable claims . Verifiable claim is a concept in distributed digital identity (unique identification on the blockchain, in this example we assume that users have completed the registration of distributed digital identity on the main chain and sub-chain), it is a digital A certificate is a descriptive statement issued by a digital identity to endorse certain attributes of another digital identity, and attach its own digital signature to prove the authenticity of these attributes. In this example, the verifiable statement is issued by the author of the original work to the publisher of the digital collection, as follows:

"claiminfo": {    "id": "xxxxx", //该声明的id,每个声明都将仅有一个id    "issuer": "did:hyperchain:87c30de765f084ce3089168ee293053cd33b235d71",//该声明的签发数字身份      "issuanceDate": "xxxx", //该声明的签发日期      "expirationDate": "xxxx", //该声明的有效期  },  
    "subject": {     //这里是声明所证明的信息,包括声明持方的数字身份、属性描述        "holder": "did:fabric:97c30de767f084ce3080168ee293053ba33b235d71",        "name: "xxxxxxx", //作品名称    "hash": "xxxxxxx", //作品哈希    "Digital Fingerprinting": "xxxxxxx",//作品数字指纹    ......    },      "signature": {            "sign_type": "Secp256k1",            "signature": "eyJhbGciOiJSUzI1NiIsImI2NCI6ZmFsc2UsImNyaXQiOlsiYjY0Il19"  }

It can be seen that the issuer in claiminfo is the author of the original work, the value of the issuer is the digital identity account address registered on the main chain, the holder in the subject is the issuer of the digital collection, and the value of the holder is the number registered in the sub-chain The identity account address, including the attribute (attribute1) field in the subject, in this case, the attribute can be the unique identifier of the original work, such as the title of the work, the hash of the work, the digital fingerprint of the work, etc. Signature is the digital signature result of claiminfo & subject performed by the author of the original work using his own private key.

When the digital collection platform receives the verifiable statement submitted by the digital collection issuer, it can query the issuer’s public key from the digital collection main chain, and use the public key to complete the verification of the verifiable statement. Prove that this verifiable statement is indeed signed by the author of the original work, so as to complete the confirmation of the authorization relationship of the work and release the digital collection.

However, it is not difficult to find that in this process, the confirmation of the authorization relationship still has loopholes in manual review . If the digital collection platform and the issuer are in harmony, the occurrence of infringement cannot be avoided (the case pronounced by the Hangzhou Internet Court is due to the digital collection. The platform party fails to fulfill the higher duty of care for prior review).

In order to completely solve this problem, we introduce cross-chain capabilities into the solution to give the main and sub-chain interoperability. When the digital collection issuer submits a verifiable statement, the verification process of the verifiable statement is automatically triggered to realize the automatic confirmation of the authorization relationship. . The specific process is as follows:

How to better resolve copyright disputes of digital collections from a technical point of view?

As shown in the figure above, the verification logic of the verifiable statement (public key query, digital signature verification, etc.) is implemented by the smart contract of the main chain of the digital collection, and the interaction between the sub-chain of the digital collection and the main chain of the digital collection is performed by a relay chain. Unified relay. When the digital collection issuer submits the verifiable statement, the cross-chain triggering of the main chain smart contract is realized through the relay chain relay, and the verification of the verifiable statement is completed. The cross-chain interoperable transactions are unified and stored on the relay chain, which is convenient for joint and transparent auditing of cross-chain and multi-party.

The above process is completed automatically . The relay chain, cross-chain gateway and cross-chain contract are uniformly deployed and controlled by the regulator. The digital collection platform does not need and cannot intervene, and the digital collection issuer can obtain real-time feedback on whether to authorize the issuance of digital collections. The dynamic regulatory constraints of the authorized issuance of digital collections are truly realized.

Blockchain service platform empowers “compliant issuance”

The idea is very good, but from the idea back to reality, the dynamic constraints of the issuance of digital collections based on blockchain will encounter layers of obstacles in the actual implementation process .

As the author of the original work:

  • Where do I apply for confirmation and how do I issue a verifiable statement?
  • As a digital collection issuer, where do I go to submit a verifiable claim?

As the controller of the main chain, you need to face the biggest challenges:

  • How to build and expand the main chain of national digital collections with data auditing capabilities and copyright confirmation capabilities?
  • How to quickly connect with the sub-chains of more than 300 digital collections across the country?
  • The interoperability between the main chain and the sub-chain, in a complex network environment, how can it really be implemented based on the relay chain + gateway model?
  • How to integrate distributed unified digital identity?

If any solution only stays in the imagination, it is like a castle in the air and cannot generate practical value.

For the data auditing issue mentioned above, we mentioned that heterogeneous chain nodes can be deployed through the blockchain service platform to achieve efficient structured auditing of data on the chain. For the dynamic constraint landing problem mentioned above, it can also be solved in a package based on the blockchain service platform.

Digital collection control front desk

In order to meet the demands of original authors and publishers of digital collections , we also need to build a digital collection control front desk.

How to better resolve copyright disputes of digital collections from a technical point of view?

The front desk for digital collection management and control has access to the main chain and sub-chains. Authors of original works can register digital identities at the front desk, apply for the confirmation of original works, and issue verifiable statements. Digital collection issuers can register digital identities at the front desk and submit verifiable statements. Claims and releases digital collections after authorization verification.

Digital collection management and control background

Combined with the demands of the controller , we found that we also need to build a digital collection management and control background.

How to better resolve copyright disputes of digital collections from a technical point of view?

At the blockchain level, the digital collection management and control background has the ability to manage and control the underlying blockchain (main chain, sub-chain, relay chain, etc. ) Regulators are paving the way and clearing the way for the nationwide implementation of blockchain-based digital collection supervision solutions.

The digital collection management and control background mentioned above is the blockchain service platform. With the steady and in-depth advancement of the industrial blockchain, the city-level blockchain infrastructure led by the government is becoming a key part of the new infrastructure . If the local government takes the lead in building the main supervision chain, and takes the industry chain of each commission and bureau as the business sub-chain, we find that the blockchain-based dynamic constraint scheme for digital collections introduced in the text is also applicable to the city-level blockchain infrastructure. Construction and implementation also require the deep empowerment of the blockchain service platform as a unified management and control platform.


Some people believe that compliance constraints are a double-edged sword . Too weak force may lead to the barbaric growth of the industry, while too strong force may stifle emerging industries in the cradle and stifle innovation. The subtext of the double-edged sword metaphor is to treat compliance constraints as the opposite of industrial development.

As a new type of infrastructure for the future value Internet, the development of the industrial blockchain is self-evident to the country’s strategic significance. To develop, it must be sustainable and healthy. Compliance constraints themselves are not objects to be criticized or obstacles to industrial development, but the problems to be constrained. If there are no constraints, the development process of the industrial blockchain will be swallowed up by the problems caused by it. The author believes that the compliance constraints of the industrial blockchain should be integrated into the top-level design at the early stage of the industry, and it is also a key factor for the sustainable and healthy development of the industry.

The compliant issuance solution for digital collections based on the main and sub-chain architecture is the best example of deeply integrating compliance into the industry, which can achieve a dynamic balance between industrial development and compliance, and guide the industry to develop continuously.

Posted by:CoinYuppie,Reprinted with attribution to:
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