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FCC Chairman Ajit Pai signaled Friday that the FCC is preparing to start accepting next-gen TV (ATSC 3.0) license applications and that the Media Bureau is even now working on an order to wrap up some open issues, including the local simulcasting requirement for stations without a viable partner, ...

That includes resolving simulcasting issue and cable recon petitions

FCC Chairman Ajit Pai signaled Friday that the FCC is preparing to start accepting next-gen TV (ATSC 3.0) license applications and that the Media Bureau is even now working on an order to wrap up some open issues, including the local simulcasting requirement for stations without a viable partner, and a second order to resolve various petitions for reconsideration (filed by cable operators).

Pai said that some IT work remained on the new licensing form, but that the requisite tweaks to the license management database should be done by the second quarter of the year.

ATSC 3.0 is the new TV transmission standard that will be delivering higher-definition pictures as well as provide for interactivity, targeted advertising, and other next-gen features.

The chairman let that high-tech cat out of the bag in a speech Friday to the Association of Federal Communications Consulting Engineers.

NCTA-The Television & Internet Association, the American Cable Association and the American TV Alliance all had issues with the FCC's initial order laying out the framework for the ATSC 3.0 rollout (https://www.broadcastingcable.com/news/channel-battle-rages-atsc-rollout-172308), including what cable ops saw as a vague simulcast requirement.

The National Association of Broadcasters wanted a flexible standard for waivers of the FCC's requirement that TV stations' current ATSC 1.0 transmission and next gen ATSC 3.0 signal be simulcast.

The cable groups also petitioned the FCC to reconsider:

● The decision not to require separate negotiations for first-time multichannel video programming distributor carriage of ATSC 3.0 signals.
● The decision to permit low power and translator stations to flash-cut to ATSC 3.0.
● The decision to permit broadcasters to degrade their signals without warning viewers and MVPDs beforehand.

There are already some ATSC 3.0 stations on the air, but those are test beds in five markets: Chicago; Dallas; Phoenix; Lansing, Mich.; and Santa Barbara, Calif.

Pai said that when he had visited the test in Phoenix back in August, he "experienced a full-on interactive experience that would have been unimaginable back when this speaker was a child holding the rabbit ears just to enable the Pai family to get better reception of “The Jeffersons” on broadcast TV," adding in reference to the game-changing potential of the standard: "Movin’ on up, indeed."

Author: John Eggerton
Posted: February 22, 2019, 10:37 pm
The House Consumer Protection Subcommittee has identified the witnesses who will be testifying at a Feb. 26 hearing on data privacy and security titled "Protecting Consumer Privacy in the Era of Big Data." Those witnesses are Brandi Collins, senior campaign director, Media, Democracy & Economic ...

Grimaldi, Layton among lineup

The House Consumer Protection Subcommittee has identified the witnesses who will be testifying at a Feb. 26 hearing on data privacy and security titled "Protecting Consumer Privacy in the Era of Big Data."

Those witnesses are Brandi Collins, senior campaign director, Media, Democracy & Economic Justice, Color of Change; Dave Grimaldi, executive VP for public policy, IAB; Roslyn Layton, PhD, visiting scholar, American Enterprise Institute; Nuala O’Connor, president, Center for Democracy & Technology; and Denise Zheng, VP, technology and innovation, Business Roundtable.

In a YouTube video on the hearing, Subcommittee Chair Jan Schakowsky (D-Ill.) said that while she knew her audience "loved their devices" she was also sure they wondered what the data companies "are beginning to sweep up" about them. She also talked about breaches and "problem after problem" involving Facebook.

She said the hearing was the beginning of a conversation that would end in legislation, adding that self-regulation "just isn't working."

Author: John Eggerton
Posted: February 22, 2019, 10:07 pm
Sens. Ed Markey (D-Mass.) and Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) were not happy with Facebook's answers about children's in-app purchases and urged the FTC to review a complaint filed Friday about the issue. The senators had sent Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg a letter citing evidence the company had ...

Say answers to questions on in-app 'friendly fraud' were unacceptable

Sens. Ed Markey (D-Mass.) and Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) were not happy with Facebook's answers about children's in-app purchases and urged the FTC to review a complaint filed Friday about the issue.

Sen. Ed Markey

The senators had sent Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg a letter citing evidence the company had knowingly manipulated children into spending their parents' money while playing games on Facebook.

Kevin Martin, VP, U.S. public policy, for Facebook (and former Republican FCC Chairman) responded, saying that Facebook does not engage in "friendly fraud."

The Senators had a couple of asks that Facebook was not willing to accommodate, including making all child-and youth-directed content ad-free—Facebook says the ads are necessary to keep the content free—and committing to refund money spent by children on in-app purchases—Facebook said it would refund for fraud and would consider refunding money to parents for in-game purchases by their kids, in the latter case something Martin said it "frequently" provides, but gave no guarantee.

Related: Hill Dems Hammer Facebook over Alleged Openness of Closed Groups

Sen. Richard Blumenthal

The Senators had also asked when Zuckerberg became aware that kids were likely unknowingly spending their parents money on in-game purchases. Martin responded instead with an explanation that the site advised that payments could only be made if a parent or guardian were involved, and that if a parent had linked a credit card to an account (or a child had used it without permission), they would get the payment notification and statement.

“Facebook’s answers to our reasonable questions were inadequate and do not inspire trust," Sens. Markey and Blumenthal said in a joint statement. "Facebook failed to explain why it did not act on widespread complaints of fraud until a court finally stepped in.

