Octopus7 software has been used by Radio Liberty for the creation of TV news programme Current Time, a new joint production with Voice of America, undertaken with public and private broadcasters and internet portals in Georgia, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Moldova, and Ukraine. Drawing on a network of reporters throughout the region, it presents a daily half-hour programme, offering content not available on state-controlled media to provide a new angle on local events.
“We obviously already had many journalistic resources in place, but it was our use of Octopus Newsroom to manage our agency feeds over the last few years that aided the transition to video news programming,” explained Radio Liberty’s Michal Weiss
Originally installed for the radio news operation six years ago, the use of the software had been limited to managing incoming multi-lingual wires. As many as 120 concurrent users were logging into the system which was a central part of the radio news production workflow.
“Octopus5 was useful but we were under-using it. It was only when investigating how to organise the video news department that we understood its full potential. We looked at Czech TV and reviewed their news operation; only then did we realise that the new Octopus7 could deliver the whole news planning and production functionality we needed, far beyond the feed management features we had been using,” he continued.
Radio Liberty opted to use Newtec’s Tricaster video production system whose API communicates with Octopus via Newsmaker’s Newscaster tool. Using watch-folders, files and data are copied between Tricaster and Octopus, creating place holders, scripts and rundowns ready for playout. Instead of manually importing text into the prompters, scripts are now managed centrally and sent to the Autoscript devices via Newscaster using MOS.
“The workflow is extremely effective, leading to a huge increase in productivity. Octopus’ automated rundowns and collaborative features are exceptional and the system is extremely stable. Importantly, the whole system has been ten to twenty times cheaper than a typical broadcast solution, which is crucial for us as a new player in the television sector,” remarked Weiss.
Other features of Octopus such as social media integration are now ready to be rolled out to journalists.