Published on TV Newscheck here
Stations may be easing back into their studios as the pandemic abates, but cloud workflows that had been adopted out of necessity for field production are holding fast. Above, Avid’s Media Central Collaborate encompasses planning, assignments, task management and project tracking. It can be accessed on a web client, through a mobile app and also through the Media Composer and Adobe Premiere editing systems.
Virtualizing The Station’s Walls Sam Peterson
Bitcentral has seen a significant change in the way its customers use its Oasis asset management and archiving system since the onset of the pandemic, with a lot more stations using the web-based remote contribution feature as a way for reporters to send packages back as files, says COO Sam Peterson. At the same time, use of the Create browser-based proxy editor also dramatically increased, as journalists working from home started using it to search the Oasis system for the source content to edited packages, with the goal of further repurposing.
“More and more of this is happening outside the walls of the station, and I don’t think it will ever go back the way that it was,” Peterson says. “The complication that that’s creating is the workflow related to the other content that maybe doesn’t get used the first time around.”
As Peterson explains, if an MMJ shoots 20 minutes of video and then edits it down to a 2:30 package, there might be 16 minutes of content that didn’t get used but wasn’t thrown away. In the past, other journalists at the station looking to produce a digital package or another broadcast segment on the same topic would access that source content through the local storage. But that stopped happening due to COVID, when those personnel were home.
The expanded use of Create created some challenges, as the system was initially intended for 10 to 20 journalists at a station to be able to do simple timeline editing of content without having to use a dedicated editor like an Avid Media Composer or Adobe Premiere. As such, it was designed to work over a LAN, not a WAN like the internet, and so the workflows had to be tweaked a bit.
“We’ve been working really hard with a couple customers in particular, so the station walls aren’t the station walls anymore,” Peterson says. “There’s very little that has to happen inside the station anymore. We’re trying to get those tools to be available everywhere.”
Like Avid, Bitcentral sees a hybrid model for archiving content being used by most customers going forward with a mix of on-premise and cloud storage, either public or private. For its part, Bitcentral stores the Oasis database with proxy video in the cloud, allowing federated search across large groups like Nexstar and Fox. Meanwhile, the hi-res material resides at stations on local storage.
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