"It is clear that Facebook did not step in when it became aware that developers were encouraging children to make unauthorized credit card purchases, even when those games targeted children. We did not even receive an explicit answer to our question about when Mark Zuckerberg became aware of Facebook’s friendly fraud problem. Facebook’s claim that it had in place robust policies to ‘make clear’ to users that they were spending real money is completely inconsistent with what users report.

"Teens were racking up thousands of dollars of charges. This was not a rare issue – almost ten percent of the money spent by young users playing games was later disputed by parents. The company was unwilling to commit to a reasonable request to keeping youth-directed content free and without advertisements."

"We urge the FTC to review in detail the complaint [one was filed by the Campaign for a Commercial Free Childhood and others, according to one of the groups that signed on] that was filed today on this issue. It shouldn’t take another settlement for Facebook to meet its ethical obligation to protect kids and families on its platform. Children are not ‘whales.'”

Author: John Eggerton
Posted: February 22, 2019, 9:51 pm
SAN JOSE, Calif. — Feb. 22, 2019 — Harmonic (NASDAQ: HLIT) today announced that LMT, the leading mobile telecommunications operator in Latvia and the first in the world to introduce Smart TV delivery over a mobile network, has deployed Harmonic's EyeQ™ content-aware encoding solution for its live ...

Harmonic (NASDAQ: HLIT) today announced that LMT, the leading mobile telecommunications operator in Latvia and the first in the world to introduce Smart TV delivery over a mobile network, has deployed Harmonic's EyeQ™ content-aware encoding solution for its live OTT service, delivered to TVs via 4G set-top boxes. Using Harmonic's award-winning EyeQ technology, LMT can deliver a consistent, superior video experience for live channels to TVs, with up to a 40 percent reduction in bandwidth and without having to perform a massive infrastructure upgrade. Harmonic's reseller Hannu Pro ensured a smooth deployment at every stage of the project.

SAN JOSE, Calif. — Feb. 22, 2019 — Harmonic (NASDAQ: HLIT) today announced that LMT, the leading mobile telecommunications operator in Latvia and the first in the world to introduce Smart TV delivery over a mobile network, has deployed Harmonic's EyeQ™ content-aware encoding solution for its live OTT service, delivered to TVs via 4G set-top boxes. Using Harmonic's award-winning EyeQ technology, LMT can deliver a consistent, superior video experience for live channels to TVs, with up to a 40 percent reduction in bandwidth and without having to perform a massive infrastructure upgrade. Harmonic's reseller Hannu Pro ensured a smooth deployment at every stage of the project.

"Live events, which can incur a significant peak in viewers especially for TV applications, put considerable stress on our mobile network," said Edgars Gončars, head of TV at LMT. "Harmonic's EyeQ solution allows us to offer the best video experience to subscribers while reducing the amount of bandwidth we need and lowering our delivery costs, while increasing the quality of experience. With EyeQ, we have the ability to scale up during popular live events and deliver pristine video quality, which is a critical factor for our continued business growth."

EyeQ encoding ensures that LMT's subscribers can watch exceptional HD video quality on 4G-enabled TVs — even when networks are constrained. At the heart of Harmonic's Electra® video processing system, the EyeQ solution provides LMT with significant opex and capex savings, reducing video traffic by up to 40 percent. With the capability to be deployed within any ecosystem, including appliances, virtual machines, cloud and SaaS, EyeQ content-aware encoding is a flexible choice for OTT service providers like LMT.

"LMT has one of the most efficient mobile networks and high-quality OTT offerings on the market, and that's in part thanks to its forward-thinking technology strategy," said Ian Graham, senior vice president of international sales and video services at Harmonic. "Since LMT's OTT service is sent to TVs, the operator needed a high-quality delivery solution that could scale. Our EyeQ solution will ensure that LMT's subscribers never miss a moment of exciting content due to bandwidth limitation or video-quality issues."

Further information about Harmonic and the company's solutions is available at www.harmonicinc.com.

# # #

About Harmonic

Harmonic (NASDAQ: HLIT), the worldwide leader in video delivery technology and services, enables media companies and service providers to deliver ultra-high-quality broadcast and OTT video services to consumers globally. The company has also revolutionized cable access networking via the industry's first virtualized cable access solution, enabling cable operators to more flexibly deploy gigabit internet service to consumers' homes and mobile devices. Whether simplifying OTT video delivery via innovative cloud and SaaS technologies, or powering the delivery of gigabit internet cable services, Harmonic is changing the way media companies and service providers monetize live and VOD content on every screen. More information is available at www.harmonicinc.com.

This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. Statements concerning Harmonic's business and the anticipated capabilities, advantages, reliability, efficiency, market acceptance, market growth, specifications and benefits of Harmonic products, services and technology are forward-looking statements. These statements are based on our current expectations and beliefs and are subject to risks and uncertainties, including the risks and uncertainties more fully described in Harmonic's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including its Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended Dec. 31, 2017, its Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q and its Current Reports on Form 8-K. The forward-looking statements in this press release are based on information available to Harmonic as of the date hereof, and Harmonic disclaims any obligation to update any forward-looking statements.

Harmonic, the Harmonic logo and other Harmonic marks are owned by Harmonic Inc. or its affiliates. All other trademarks referenced herein are the property of their respective owners.

Link to Word Doc: www.202comms.com/Harmonic/190222Harmonic.docx

Photo Link: www.202comms.com/Harmonic/Harmonic-EyeQ.jpg

Photo Caption: Harmonic EyeQ™ Content-Aware Encoding Solution

Share it on Twitter: https://twitter.com/intent/tweet?text=LMT%20Picks%20@HarmonicInc%20to%20Improve%20%234G%20Bandwidth%20Efficiency%20for%20its%20Live%20%23OTT%20Service%20-%20http://bit.ly/2Njap8c

Author: Dundee Hills Group
Posted: February 22, 2019, 8:22 pm
The executive producers of Fox's Empire have scrubbed Jussie Smollett's character Jamal from the final two episodes of the show's season, Fox announced Friday. Smollett was arrested by the Chicago Police Department Thursday on felony charges for disorderly conduct in filing a false police report. ...

