In the 12 months since IBC2017, SMPTE has published new standards, explored additional ways to support the media and entertainment industry and ensured that it has a sound vision and plan for its continued leadership within the M&E technology industry, writes Barbara Lange.

One of our most notable achievements has been the publication of standards within SMPTE ST 2110, Professional Media Over Managed IP Networks.

Barbara Lange

Barbara Lange

This new standards suite specifies the carriage, synchronisation, and description of separate elementary essence streams over professional internet protocol (IP) networks in real-time for live production, playout, and other professional media applications.

SMPTE ST 2110 documents provide broadcasters, producers, and media technology suppliers with the tools they need to address the industry’s real-time nature and its high quality-of-service requirements while working in the IP realm.

We also announced published standards for binding Ad-IDs to commercials and Entertainment ID Registry (EIDR) codes to programming content.

Leveraging Kantar Media’s audio watermarking technology, an open solution available for licensing, two new sets of standards and recommended practices enable persistent binding of identifiers into advertising and programming content, thereby allowing companies across the industry to move closer to the goal of full cross-platform measurement and content integration.

In another significant advance in standards development, we completed a first-of-its-kind pilot project to define a prototype SMPTE Technical Specifications (TSP) process. Through this pilot project, the Digital Production Partnership (DPP) proposed the first SMPTE TSP, which focuses on the use of the Interoperable Master Format (IMF), or SMPTE ST 2067, for broadcast and online applications.

While research always is a component of the standards development process, SMPTE undertakes complementary initiatives to provide insight into the critical issues that are transforming the media and entertainment technology industry.

At our IBC2018 stand, we offered details on the results of the SMPTE 2018 Innovation and Technology in Media Entertainment Survey, which examined how leaders are approaching specific technologies such as artificial intelligence and machine learning (AI/ML), immersive media, professional media over managed IP networks, and the Better Pixels Project.

Those interested in learning more about the Society’s work — and work underway by its member companies — now can access video of the presentations given at the SMPTE 2017 Annual Technical Conference & Exhibition (SMPTE 2017).

Available on the SMPTE YouTube channel the new content includes more than 50 videos of the expert paper presentations delivered over the one-day Symposium and three days of technical sessions during SMPTE 2017.

The technical papers themselves are available within the SMPTE Digital Library hosted on the IEEE Xplore platform.

Through a series of organisational meetings, we took time to examine the Society and to review and refine our statement of values, our vision, our mission, and our strategy going forward.

Our new values statement emphasises SMPTE’s role as a global organisation and stresses that the Society is and will continue to be inclusive, objective, financially robust, and appreciative of the efforts of its many volunteers and the opportunities and synergies presented by partners including the Hollywood Professional Association (HPA).

Of course, we also like to point out that SMPTE is not only the globally recognised and accredited standards organisation for the motion picture, television, and digital media industry, but also the longest-running standards organisation in the industry.

We created the Society’s first formal vision statement: to enable the technical framework and global professional community that makes motion picture, television and digital media available for all humanity to enjoy for artistic, educational and social purposes.

We also refreshed our mission statement: to drive the quality and evolution of motion pictures, television, and digital media through our global society of technologists, developers, and creatives, facilitating industry interoperability via the work we do on industry standards, providing relevant education, and fostering a vibrant membership community.

Keeping in mind our values, vision, and mission, we set out the following goals:

  • Create an environment in which SMPTE standards are the heart of a knowledge network — from standards development to how that content is discovered, accessed, and monetized — that further confirms SMPTE’s status as the leading standards development body in media.
  • Educate the industry on the latest technologies they will need to be successful in their jobs and careers.
  • Grow membership around the world and deliver high levels of volunteer engagement, including recognition of service, to expand the network of community.
  • Think and act with a forward-looking mindset, using the state-of-the-art tools and techniques in communications, operations, agility and product portfolio.
  • Be a valued partner with industry organisations and to harness synergies to the mutual benefit of all.

IBC2018 highlights
We had so much great news to share about standards development, membership growth, and education programs, as well as the upcoming SMPTE 2018 Annual Technical Conference & Exhibition (SMPTE 2018).

During IBC2018 the Society joined with the Audio Engineering Society (AES), Alliance for IP Media Solutions (AIMS), Advanced Media Workflow Association (AMWA), European Broadcasting Union (EBU), and Video Services Forum (VSF) to support the IP Showcase.

We also showcased new SMPTE collaborations with standards, professional, and technical partners to help increase interoperability and drive the continued advancement of entertainment technology.

Barbara Lange is Executive Director at SMPTE