FEED Issue 24


Working in conjunction with XDCAM air is Sony’s multiplatform production system, Media Backbone Hive – a home base for all the digital nectar gathered by the XDCAM air-enabled journalists in the field. Media Backbone Hive allows teams to access all content through a single shared system – whether that’s producers in the newsroom or other journalists in the field. “On the flip side, if you are in the field and you are connected to Hive, you can compile a story on your laptop with footage from anywhere,” explains Almond. “It’s all connected. You have instant access to everything. That gives remote teams a lot of power. They don’t have to duplicate resources, or even content – and they don’t have to transcode it to use it. They don’t even have to know – or care – where the content they’re accessing actually lives.” NEW LANDSCAPES “The media landscape is changing quickly, especially in news,” says Almond. “And the market is changing the most drastically in terms of traditional news delivery. The audience – especially millennials – watch traditional, linear news outlets less and less. They want to access news through social

media platforms. So this, in turn, affects how the journalists are creating news.” This new, ever-connected news consumer is continuously bombarded with messaging and information. An oft-cited study, conducted by Roger Bohn and James Short at the University of California, concluded the average American consumed 34 gigabytes – or 100,000 words – of information per day. This is a 2012 study – just as online video was coming into its own. The human brain developed under conditions where most people never ventured more than a few miles away from the place where they were born and where their social circle was more or less the same group of people for life. Where the customs from one generation to the next remained essentially unchanged. The information space we now live in is a very unnatural environment for us poor homo sapiens. If we’re going to be able to manage in this new connected world, it’s vital that we have access to highly dependable sources of factuality. “Global news agencies are seeing great advantages with these new tools,” says Almond, “as well as broadcasters with journalists in the field, it’s also newspapers.

They are online content providers who have an online audience, so they’re now seeing the benefits of operating with a news production system, as well.” NEW DEMANDS Without a good technology solution, these new newsrooms could collapse under the demands being placed on them. There is simply too much information and too many potential stories to tell to rely on linear workflows. Cloud technologies are hugely scalable and can offer the same sets of tools to multiple journalists and newsrooms, with varying degrees of permissions and customisations, allowing for a synergy of collaboration. These tools also make it easier to push out stories to multiple online platforms, whether publishing to your own website, to social media outlets or to broadcast TV. “Go back 30-odd years and you had a choice of just four TV channels,” Almond notes. “Now it’s millions of different outlets. You need to get your content out to multiple platforms. “The thing is, your budget is not going to increase necessarily. If you take a venture into a new system, you’re looking for a ROI, whether that’s to get new audiences or hire more journalists, but there needs to be a benefit. The world is changing fast. We want to enable journalists to report from wherever the story breaks.”


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