Smollett has been charged with disorderly conduct in filing a false police report

The executive producers of Fox's Empire have scrubbed Jussie Smollett's character Jamal from the final two episodes of the show's season, Fox announced Friday.

Jussie Smollett as "Jamal" on Fox's "Empire"

Smollett was arrested by the Chicago Police Department Thursday on felony charges for disorderly conduct in filing a false police report.

The actor and singer filed a police report Jan. 29 that alleged he was beaten by two men in Chicago. The Chicago Police Department has said that Smollett staged the attack because he was unhappy with his salary on the show.

“The events of the past few weeks have been incredibly emotional for all of us," said Empire executive producers Lee Daniels, Danny Strong, Brett Mahoney, Brian Grazer, Sanaa Hamri, Francie Calfo and Dennis Hammer in a statement. "Jussie has been an important member of our Empire family for the past five years and we care about him deeply. While these allegations are very disturbing, we are placing our trust in the legal system as the process plays out. We are also aware of the effects of this process on the cast and crew members who work on our show and to avoid further disruption on set, we have decided to remove the role of ‘Jamal’ from the final two episodes of the season."

Smollett has maintained that he is not guilty of the charges.

"Mr. Smollett is a young man of impeccable character and integrity who fiercely and solemnly maintains his innocence and feels betrayed by a system that apparently wants to skip due process and proceed directly to sentencing,” his legal team said in a statement released Thursday.

Author: Jessika Walsten
Posted: February 22, 2019, 7:50 pm
The American Masters documentary Charley Pride: I’m Just Me, about Pride growing up a sharecropper’s son in Mississippi before making it as a trail-blazing country music superstar, airs on PBS Feb. 22. Barbara Hall directed, and Michael Kantor is the executive producer on behalf of American ...

‘American Masters’ checks in with Pride, Joseph Pulitzer, Terrence McNally

The American Masters documentary Charley Pride: I’m Just Me, about Pride growing up a sharecropper’s son in Mississippi before making it as a trail-blazing country music superstar, airs on PBS Feb. 22. Barbara Hall directed, and Michael Kantor is the executive producer on behalf of American Masters.

Before his music career kicked in, Pride also had a run as a baseball player in the Negro leagues. The film includes interviews with Garth Brooks, Dolly Parton, Brad Paisley, Darius Rucker, Willie Nelson and Marty Stuart.

“At a time when African-American singers were more notable for R&B hits, Charley Pride followed his passion for country music, overcoming obstacles through determination and raw talent to make a lasting impact on the genre and create a legacy that continues today,” said Kantor. “We are honored to share the inspiring, and largely untold, story of this barrier-breaking performer with viewers nationwide.”

I’m Just Me and Sammy Davis, Jr.: I’ve Gotta Be Me, which premiered Feb. 19, are the American Masters projects tied to Black History Month.

Coming up for American Masters this year are the documentaries Holly Near: Singing for Our Lives, about the singer-songwriter, out March 1; Joseph Pulitzer: Voice of the People, about the famed newspaper publisher, April 12; Garry Winogrand: All Things Are Photographable, about the photographer, April 19; and Terrence McNally: Every Act of Live, about the playwright and screenwriter, June 14.

Robert Shaw — Man of Many Voices, about the actor, rolls in summer or fall, and N. Scott Momaday: Words From a Bear, about the Native American author, premieres in the fall. 

Author: Michael Malone
Posted: February 22, 2019, 7:40 pm
CBS has ordered two additional seasons of comedy Young Sheldon. Chuck Lorre and Steven Molaro created Young Sheldon, a spinoff of The Big Bang Theory. The show debuted in September 2017. “Thanks to Chuck Lorre’s and Steve Molaro’s outstanding creative leadership, Young Sheldon has been a powerful ...

Two more seasons coming for sophomore spinoff

CBS has ordered two additional seasons of comedy Young Sheldon. Chuck Lorre and Steven Molaro created Young Sheldon, a spinoff of The Big Bang Theory.

The show debuted in September 2017.

“Thanks to Chuck Lorre’s and Steve Molaro’s outstanding creative leadership, Young Sheldon has been a powerful performer for the network with an audience that towers over most of the television landscape,” said Kelly Kahl, president, CBS Entertainment.

Related: CBS Renews Comedy ‘Mom’ for Two More Seasons

The series averages over 14.5 million viewers. It stars Iain Armitage, Zoe Perry, Lance Barber, Montana Jordan, Raegan Revord and Annie Potts.

“The Coopers are portrayed by an amazing cast, and we are looking forward to having the gifted writing staff mine even more of Sheldon’s hilarious backstory and the warm family dynamic that has made this comedy a favorite with audiences for the past two seasons,” said Thom Sherman, senior executive VP of programming.

Lorre, Molaro, Jim Parsons and Todd Spiewak are the executive producers for Chuck Lorre Productions, Inc. in association with Warner Bros. Television.

Author: Michael Malone
Posted: February 22, 2019, 7:17 pm
Driven by the rapid growth of its advertising supported video platform, Roku reported a 46% rise in fourth quarter revenue to $275.7 million, beating analyst forecasts. Capping a 2018 during which the Silicon Valley OTT company saw its stock price grow to $76.48 in October, before nadiring out at ...

Did tour de force Q4 earnings report convince Wall Street that OTT company isn't so 'uninvestable' after all?

