News Production & Post

Al Jazeera goes global with DIVA

5 January 2006

Front Porch Digital (FPD) has secured a deal with Al Jazeera International to streamline the broadcaster’s digital video archives in preparation for the launch of its global news channel next spring. The agreement will see FPD install DIVArchive systems at Al Jazeera International broadcast centres in Doha, London, Kuala Lumpur, and Washington, D.C., and also provide a range of ‘ad hoc’ professional services.

Thomson has been selected as systems integrator on the project. Thomson and Front Porch have previously worked together on a number of archive installations throughout Europe and Asia, including the installation of a similar system in Al Jazeera’s Washington bureau. The broadcast infrastructure also features Grass Valley HD Profile video servers, StorageTek tape libraries, Grass Valley NewsBrowse web-based browsing and editing systems, and Harris automation.

"We spent a lot of time considering all the archive management options available to us. Switching operations to four international broadcast centres in sequence presents unique challenges. Deciding to go HD added an extra list of requirements to our specifications," said Steve Jedowski, director of technology for Al Jazeera International.

Jedowski said that the broadcaster was confident FPD "could handle the complexity of this project, our HD requirements, and our need to connect four archives separated by great distances. They have already proven their capabilities with a number of global media brands that operate multiple sites all running on DIVArchive," he said.

Meanwhile, Front Porch Digital has been awarded a Royal Television Society (RTS) 2005 Technology Award for its DIVAworks solution, which won in the content management category.

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