Recently in New York City, Avid and many of our customers were front and center at three industry events – SVG TechSummit, NewsTechForum and The Sports Broadcasting Hall of Fame – that took place over the course of 48 hours. The SVG Summit brought together over 1,200 sports industry professionals from around the world to discuss challenges, solutions and objections related to sports production and distribution. Hosted by SVG and TVNewscheck and co-located within the SVG Summit, NewsTECHForum saw executives from broadcast and cable news networks take a look at the rapidly changing world of news storytelling. Rounding out the two days, SVG’s Sports Broadcasting Hall of Fame honored individuals from across the entire spectrum of sports broadcasting who have impacted the way sports television is produced. Together, the three events provided an incredible opportunity to gain industry insights and foster relationships.
The overall theme of the SVG Summit was the rapid pace at which technology is changing and the challenges sports teams face to keep up as well as the discussion around working in the cloud versus on-premise and how to organize/access files, archiving, and security.
Avid hosted a presentation by Dan Keene, vice president, system architecture, WWE, discussing how asset management can be used for disaster recovery. This proved to be a hot topic as the 15-minute presentation ended up going long due to the amount of audience interest and questions. Dan explained how Avid’s engineering team worked closely with WWE to forge their new workflow, and showed skeptics who previously thought of Avid as a closed environment that we’re open, flexible and want to work with our customers. “Having a DR plan is critical for any business,” Dan mentions in his presentation. “But having some semblance of what your going to do if you lose your donut maker – if you will – is something that every technology and business person in this room should be thinking about. None of our success would have been possible without Avid’s willingness to qualify and test hardware that we really needed to make it work.”
Dan went on to say that their Disaster Recover, “is representative of our Avid storage, it’s also representative of Interplay, basically every single Avid sub-system that makes your system work, there is a copy at our main site and at DR” allowing them to be transparent to the business operations.
During the Summit’s Technology Showcase, attendees were very interested in Avid’s sports solutions being shown in our booth. Everyone from perennial powerhouse conferences and top-level universities to mobile video truck companies came by to talk about topics like virtual reality and to see our latest offerings—including the Avid Playmaker advanced slow-motion replay and media highlights editing server, the Avid Spark telestration tool for drawing graphical elements directly onto live video, and the Avid Maestro Media Engine for ingesting and playing out media in multiple formats.
At the NewsTECHForum across the hall, Avid teamed up with Boston broadcaster WGBH to present a case study titled, “Order from Chaos – Moving to an Integrated Production Ecosystem.” Avid account manager Bill Reinhart moderated the discussion between panelists Chris Fournelle, director of post-production, The OutPost at WGBH and WGBH News production manager Bob Judge. They shared the daily challenges caused by siloed operations and segmented business divisions, and how WGBH Production Services has unified its workflow across all program production teams using Avid’s MediaCentral Platform. Avid iNEWS has extended WGBH’s integrated media processes to the newsroom to overcome legacy issues and enable new processes. Chris Fournelle summed it up best when he said, “We no longer worry about what we need to do; we are now thinking of what we can do next; we’re dreaming again.”
The Sports Broadcasting Hall of Fame has always been my favorite event of the year. The event brings together folks who are passionate about broadcasting—either behind the scenes or in front of the camera—to honor sports broadcasting legends, many of whom were my childhood heroes and inspired me to work in this industry. It’s a night to celebrate those trailblazers. And this year’s inductee list was inspiring. They included Robin Roberts from Good Morning America and Verne Lundquist from CBS, who I grew up listening to and watching. TNT basketball sideline reporter Craig Sager’s induction was met with an emotional response as he was unable to attend due to his battle with cancer, which he sadly succumbed to just days later.
One of the reasons why I love this ceremony is the fact that 100% of the proceeds go to the SVG Sports Broadcasting Fund, which helps take care of families in the industry who have experienced unexpected tragedy. This year’s event raised $195,000 for the fund.
Overall, it was a terrific two days filled with learning and inspiring moments. I believe we all left with a feeling of optimism for 2017 and what’s in store for the sports and news broadcasting industries. Be sure to visit the Avid website for more information about Avid’s sports and news production solutions.