Why Smart Metadata is Essential - Vizrt has a View

Without metadata, the whole process of automating production and ultimately collaborating falls apart. Ximena Araneda, EVP Media Workflows and Playout provides a view from Vizrt.

The Broadcast Bridge: Can you give us a perspective on the importance of metadata and how you see its value changing?

Ximena Araneda: Metadata is important and has been an enabler for doing media asset management. It is what makes media an asset and drives searching, organization, and content identification. With more outputs and increased need to streamline production - metadata is enabling more automated production within the broadcaster. It is the key that decides what an orchestration layer should do with an asset. Another important factor is metadata exchange. The metadata does not stop in your facility, but goes via initiatives like AS-11 by Advanced Media Workflow Association to other broadcasters. The benefit compared to the cost of metadata will only continue to be in favor of more metadata, as it is shared more effectively, and the basis for more automated production.

The Broadcast Bridge:  What types of metadata does your product capture?

Ximena Araneda:  Viz One uses both descriptive, administrative and technical metadata. This kind of metadata provides functionality such as resource discovery, interoperability, media lifecycle management and more. Metadata may also be present in the form of annotations enabling more powerful search, enhanced content description, automatic clip creation, and much more. The system also relies heavily on central metadata taxonomies such as dictionaries, thesauri, and directories.

Last but not least is, of course, our graphics metadata that we handle in all Vizrt products, making sure that we can store, reuse, export, etc to all interconnected systems.

With the power of having meta-graphics clients avoid double work, avoid storing duplicates of content, increase speed to air and easily repurpose graphics and its metadata for multi-platform purposes.

The Broadcast Bridge:  Please provide an example of how metadata is incorporated into a typical workflow using your product and the benefit this brings

Ximena Araneda:  Search and media discovery is the bread and butter of metadata workflows in our system. Beyond this the workflow is automated production typically coupled with automatic or user based task management. A common scenario is for handling media ingest, quality control, multi-platform distribution and archiving of the media. As media enters the system, it will be matched against a pre-created asset placeholder, and that placeholder is connected to a user operated ingest task. The operator can then verify that the media is associated with the correct asset and take action on that task, that will reflect a change in administrative metadata, triggering another task based workflow for e.g. quality control, where the media automatically will be sent off to an external party for verification. The result of the quality control will then update additional administrative metadata, where another operator can verify the results and take action on that task, driving the workflow further.

This type of workflow brings out better control of the lifecycle of the media, allowing for catching mistakes and errors and then act upon these in a more controlled environment.

Ximena Araneda: Search and media discovery is the bread and butter of metadata workflows in our system.

Ximena Araneda: Search and media discovery is the bread and butter of metadata workflows in our system.

The Broadcast Bridge:  What’s next: how might metadata be used in future as a business or editorial driver with your product?

Ximena Araneda:  The indirect business driver we see is that metadata will be populated with a higher degree of automation. The enabler will be new technologies such as image analysis for face recognition, speech-to-text, and object recognition, and many more. The end result will be a higher degree of metadata and more automated rules and tools that use that data. Finding footage of a particular person, or past comments on a particular topic, will be just a few clicks away for the producer. We also believe that with the social media explosion, keeping track of use data will be more and more important in the planning stage of producing a story, in order to take decisions on how the story creation should be done, and on what platform to target similar content.

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