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ISCC - Content Identifiers#

The ISCC is a modern, generic, and open content identifier

iscc-sample

Motivation#

With the advent of blockchain technology the Internet is moving towards a network of peer-to-peer transactions. Increasing amounts of dynamic, short-lived and granular contents need to be managed and require new and innovative tools.

A crucial prerequisite for content-related transactions to succeed in this new and demanding enviroment is the capability to easily address and identify content. Yet many industries that deal with digital content do not even have strandard identifiers. There is no existing solution for those industries that deal with short-lived or granular content such as journalism. There is also no widely adopted, generic identifier for digital images.

The overhead and costs of manually assigning and tracking identifiers for such contents is prohibitive. But there is a solution to the problem: Auto-generated identifiers created algorithmically from the content itself.

In a multi-sided ecosystem anybody may have a legitimate interest to generate or lookup an identifier for some digital content.

Open and accessible standard identifiers, that are specifically designed to manage digital content are fundamental for blockchain based transactions and sales activities in our increasingly heterogeneous media environment.

By using standardized, decentralized, algorithmic identifiers for digital content, all ecosystem participants can engage more efficiently in content-related transactions.

Key Differentiators#

Existing Media Identifiers ISCC Content Identifier
Centralized issuance Decentralized issuance
Industry specific overspecialization Generic content identifier
None or human curated semantics Algorithmic similarity & deduplication
High management costs Low management costs
High barrier of entry Low barrier of entry
Not designed for blockchain storage Designed for and registered on blockchain

How it works#

ISCC identifiers are generated algorithmically from the content itself. Content files are proccessed to build the identifier. The ISCC does not have to be manually assigned, neither does it have to be carried around or embedded within the content. The content itself is the source and authority of the ISCC Code.

The ISCC Code is a unique, hierarchically structured, composite identifier. It is built from a generic and balanced mix of content-derived, locality-sensitive and similarity-preserving hashes generated from metadata and content.

iscc-sample

The latest version of these pages can be found at iscc.codes