In today's world, users who create and license digital assets may be unaware of how their assets are being used online. To help with this, we offer an integration with Digimarc, a leader in digital watermarking technology. If you enable the Digital Watermarking feature in the Widen Collective, an embedded, invisible digital watermark that includes information about an asset can be automatically placed on most conversion formats when the asset is downloaded. The watermark stays with the asset as it's manipulated, copied, or transformed from one file format to another, bringing greater security and monitoring of digital assets and allowing assets to be tracked and easily detected as they're used online.
If a watermarked asset is found online, Digimarc will create a report with the website the asset was found on. Watermarks include an image ID that ties back to the download of the asset from the Collective. Each download image ID is unique. The image ID can be used to find the order in the Collective, which includes user information if a user has logged in before downloading. If the user hasn't logged in, the image ID will be indicated as an anonymous user.
Note that use information of a watermarked asset cannot be found if the asset is on a website that requires a user to log in. For example, a watermarked asset used in an app like Facebook cannot be found.
Watermarks can be applied to most file formats, including BMP, GIF (except animated,which aren't supported), JPG (except lossless and progressive, which aren't supported), PCT, PCX, PNG, PSD (multiple layers combined into a single layer), TGA, and TIF (except tiled images, which aren't supported). Watermarks can also be applied to share links and embed codes. Contact the Widen Central Support team for help setting that up. When they're added to share links or embed codes, you may see a slight delay when viewing the link or embed code for the first time.
View Digimarc Images in Photoshop
You can link to and view Digimarc images in Photoshop using the free Digimarc for Images plugin from Adobe Add-ons. The plugin, which had come preinstalled on previous versions of Photoshop, was removed with the recent release of Adobe CC 2015. The service is still functional, however, and you now simply need to install the plugin within the program files on your hard drive when using Adobe CC 2015 and 2017.
Download the appropriate plugin for your computer from the Digimarc Guardian Images for Adobe Photoshop CC 2015 page at http://payoff.digimarc.com/dgfi-photoshop/photoshop-2015.html.
After the plugin is downloaded, drag and drop the contents of the folder into the following path on your hard drive.
- On a Mac: Macintosh HD\Applications\Adobe Photoshop CC 2015\Plug-ins\
- On a PC: C:\Program Files\Adobe\Photoshop\Plug-ins
Digimarc watermarks can be applied only to assets greater than 300 pixels in size.
In addition, watermarks cannot be applied to:
- Original formats
- Video assets
- Files with transparency, like PNGs
- Assets downloaded to file sharing tools or from collection share pages
By default, if a watermark cannot be applied to an asset format, you will receive an error message when downloading the asset. As the site admin, you can request this be changed to always allow the asset to be downloaded even if it's not watermarked by contacting the Central Support team. There are, however, security implications with that method.
Track Found Assets
You can track assets that have a Digimarc watermark by their image ID and locate the order the asset was downloaded from in the Collective.
To locate the image ID, download the asset from the website it's on, then open it in Photoshop. Select Filter > Digimarc > Read Watermark.
To find the order the asset was downloaded from:
- Log in to the Collective.
- Go to the Admin app.
- Click Download Receipts under Order Settings in the left navigation.
- Enter the image ID (not the Digimarc ID) into the Receipt Id box.
- Click Search.
The order the asset was downloaded from will display.
The image ID will also display on the Downloads sheet in Quick Insights exports.
The Digimarc Watermarking feature is sold as a subscription that's renewable annually and requires a maintenance fee. Digimarc also requires a license fee, which must be contracted directly with them. The license allows users to embed watermarks into an unlimited number of assets; watermarks used are unique to the assets that are downloaded.
Contact the Central Support team to enable or disable the feature.
We also offer the Watermarking feature at no cost. The Central Support team can also help you enable or disable that feature.
You must enable the Search Download Receipts permission for users to search for receipts that confirm others have downloaded assets with the Digimarc watermark.