Geospatial Digital Rights Management Reference Model (GeoDRM RM)

In March, 2007 the Open Geospatial Consortium, Inc. (OGC®) membership approved the Geospatial Digital Rights Management Reference Model (GeoDRM RM), an abstract specification for the management of digital rights in the area of geospatial data and services. The GeoDRM RM is Topic 18 of the OpenGIS® Abstract Specification.


The goal of the GeoDRM effort in the OGC is to make sure that a larger market has access to geospatial resources through a well understood and common mechanism that enables more than today's "all or nothing" protection. A major motivation for this effort is the need to manage the "ownership obstacle to data sharing" in spatial data infrastructure scenarios.

The GeoDRM RM defines the framework for web service mechanisms and rights languages to articulate, manage and protect the rights of all participants in the geographic information marketplace, including the owners of intellectual

property and the users who wish to use it. A key aspect of the GeoDRM RM is that it is abstract, or general, rather than specifying implementation details about types of agreements. Such agreements might range from an open content sharing model to a cost-recovery program of a public or government organization or a full commercial vendor license model.

The OGC membership will use the GeoDRM RM in developing OpenGIS Implementation Specifications for open interfaces and encodings that will enable SDI and diverse systems to participate in transactions involving data, services and intellectual property protection. More information about GeoDRM activities can be found on the OGC Technical Committee's GeoRM Working Group page.