Driven by the rapid growth of its advertising supported video platform, Roku reported a 46% rise in fourth quarter revenue to $275.7 million, beating analyst forecasts.

Capping a 2018 during which the Silicon Valley OTT company saw its stock price grow to $76.48 in October, before nadiring out at $27.17 in December, Roku finished up with a 45% rise in total revenue to $742.5 million.

As of mid-day NASDAQ trading on Friday, Roku shares are up more than 20% since its Thursday earnings report to nearly $63 a share.

Now, the question is, is Roku’s stock up there to stay?

Truly, it has been a wild ride for the company, which last year began selling more advertising on its platform than it did OTT gadgets, which put the company in business way back in the early 2000s.

Related: Roku Reports 27M Active Accounts, Sends Stock Up Over 25%

Platform revenue increased 85% year over year for Roku in 2018, reaching $416.9 million, which accounted for more than 56% of total revenue. In the fourth quarter, platform revenue reached an all time high for the company, $151.4 million, a whopping 77% year over year increase.

This is being driven by rapid growth of the Roku user and engagement. Roku added 7.8 million active accounts in 2018, reaching 27.1 million at year end. Total hours spent streaming on the platform increased by 9.2 billion to 24 billion. Average revenue per user (ARPU) increased by $4.17 to $17.95.

Roku’s gross profit was up 66% for the year to $332.1 million.

Beyond being the market leader in OTT devices that you hook up to your TV’s HDMI port, the Roku operating system drives one in four smart TVs.

During Thursday’s earnings call, CEO Anthony Wood even discussed international expansion plans.

“We believe many of the assets we built for the U.S. market will help us expand into other markets. And clearly streaming is a global opportunity with one billion households worldwide. And that put us more International than domestic subs,” Wood told investors.

With ad-supported Roku Channel driving so much growth and expansion potential, how did the stock fall so far?

Concerns about tariffs on Chinese electronics factored into the company’s steep slide from October through early January. But more than that, it was concern that much larger technology companies like Apple would swoop in very quickly vanquish Roku in key markets like smart TVs.

As CES got underway in early January, for example, Citron Research labeled Roku “uninvestable” after Apple signed a deal to enable Samsung smart TVs to access the iTunes store.

Then again, Apple TV has competed in the OTT device market for a decade alongside Roku, and the latter has managed to carve out the leadership position. 

Author: Daniel Frankel
Posted: February 22, 2019, 7:10 pm
Top Republicans on the House Energy & Commerce Committee agreed with FCC Chairman Ajit Pai that the FCC's latest (Sec. 706) broadband deployment report shows "significant progress" in closing the digital divide. The chairman released a draft of the report for the commissioners' perusal this ...

Say dereg has driven gains in closing digital divide

Top Republicans on the House Energy & Commerce Committee agreed with FCC Chairman Ajit Pai that the FCC's latest (Sec. 706) broadband deployment report shows "significant progress" in closing the digital divide.

The chairman released a draft of the report for the commissioners' perusal this week. It concludes that advanced telecommunications services—defined as broadband—are being deployed on a "reasonable and timely basis."

The report is mandated by Congress and if the FCC does not conclude deployment is reasonable and timely it can regulate to make it so.

Reports under recent Democratic chairs reached the opposite conclusion based on the statutory language, which includes "all Americans," concluding deployment could not fit that definition until high-speed broadband's reach—wireless is not yet a substitute—was 100%.

Related: FCC Says Digital Divide Has Substantially Narrowed

But that was not the conclusion of Rep. Greg Walden (R-Ore.), ranking member of the House Energy & Commerce Committee, and Rep. Bob Latta (R-Ohio), ranking member of the Communications Subcommittee, who saw Pai's deregulatory moves behind that progress, though Walden also put in a plug for Republican net neutrality bills.

But they also signaled more needs to be done.

“This report shows that the FCC’s efforts to reduce regulatory burdens are helping more Americans gain access to broadband and bringing us closer to finally closing the digital divide,” Walden said. “But despite these breakthroughs, there is still more work to be done — and that’s why Republicans want to find a bipartisan solution for net neutrality. We need open internet certainty without the excessive and unrelated burdens of Title II.”

“Closing the ‘digital divide’ is one of my top priorities as Republican Leader on the Communications and Technology Subcommittee, and this report shows that efforts to reduce regulatory burdens and support investment are helping more Americans gain access to high-speed broadband,” said Latta. “Representing a number of rural areas in Congress, I know the difference that this will make in family homes and for businesses on Main Street in these communities. At the same time, there’s still more work to be done at the FCC and in Congress to make access to high-speed internet a reality for all Americans.”

Author: John Eggerton
Posted: February 22, 2019, 5:44 pm
Victor Green must have known, for it was his illustrated Green Book that gave African Americans who wanted to travel in pre-civil rights America a sense of power fused with freedom. His book reflected two different realities—the creeping, quiet menace that faced African Americans traveling across ...

Victor Green must have known, for it was his illustrated Green Book that gave African Americans who wanted to travel in pre-civil rights America a sense of power fused with freedom.

His book reflected two different realities—the creeping, quiet menace that faced African Americans traveling across the nation in the 1940s, 50s, and 60s as well as the resilience and determination of these people.

Smithsonian Channel has documented the book’s vast impact with the hour-long documentary The Green Book: Guide to Freedom. The documentary, like the book itself, showcases the pride, practicalities, determinations and fear that were a reality for African Americans traveling in pre-civil rights America. It also highlights the fortitude of a bonded community that would not be denied its right to travel the open road.

