Prime to digitise media archives

Original content stored on mixture of tape and film

Television and radio broadcaster Prime Media has embarked on a digitisation project for its content over the next seven years.

With archives stored at its Canberra, Orange, Newcastle and Wollongong locations, Prime has contracted DAMsmart to provide digitisation and hosted digital asset management (DAM) services until 2018

Prime CTO Gerry Smith said the company has been entrenched in country Australia for many years, sharing the good times and the bad with many regional communities.

"We have great audiovisual archives, which contain some rare and unseen footage of major events that have taken place throughout regional Australia. We want to make this footage available in a contemporary format, while at the same time maintaining the integrity of the culturally significant collection," Smith said.

"To maintain the archives they need to be digitised and stored somewhere safe. DAMsmart delivered an end-to-end solution that will preserve the integrity of the archive as well making it accessible across the network."

Once all the network archives are digitised, DAMsmart will deliver the digital archive to Prime on LTO media. Prime will be able to view the footage and request shots. DAMsmart will then deliver the requested files in a production quality format via FTP or external hard drive to the editing team.

Prime editors can build on the descriptive metadata that already exists, increasing the ability to search the collection.

DAMsmart’s media and preservation manager, Joe Kelly, said the project involves digitising several thousand hours of footage sitting on various video tape formats, including U-matic, Betacam and DVCPro, and 16 and 35mm film.

The content will then be accessible to Prime stations through the hosted Digital Asset Management (DAM) platform which allows access through a secure Web client and integrates with Prime’s workflows.

DAMsmart is also relocating the media from the regional network locations back to Mitchell.

Follow Rodney Gedda on Twitter: @rodneygedda

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