How to protect my video course from theft?

by bostjan33 Banned
18 replies
Hey all,

I'm just about to launch my (big) video course. At first, I wanted to sell it as a downloadable file, but now I won't go that way because of theft threat.
The more I look online, the more I'm getting concerned about those nasty thieves. So, my question is - is there a good way to protect my course from being stolen?

Here are my findings so far:

- Prevent downloads via DRM or pass protection
- Dynamic watermarking
- but, user can also screencast my video and still share it for free. This is currently my main concern.

Pls share your experience on this, ok? Thanks!
#protect #theft #video
  • Profile picture of the author onSubie
    You can secure them with Amazon S3 and then stream the videos behind a membership site.

    Having the videos on Amazon S3 also takes the streaming load off your servers.

    You pretty much can't prevent screen recording even with the above method so a watermark makes sure any copies at least point to your legit site.

    But screen recording and rendering and converting is a lot more work than simply emailing a download link or uploading files to sharing sites.
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    • Profile picture of the author Randall Magwood
      Originally Posted by onSubie View Post

      You can secure them with Amazon S3 and then stream the videos behind a membership site.

      Having the videos on Amazon S3 also takes the streaming load off your servers.

      You pretty much can't prevent screen recording even with the above method so a watermark makes sure any copies at least point to your legit site.

      But screen recording and rendering and converting is a lot more work than simply emailing a download link or uploading files to sharing sites.
      This is actually a great point. Watermarking will let the buyer know where the video was created (by you)... just in case they wanted more info/knowledge from you.

      You could maybe put it on tradebit... or use a product like DLGuard to thrwart the small time crooks. But true hackers online for IM products are like those mange dogs on the movie "I Am Legend". Can't prevent everything... try your best, and for every theft, create 10 more sales.
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    • Profile picture of the author Pindich
      Originally Posted by onSubie View Post

      You can secure them with Amazon S3 and then stream the videos behind a membership site.

      Having the videos on Amazon S3 also takes the streaming load off your servers.

      You pretty much can't prevent screen recording even with the above method so a watermark makes sure any copies at least point to your legit site.

      But screen recording and rendering and converting is a lot more work than simply emailing a download link or uploading files to sharing sites.
      Agree totally with onSubie. I also wish to add that you should try not to think too much about those who will steal your product because with videos, if someone really want to steal them they will.

      Sometimes it pays to instead leverage on those who steal your videos to profit even more. Watermark your videos, even within the videos use hooks that will always point back to you. That way, people who really want to know the real author will always know how to get back to you and even buy some more.
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  • Profile picture of the author Edson Buchanan
    A few years ago I had the same concern that you are having right now. What I eventually learned was if the thief wants it, they will take it. These thief's all hang in the same websites and really never Take Action.

    I hope that makes sense but I would not worry to much about it because it will not effect your business to the honest people who will still buy and put your course to use.

    I do recommend Amazon S3 as well
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  • Profile picture of the author bostjan33
    Banned
    Ok, thanks guys, I'll take a look at S3 and go from them.
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  • Profile picture of the author absolutelee
    I've got scores of video courses online. I assume that most of them are pirated. I focus on what I can control, making money. Not on what I can't control. After all, it is a digital product.
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  • Profile picture of the author wfletch24
    As others have said regardless of what you do it will probably be pirated at some point. Membership software can definitely make the process more difficult. I also recommend s3 for video hosting. It's a great service, a little confusing at first but great.
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  • Profile picture of the author seasoned
    The idea of streaming is BAD! BESIDES, many will figure out a way to defeat it. DRM isn't much better. In BOTH cases, I consider that in the value. Often times, I see it as worthless, and WON'T BUY!

    I have generally been AGAINST copy protection because it hurts the customer. The software market has had copyprotection from almost the beginning. Maybe 2 years after the IBM PC came out, almost EVERYONE DROPPED it!

    Steve
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  • Profile picture of the author AdamPayne
    As a product creator my advice is don't sweet it.

    If the black hatters want it, they will get it. And the ones that download it from such folk have the wrong mindset to succeed anyhow.

    Of course take the normal precautions, but do not let it slow you down and don't lose sleep.
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  • Profile picture of the author enterprisemind
    I like the idea that the watermarking will let them know where the content originally came from even if stolen. The bottomline is, when a real person learns something from somebody that they consider irreplaceable they are more inclined to go back to that source for more information. You could look at the theft as free advertising.(with watermarking)
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  • Profile picture of the author AlexSchneider
    What Adam says: if they want to copy and distribute it - they will.

    Focus on your real customers and provide value to them. Blackhatters just want to fill up hd space. They never take action.

    If you are unsure - release one section of your course as a separate WSO and see for yourself how this turns out.

    You will be surprised (in a very good way) :-) This is my personal experience as a product creator as well.
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    • Profile picture of the author Steve B
      Usually your decision will be made based on "trade-offs" . . . ease of access and use for your customers vs. product security.

      The more difficult accessing your videos become, and the more secure you make them, the more pain you will cause your legitimate paying customers.

      So you have to find the right balance.

      I tend to agree with others that have said you should take normal and realistic precautions but don't worry about the hard core pirates that you can't stop.

      I know some product creators that always include a "resources" section in the back of each product with the thought that even if the product is pirated, hopefully a few people will click on the links in the resources section and a few extra sales or affiliate commissions will be made.

      Steve
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      • Profile picture of the author JohnMcCabe
        Whether it's a course, a condo or a car, if a determined, competent thief wants what you have, they will get it.

        The best you can do is help the honest people stay honest. Things like streaming from a service like S3, putting access behind a membership script to control access, etc. Kind of like keeping your car doors locked and not leaving the keys inside when you run into the store.
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  • Profile picture of the author wyattclayton
    Banned
    [DELETED]
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    • Profile picture of the author Improbable
      Originally Posted by wyattclayton View Post

      I use Streaming Video Provider storing/hosting my video-tutorials I record and sell - they are now launching a highly secure feature called "HLS Encryption". They enabled this for my account just to see how it works nad I must say I am amazed! This is really strong and almost impossible for someone to break it with any tools.

      Private Video Hosting & Secure Video Streaming Service

      Nice! I wonder why they used 128-bit AES instead of 256...




      EDIT: Both AES-128 and AES-256 are all-but uncrackable, so no worries. I was just wondering why SVP didn't use 256 and promote their encryption as "TOP OF THE LINE!!" I guess they don't see best-of-breed encryption as a big selling point.
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  • Profile picture of the author DubDubDubDot
    Anything worth buying is worth pirating. So if your stuff is good (or at least the marketing material makes it seem good), it's going to be pirated. That's just something you need to get over. Stay on top of the DMCA takedowns, which shouldn't be a huge problem if you are small and your stuff isn't all over the place.
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  • Profile picture of the author Rickeydt
    I recommend Amazon S3

    The harsh reality is if they want to steal your material they can... so use what you know and take the recommendation of other warriors.

    But really focus your attention on what you can control and on providing and continuing to providing value to your real customers... and it should be nothing more then a minor snag.
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  • Profile picture of the author JeffreyMichel
    You can't be 100% sure that your content will remain totally protected, it will get snatched and shared, it's just inevitable, stop worrying about it
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  • Profile picture of the author webproishere
    1) Use as background on your vidz, your web site logo/url. This CAN'T be remove or blur
    2) Watermark
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