“Telling us the story of this book … allows us to see a parallel country where people lived and thrived and created and grew opportunities of appreciation for themselves and their community.” — Marquette Folley, Smithsonian project director

“From the beginning, we wanted the film to illuminate the significant challenges of African American travel in our country’s history, as well as the victories achieved by the African American community in the face of adversity,” said Linda Goldman, executive producer for Smithsonian Channel’s Mission Critical programming. “The dangers and horrors of racism were very real. And so were the resilience and ingenuity of African American businesses and communities that the Green Book served.”

As the documentary opens, it feels easy to relate to the young girl who grins with excitement in the car, ready to see something new on the road. You then see her father, outside talking to a white man, carefully determining if it was safe for his family to get out.

Honoring the Female Voice through the Green Book

By Susan Ashworth

Many of the successful businesses that were published in the Green Book have something key in common. They were owned and managed by women: cafes, catering businesses, beauty parlors, restaurants, hotels, and more.

“At Smithsonian Channel we always seek to expand representation in our films. In this case, we were excited to discover how many Green Book businesses were owned by women,” says Linda Goldman, executive producer for the Smithsonian Channel’s Mission Critical programming.

One feeling that resonates clearly after watching the new documentary The Green Book: A Guide to Freedom is the undercurrent of connectivity that exists in African American communities. And the documentary expresses that most clearly when it incorporates voices from women.

The multidimensional stories—often told from the perspectives of women who lived through the area of the Green Book—are enriched by documentary director Yoruba Richen’s intimate directing style.

In honor of Women’s History Month, the documentary will be shown in 18 markets across the nation. “As one character says: ‘Successful businesses have been owned by women forever. But you can forget that if you don’t have evidence. The Green Book gives you evidence,’” Goldman says. 

Victor Green knew this reality well. A black postal carrier from Harlem, Green saw African Americans being turned away from certain businesses in his own neighborhood. The Green Book was first published in 1936, and at its height the pamphlet listed more than 9,500 locations — it had become more than a just a travel guide, it had become a roadmap to some of the most significant people, successful businesses and most important political milestones of the 20 century.

The documentary goes behind the scenes to investigate the secrets and stories behind many of the places listed in the Green Book. Take the Idlewild resort, known as the “Black Eden of Michigan,” that served as one of the first places African Americans could vacation and buy property without fear of being discriminated against. “We were free to bike, free to swim, free to just visit with each other, and have a wonderful time,” said Marilyn S. Taylor, a longtime resident of the community.

Yet today, only a third of those locations remain. “We need to find those places, and we need to see them, and we need to revere what they meant,” said Dr. Henrie Monteith Treadwell. “It’s important for everyone in this nation to examine the significance of the Green Book. Because it made all of the difference to our survival.”

The Green Book: Guide to Freedom

It’s clear that the Green Book’s legacy continues. The guide is being discovered by young entrepreneurs who are purchasing unused properties found in the Green Book guide and bringing them back to life. The New York City Council recently voted to designate the Harlem YMCA has a landmark due to its cultural significance to the African American community, while President Barack Obama named the A.G. Gaston Motel — which served as a vital meeting place for Martin Luther King Jr. during the civil rights era — as a National Historic Monument in 2017.

“Telling the story of this book … allows us to see a parallel country where people lived and thrived and created and grew opportunities of appreciation for themselves and their community,” said Marquette Folley, Project Director for the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service.

According to Goldman, the story of the Green Book is compelling because it is quintessentially American, encompassing both the tragic sin of racism and the promise of freedom and opportunity. “America is a place where the Green Book was necessary — and at the same time a place where a postal worker with a vision could build a travel empire, planting the seeds for thriving businesses and communities across the nation.”

Ours is not only a narrative of oppression but is also a narrative of joy and beauty that has always been part of our history even though it hasn't been told.” — Director Yoruba Richen

The stories told by the Green Book are as relevant today as they were 50 years ago. Smithsonian Channel’s The Green Book: Guide to Freedom will lead the network’s fifth annual Black History Month Screening tour in partnership with Comcast, Charter and Altice in 18 markets nationwide for a total of 19 screenings. Smithsonian Channel also expanded its partnership this year to include employee screenings at Google and Hulu in an effort to reach key market demographics.

“We believe the story told in The Green Book: Guide to Freedom is universal and essential to understanding our country’s history, encompassing stories that pay tribute to both horrors and triumphs,” Goldman said. “We’re so excited to partner with Google and Hulu for the first time on the tour this year, giving their tastemaking staffs an early look at a documentary that we are so proud of.”

Another power that clearly resonates after watching the film: the undercurrent of connectivity that exits in African American communities.

“One of the most beautiful discoveries about making this film was the community that the Green Book created,” said director Yoruba Richen. “Everyone talked about it during the interviews, and it was definitely something that we tried to show in the film both thematically and geographically.”

What really moved Richen is how, despite the danger that existed for African Americans, the community created their own spaces for leisure and pleasure. “And we always have,” she said. “Ours is not only a narrative of oppression but is also a narrative of joy and beauty that has always been part of our history even though it hasn't been told.”

Many moments in the film — both negative and positive — still feel relevant today, said Goldman. “Racism continues to manifest in different ways across the country. And so does resilience, ingenuity, and determination.”

“The Green Book: Guide to Freedom” premieres Monday Feb. 25 at 8 pm ET/PT on Smithsonian Channel and will be available for early sampling on distributors’ VOD and TVE platforms beginning Feb. 18.

Author: Susan Ashworth
Posted: February 22, 2019, 5:38 pm
CBS earned top spot in Thursday ratings, with comedy Mom leading to a 1.3 in viewers 18-49, per the Nielsen overnights, and a 6 share. In second was ABC at 1.1/5. Univision did a massive number, as the live awards show Premio Lo Nuestro 2019 led to a 1.0/4. The Big Bang Theory fell 12% to 2.3 on ...

