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Originally posted by amikrazy
I could believe this theory if the symbol was the same each time. But the dot patterns were different and they seemed to be in the actual movie frame (i.e. not a single frame unto itself). The dots changed position. I guess I can look into digital movie projectors for some hints.
CAP comes in two forms: either a code printed on the sprocket edge of a motion picture print, or a multi-dot pattern that is printed in a couple of frames in various segments of a film print of a theatrically exhibited motion picture. This codes and patterns are referred to as a CAP code.
The code identifies the particular theater that is playing the print of a movie and/or distributor of the print. It's added to the print before it is sent to a theater. When dots are used, they're arranged in a unique pattern as identification.
The usefulness of the watermarks is not what bothers me, though. I am absolutely outraged that they stuck these things into movies and then charged me to see this vandalism. Like I said, I have only seen the watermarks in 2 movies. The first time was during Kill Bill vol 1. The watermarks are small iconic patterns of orange/brown dots. They flashed on the screen at least 3 or 5 times during Kill Bill, at least once during a black and white scene. The patterns reminded me of the logos the aliens in "V" had on their uniforms, a bit like the old Burlington Mills logo, except that the MPAA watermarks are dots only, not dots and dashes, as far as I could tell in the split second the vandalism jolted me from my blissful state of brainless entertainment.
"They don't publicly talk about this," said Brad Hunt of the Motion Picture Association of America, "but it's a well-known fact that forensic watermarking is being used on theatrical release prints because that's how we can determine sources of piracy."
So what do they do when people complain about the hideous artifacts that appear throughout the movie. Also known as groups of brown dots pasted over the film in random spots for a few frames throughout the film. I don't know about anyone else, but I find these extremely irritating, almost as irritating as the 'PIRACY IS THEFT' video I have to watch after *buying* a DVD, and before viewing a film in a theatre, that I've *paid* to see.
WCityMike writes "Steve Kraus, a Chicago film projectionist, noted in this week's Movie Answer Man column that movie studios are quite purposefully putting 'large reddish brown spots that flash in the middle of the picture, usually placed in a light area' in order to ruin computer-compressed pirated copies of films. Among recent films that feature these spots are 'Ali,' 'Behind Enemy Lines,' '28 Days Later,' 'Freddy vs. Jason' and 'Underworld.' (I guess they had to destroy the movies in order to save them ... )"