(19) United States
(12) Patent Application Publication (io) Pub. No.: US 2004/0039916 Al
Aldis et al. (43) Pub. Date: Feb. 26,2004
(54) SYSTEM AND METHOD FOR
MULTI-TIERED LICENSE MANAGEMENT
AND DISTRIBUTION USING NETWORKED
(76) Inventors: David Aldis, Surrey (CA); Brian
Kejser, Vancouver (CA); Innes
Muecke, Nova Scolia (CA); Heinrich
Henning Riebe, Vancouver (CA)
Stacey J. Longanecker
Roylance, Abrams, Berdo & Goodman, L.L.P.
1300 19th Street, N.W.
Washington, DC 20036 (US)
(21) Appl. No.: 10/434,355
(22) Filed: May 9, 2003
Related U.S. Application Data
(60) Provisional application No. 60/379,105, filed on May 10, 2002.
(51) Int. CI.7 11041. 9/00
(52) U.S. CI 713/177; 705/59
A system and method are provided for the distribution ol digital licenses through a multi-level distribution chain using one or more clearinghouses. The system supports content providers, distributors, and end users. Content providers create and provide licenses. Distributors acquire licenses from content providers and upstream distributors, and can modify them in accordance with the terms of the original licenses. Distributors digitally sign modified licenses before providing to other users. Distributors optionally extend licenses to create new licenses and distribute them. End users acquire, download and activate licenses. Content providers and distributors can obtain tracking reports from clearinghouses detailing transactions (e.g., purchases, acquisitions, activations, and license compliance) associated with licenses as they progress down the distribution chain and are finally activated.