CenturyLink Wins Social TV Sharing Patent

If AT&T, Comcast or other pay TV distributors allow subscribers to share video clips from TV shows and movies with friends on social networks, they may be forced to pay license fees to CenturyLink.

The IPTV provider won a U.S. patent on Tuesday for an invention titled, “System and Method for Sharing User Content Through a Set-Top Box.” CenturyLink details how it could use digital rights management parameters to limit how much content subscribers could share with friends.

Abstract: The disclosed embodiments include a system, computer readable medium, and method for recording and distributing video content based on DRM parameters. For example, in one embodiment, a set-top box is disclosed that includes a processor for executing a set of instructions. The set-top box also includes memory in communication with the processor. The processor is configured to execute the set of instructions to receive user input to record a video content; determine DRM parameters associated with the video content, wherein the DRM parameters are established by at least of a content owner and a communications service provider, the DRM parameters indicating designated portions of the video content that is recordable; and record the video content based on the DRM parameters.

Patent

Claims:

  1. A method for managing video content through a set-top box, the method comprising: receiving user input to record the video content to a set-top box; determining digital rights management (DRM) parameters associated with the set-top box, wherein the DRM parameters are established by a content owner or a communications service provider and indicate at least whether the video content is recordable for distribution by a user and a maximum length of selected video content that is distributable, wherein the selected video content comprises of particular pre-specified portions of the video content designated by the content owner or the communications service provider that are recordable for distribution; and recording the video content directly to the set-top box in response to the DRM parameters.
  1. The method of claim 1, further comprising editing the video content based on the DRM parameters to generate the selected video content in response to receiving a selection to edit the video content for distribution.
  1. The method of claim 1, wherein the user input is a response to an invitation for a video response communicated to the set-top box.
  1. The method of claim 1, further comprising displaying an interface for editing the video content in response to the selections.
  1. The method of claim 1, further comprising: determining preferences for distributing the selected video content; and distributing the selected video content from the set-top box to a plurality of addresses in response to the preferences, wherein the addresses include one or more email addresses, websites, and media servers.
  1. The method of claim 5, wherein the preferences are established prior to the recording and include a list of contacts of the user available through one or more v networking sites.
  1. The method of claim 1, wherein distributing further comprises: distributing a link for a secondary user to access the selected video content stored in the set-top box.
  1. The method of claim 5, wherein the DRM parameters determines whether the selected video content is distributable to a social network site.
  1. The method of claim 8, further comprising utilizing the DRM parameters to ensure that the selected video content is not further distributed by a secondary user.
  1. The method of claim 9, wherein the preferences are received as part of the user input, and wherein the preferences include permissions for the secondary user to temporarily access the selected video content.
  1. A set-top box for managing video content comprising: a processor for executing a set of instructions; a memory in communication with the processor, the processor configured to execute the set of instructions to: receive user input to record a video content; determine DRM parameters associated with the video content, wherein the DRM parameters are established by at least of a content owner and a communications service provider and indicate at least whether the video content is recordable for distribution by a user and a maximum length of selected video content that is distributable, wherein the selected video content comprises of particular pre- specified portions of the video content designated by the content owner or the communications service provider that are recordable for distribution; and record the video content based on the DRM parameters.
  1. The set-top box of claim 11, further comprising a network interface, wherein the processor is further configured to execute the set of instructions to communicate with a plurality of addresses for distributing the recording of the video content via the network interface.
  1. The set-top box of claim 12, wherein the set-top box distributes the recording of the video content by sending a link for a secondary user to access the recording of the video content stored on a data storage component of the set-top box, and wherein the recording of the video content is streamed to the secondary user from the data storage component of the set-top box in response to a selection of the link.
  1. The set-top box of claim 11, further comprising: a camera in communication with the processor, the processor further configured to execute the set of instructions to record user content and integrate the user content into the recording of the video content.
  1. The set-top box of claim 11, wherein the DRM parameters control recording and editing of the video content, and distribution of the recording of the video content from the set-top box.
  1. A non-transitory computer readable medium comprising computer executable instructions that when executed causes one or more machines to perform operations comprising: receiving user input to record a video content; determining DRM parameters associated with the video content, wherein the DRM parameters are established by at least of a content owner and a communications service provider and indicate at least whether the video content is recordable for distribution by a user and a maximum length of selected video content that is distributable, wherein the selected video content comprises of particular pre- specified portions of the video content designated by the content owner or the communications service provider that are recordable for distribution; and record the video content based on the DRM parameters.
  1. The computer readable medium of claim 16, further comprising computer executable instructions that when executed causes the one or more machines to edit a recording of the video content based on the DRM parameters in response to receiving a request to distribute the video content.
  1. The computer readable medium of claim 16, further comprising computer executable instructions that when executed causes the one or more machines to distribute a recording of the video content by sending a link to a user to access the recording of the video content stored locally on the one or more machines, and wherein the recording of the video content is streamed to the user from the one or more machines in response to a selection of the link.
  1. The computer readable medium of claim 16, wherein the DRM parameters determines whether a recording of the video content is distributable to a social network site.
  1. The computer readable medium of claim 16, wherein the DRM parameters determines whether a recording of the video content is distributable to a video sharing site.