Big gain for ‘Grey’s’ on ABC

CBS earned top spot in Thursday ratings, with comedy Mom leading to a 1.3 in viewers 18-49, per the Nielsen overnights, and a 6 share. In second was ABC at 1.1/5.

Univision did a massive number, as the live awards show Premio Lo Nuestro 2019 led to a 1.0/4.

The Big Bang Theory fell 12% to 2.3 on CBS and Young Sheldon dropped 10% to 1.8. Mom gained 18% to 1.3 and Fam went up 13% to 0.9, before SWAT fell 11% to 0.8.

ABC had Grey’s Anatomy up 21% to 1.7 and A Million Little Things up 10% to 1.1, then How to Get Away With Murder dropped 17% to 0.5.

NBC got a 0.9/4. The Titan Games did a 1.1 and Brooklyn Nine-Nine a 0.8, then Will & Grace a 0.7. All three were flat. Law & Order: SVU went north 13% to 0.9.

Fox rated a 0.7/3. Gotham got a 0.6 and The Orville a 0.7, both shows flat.

Telemundo did a 0.4/2.

The CW scored a 0.2/1. A Charmed repeat led into Legacies, which was down 50% to 0.2.

Author: Michael Malone
Posted: February 22, 2019, 5:16 pm
WASHINGTON, D.C. – NAB Show, in association with Streaming Summit Conference Chairman Dan Rayburn, will again produce the two-day event with a focus on the OTT video industry. The Streaming Summit will take place April 8-9 in the North Hall of the Las Vegas Convention Center. A new dedicated ...

WASHINGTON, D.C. – NAB Show, in association with Streaming Summit Conference Chairman Dan Rayburn, will again produce the two-day event with a focus on the OTT video industry.

WASHINGTON, D.C. – NAB Show, in association with Streaming Summit Conference Chairman Dan Rayburn, will again produce the two-day event with a focus on the OTT video industry. The Streaming Summit will take place April 8-9 in the North Hall of the Las Vegas Convention Center. A new dedicated website has been launched at nabstreamingsummit.com and includes details on the call for speakers submission process.

The event will feature nearly 100 speakers across two tracks. Technical topics to be addressed include the transcoding, packaging, monetization and playback of live and on-demand video, including how to deliver the best viewing experience. Attendees will also learn how to capitalize on direct-to-consumer offerings and how some of the largest companies in the world are monetizing their video libraries via advertising, subscription and other monetization strategies.

“The Streaming Summit is a critical component in NAB Show’s continued focus on the business, technology and content powering the phenomenal growth of OTT video and streaming,” said NAB Executive Vice President of Conventions and Business Operations Chris Brown. ”This one-of-a-kind summit is an opportunity for attendees to hear from key influencers in the business.”

The Streaming Summit will also feature nearly a dozen fireside chats with key executives in the online video market, including Amazon, Google, Facebook, Comcast, Hulu and many other leading OTT platforms.

Program details are available at nabstreamingsummit.com, and speaking proposals are now being accepted. For inquiries, please contact Dan Rayburn at (917) 523-4562 or emaildan@danrayburn.com.

About NAB Show

NAB Show, held April 6 - 11, 2019, in Las Vegas, NV, USA, is the world's largest and most comprehensive convention encompassing the convergence of media, entertainment and technology. With nearly 100,000 attendees from 165 countries and 1,700+ exhibitors, NAB Show is the ultimate marketplace for solutions that transcend traditional broadcasting and fuel the digital storytelling economy. From creation to consumption, across multiple platforms and countless nationalities, NAB Show is where global visionaries convene to bring content to life in new and exciting ways. For complete details, visit www.nabshow.com.

About NAB

The National Association of Broadcasters is the premier advocacy association for America's broadcasters. NAB advances radio and television interests in legislative, regulatory and public affairs. Through advocacy, education and innovation, NAB enables broadcasters to best serve their communities, strengthen their businesses and seize new opportunities in the digital age. Learn more at www.nab.org.

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Author: B&C Staff
Posted: February 22, 2019, 4:37 pm
Westwood, Massachusetts, February 21st, 2019 –– Telestream, a leading provider of workflow automation, processing and quality monitoring and management solutions for the production and distribution of video, has announced the appointment of Osman Salah as Regional Sales Manager, serving the Middle ...

Westwood, Massachusetts, February 21st, 2019 –– Telestream, a leading provider of workflow automation, processing and quality monitoring and management solutions for the production and distribution of video, has announced the appointment of Osman Salah as Regional Sales Manager, serving the Middle East, Africa and Turkey region. 

Based in Dubai, UAE, Salah brings a wealth of local market experience, commercial expertise and technical knowledge to Telestream’s MENA team. During a 13-year career in the media & broadcast industry, Osman Salah has worked for a number of industry leading vendors: most recently, he worked as Regional Sales Manager for Imagine Communications.

The last 12 months have seen Telestream investing in its global sales and business development team in the EMEA & APAC regions. Salah’s appointment will support these growth initiatives in the Middle East, Africa and Turkey. “Osman is a strong addition to our team in the MENA region,” commented Alistair Butler, Chief Sales Officer at Telestream. “With his local market experience, commercial expertise and specialist technical knowledge he will make a positive contribution to our dynamic team.”

This appointment is another indicator of the investment Telestream is making to facilitate international market growth. Later this year, at NAB, the company will introduce significant new cloud-based and virtualized system solutions for intelligent media processing, distribution and delivery. Through its new solutions, along with driving video monitoring, OTT and social media solutions, Telestream’s MENA sales are set to grow, especially with an increasing regional focus on 4K content.

