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5 May 2022

Sinclair strips MAM from vocab with help from Telestream Cloud

US video processing and monitoring specialist Telestream announced one of the biggest customer deals at NAB 2022, with Sinclair Broadcast committing to Telestream Cloud Services in a big way.

This new five-year contract extension helps underscore a core message delivered during Telestream’s press conference in Las Vegas about the vendor’s ability to grow organically, rather than relying on inorganic growth via M&A activity.

“We have stripped media asset management from our vocabulary,” declared Sinclair’s Mike Palmer, rather ironically given his job title of Senior Director of Media Management.

This might be interpreted as a damning assessment for anyone in the business of media asset management or digital asset management, but we feel this is probably supposed to be symbolic of the broadcast industry’s cloud revolution and pivot to centralized content sharing between stations.

You can dress it up any way you want, but in our book this is still media asset management.

It’s no secret that the media world has been slow to embrace the cloud – with broadcasters among the slowest. Many large broadcasters have designed and built in-house systems for content preparation workflows, which they have struggled to replicate in the cloud, and this is good news for Telestream – which enjoyed its biggest year on record in 2021.

Running on Sinclair’s public cloud compute environment, the broadcaster is using the Telestream Vantage Media Processing Platform for ingest, preparation, and distribution across both cloud and on-premise media and orchestration workflows. It includes Telestream’s content management products, DIVA and Kumulate, for archival and media sharing workflows.

DIVA stands for Digital Video Archives, managing content across broadcast, production and archive operations, while Kumulate is a content storage system that creates an internal newswire system with automated media processing to simplify linked scripts and video content for Sinclair’s thousands of journalists. This allows Sinclair to share hundreds of new stories internally every day, which helps increase the quality and efficiency of newscasts.

In other words, these two products combine to create a turbocharged media asset management system for the cloud era, with a few bells and whistles that you wouldn’t find in a rudimentary MAM.

The deal is set to bring substantial cost savings for Sinclair – reducing its hardware footprint across its 60 station facilities by centralizing content in the Vantage Cloud Port. This is particularly significant for Sinclair’s news stations, which typically undergo a laborious manual process of using FTP (File Transfer Protocol) to transfer files between stations.

As an existing customer of Telestream’s Wirecast technology for news distribution to multiple smaller broadcasters and social media channels. This is an all-in-one TV broadcast and live streaming control room – with software handling capture, live production and encoding for broadcast to multiple platforms and severs simultaneously.

Telestream had a lot to showcase at NAB, having made four acquisitions since anyone last appeared at an in-person tradeshow. The most recent is Sherpa Digital Media, a virtual events company, which we understand is being integrated into Wirecast, although Telestream was still not in a position to elaborate on these plans during its NAB presser.