Publishers of sheet music are generally reluctant in distributing their content via the Internet. Although online sheet music distribution's advantages are numerous the potential risk of Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) infringement, e.g. illegal online distributions, disables any innovation propensity.
While active protection techniques only deter external risk factors, additional technology is necessary to adequately treat further risk factors. For several media types including music scores watermarking technology has been developed, which ebeds information in data by suitable data modifications. Furthermore, fingerprinting or perceptual hasing methods have been developed and are being applied especially for audio. These methods allow the identification of content without prior modifications.
In this article we motivate the development of watermarking and fingerprinting technologies for sheet music. Outgoing from potential limitations of watermarking methods we explain why fingerprinting methods are important for sheet music and address potential applications. Finally we introduce a condept for fingerprinting of sheet music.