“This year will see a springboard for Telestream with some of the most strategically important new product introductions in our 20-year history,” continued Butler. “Having Osman in place means that MENA customers will have access to all these new and radically different products and system solutions as soon as they hit the market.”

Author: kristi@highrezpr.com
Posted: February 22, 2019, 2:34 pm
March 2019 Acorn TV Calendar Monday, March 4th ACCUSED, Series 1-2 (BBC One Drama Series) International Emmy-winner for Best Drama Series and two-time Best Performance by an Actor (Sean Bean and Christopher Eccleston Murder, arson, and other deadly offenses all have a flash point, when a person ...

March 2019 Acorn TV Calendar

Monday, March 4th

ACCUSED, Series 1-2 (BBC One Drama Series)

International Emmy-winner for Best Drama Series and two-time Best Performance by an Actor (Sean Bean and Christopher Eccleston

Murder, arson, and other deadly offenses all have a flash point, when a person loses control over something, or someone, in their life. This star-studded, acclaimed anthology series turns the classic crime drama on its head and takes a compelling look at the true nature of guilt and innocence. Each episode follows a different character and reveals the crime through the eyes of the perpetrator, revealing how—and more importantly, why—it happened. Some characters are guilty, some are innocent, and others fall somewhere in between. But they’re all ordinary people whose lives have quickly gone sideways—and they all stand accused. Series 1 and 2 stars Christopher Eccleston (Doctor Who), Mackenzie Crook (Detectorists), Peter Capaldi (Doctor Who), Andy Serkis (Black Panther, Lord of the Rings trilogy), Olivia Colman (The Favourite, The Crown), Stephen Graham (Line of Duty, Boardwalk Empire), and Sean Bean (Game of Thrones, The Lord of the Rings). Each hour-long episode is a separate story about how one ordinary individual ended up in the dock to face his or her fate. Written by Jimmy McGovern (Cracker) (10 EPS, 2010-2012)

THE BOY WITH THE TOPKNOT (Streaming Exclusive)

Trailer

Based on the critically acclaimed memoir The Boy with the Topknot by journalist Sathnam Sanghera and starring Sacha Dhawan (Iron Fist, Mr Selfridge). Born to traditional Punjabi parents and growing up in Wolverhampton, Sathnam moves to London after graduating from Cambridge University. Living with his English girlfriend in London and excelling in his career as a columnist for The Times, he keeps his life very separate to the one he has in Wolverhampton with his family. This is a touching, humorous and emotional story of a second-generation Indian growing up in Britain and how he juggles his family, love life and career. (Feature-length, 2017)

MY WELSH SHEEP DOG (Documentary)

BBC documentary with Kate Humble setting out to learn more about the endangered Welsh sheepdog breed. (3 EPS, 2016)

MURDOCH MYSTERIES, Season 12, Ep 12/18 (Exclusive U.S. Premiere)

“If you haven’t seen it, you must.”Globe & Mail

Trailer

A new season 12 episode from one of Acorn TV’s and Canada’s most popular series. Garnering an amazing 45 Gemini® and Canadian Screen Award nominations, Murdoch Mysteries has found a huge audience in North America for its period charm, entertaining mysteries, and likeable characters. Set in Toronto in the late 1890s and early 1900s during the age of invention, the mystery series centers on Detective William Murdoch, a methodical and dashing detective, who enlists radical new forensic techniques to solve some of the city’s murders.

Monday, March 11th

MANHUNT (Acorn TV Original, Exclusive U.S., Canada and Mexico Premiere)

“Martin Clunes is a revelation… Compelling” -The Telegraph

Trailer

Earning the highest ratings for a new ITV drama in more than six years (since Broadchurch) and 9 million UK viewers, new British crime drama MANHUNT stars Martin Clunes (Doc Martin) as former London Metropolitan police detective DCI Colin Sutton who determinedly and tenaciously pursued serial killer Levi Bellfield. Written by Ed Whitmore (Silent Witness, Strike Back) and directed by Marc Evans (Trauma, Safe House, Hinterland), Manhunt is the real-life story of how the murder of French National, Amelie Delagrange, on Twickenham Green in August 2004 was eventually linked to two other murders. With no forensics, motive or witnesses, DCI Sutton’s painstaking approach and the diligence of his fellow officers gradually led to breakthroughs in the case and to suspected serial killer Levi Bellfield. But now the hunt is on for enough evidence to arrest him and make sure he’s found guilty at trial. (3 EPS)

HENRY IX: The Lost King (Documentary)

Trailer

BBC Scotland Documentary. In this immersive documentary, Paul Murton takes us on a journey to investigate the mysterious disappearance from history of a forgotten prince - Henry Fredrick Stuart. Born in Stirling Castle in 1594, he was the eldest son and heir of King James the VI and I of the United Kingdom. From an early age, the young prince was hidden away by the King for security reasons; but later, after he joined his father in England as the first Scottish Prince of Wales, Henry became a mesmerising star of the first decade of the Stuart dynasty’s rule over the tumultuous 1600’s. Paul begins his quest in Stirling Castle and meets historian and author, Sarah Fraser, who helps to uncover Henry’s early life, as well as learning about how the lost prince’s legacy changed history when the British Empire took its first steps into North America, under Henry’s patronage. This detective story reveals the tragedy of Henry’s lost potential, as this forgotten figure is brought from the shadows of history into the light of the modern world and how ultimately, his brother, Charles I ended up as King. (3 EPS)

MURDOCH MYSTERIES, Season 12, Ep 13/18 (U.S. Premiere)

A new season 12 episode from one of Acorn TV’s and Canada’s most popular series. Garnering an amazing 45 Gemini® and Canadian Screen Award nominations, Murdoch Mysteries has found a huge audience in North America for its period charm, entertaining mysteries, and likeable characters. Set in Toronto in the late 1890s and early 1900s during the age of invention, the mystery series centers on Detective William Murdoch, a methodical and dashing detective, who enlists radical new forensic techniques to solve some of the city’s murders.

Monday, March 18th

THE TRUTH WILL OUT (Exclusive U.S. Premiere, Foreign Language)

New Swedish crime drama

Detective Peter Wendel’s goal of creating a new, super-group cold case team encounters a set-back when an unknown killer leaves a message for the police. It states that Sweden’s most notorious serial killer is actually a fraud. In order to uncover the truth, Peter has to pull his cold case group together quickly, limited to the misfits of the police force – the only officers currently available in Stockholm. His newly formed team find themselves at odds with the powerful group of people who got the serial killer convicted in the first place. (8 EPS)

THE CASE

BBC One legal drama following the trial of a man who admits assisting his partner to end her life, but vigorously denies murder. Did he act out of love, or take cruel advantage of a dying woman?

MURDOCH MYSTERIES, Season 12, Ep 14/18 (U.S. Premiere)

A new season 12 episode from one of Acorn TV’s and Canada’s most popular series. Garnering an amazing 45 Gemini® and Canadian Screen Award nominations, Murdoch Mysteries has found a huge audience in North America for its period charm, entertaining mysteries, and likeable characters. Set in Toronto in the late 1890s and early 1900s during the age of invention, the mystery series centers on Detective William Murdoch, a methodical and dashing detective, who enlists radical new forensic techniques to solve some of the city’s murders.

Monday, March 25th

SOUNDBREAKING: Stories from the Cutting Edge of Recorded Music

Groundbreaking Grammy®- and Emmy®-nominated music series

The art and evolution of music recording is one of the 20th century’s great untold stories. Executive Produced by legendary Beatles producer Sir George Martin, this eight-part series combines more than 150 original interviews with rare archival studio footage—and an extensive soundtrack featuring almost 300 songs—to explore the extraordinary impact of recorded music on our lives. Soundbreaking provides unprecedented access to some of the most celebrated artists, producers, and music industry pioneers of all time, including Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr, Elton John, Eric Clapton, Joni Mitchell, Dave Grohl, Debbie Harry, Steven Van Zandt, Chuck D, BB King, Brian Eno, Tom Petty, Roger Daltrey, Annie Lennox, Dave Stewart, Smokey Robinson, Quincy Jones, RZA, Roger Waters, St. Vincent, Rick Rubin, Bonnie Raitt, Questlove, and Beck. The series explores a century’s worth of innovation and experimentation, from the Beatles’ groundbreaking use of multitrack technology to the synthesized stylings of Stevie Wonder, from disco-era drum machines to the modern art of sampling. You’ll hear the songs you love in a whole new way. (2016, 8 EPS)

EXECUTIVE STRESS, Series 1-3

1980s British sitcom. Caroline Fairchild (Penelope Keith) returns to work as an Editorial Director for Oasis Publishing after spending the last 25 years raising her five children. Her husband, Donald Fairchild (Geoffrey Palmer then Peter Bowles) works for Gingsberg, also a publishing house. Oasis buys out Ginsberg and now Caroline and Donald are working for the same company. But, Oasis has a rule that doesn't allow married couples to work together. Since Caroline applied for the job under her maiden name Fielding, she decides not to quit her new job. Instead Donald and Caroline must pretend not to know one another in order for them to continue on with their careers. (19 EPS)

MURDOCH MYSTERIES, Season 12, Ep 15/18 (U.S. Premiere)

A new season 12 episode from one of Acorn TV’s and Canada’s most popular series. Garnering an amazing 45 Gemini® and Canadian Screen Award nominations, Murdoch Mysteries has found a huge audience in North America for its period charm, entertaining mysteries, and likeable characters. Set in Toronto in the late 1890s and early 1900s during the age of invention, the mystery series centers on Detective William Murdoch, a methodical and dashing detective, who enlists radical new forensic techniques to solve some of the city’s murders.

About Acorn TV: Called a “glorious streaming service… an essential must-have” (The Hollywood Reporter) and “Netflix for the Anglophile” (NPR), Acorn TV is North America’s largest streaming service specializing in British and international television from AMC Networks privately owned subsidiary RLJ Entertainment. Acorn TV adds exclusive new programs every week with a deep library of mysteries, dramas, and comedies with no set end dates or commercials. Subscribers can stream many of their favorite international series and discover new and classic programs previously unavailable to U.S. audiences. In 2019, Acorn TV features several commissioned series including British crime drama London Kills, fun British mystery Queens of Mystery and the final Series 2 movie of Agatha Raisin; new episodes of fan favorites Line of Duty from Jed Mercurio, British sensation Doc Martin, Welsh sensation Keeping Faith, medical drama The Good Karma Hospital, Paul Abbott’s No Offence, Aussie dramedy The Heart Guy, and Canadian hit Murdoch Mysteries; along with several new series, including British crime drama Manhunt, Lucy Lawless’s My Life is Murder, BBC One Wales family drama Pitching In, New Zealand crime drama Straight Forward and Dutch drama The Oldenheim Twelve; and a growing catalog of popular bingeable dramas A Place to Call Home, Blood, Mystery Road, Detectorists, Jack Irish, George Gently, and Foyle’s War; among much more. Acorn TV is available via Apple TV, Roku, iOS, Chromecast, Amazon Fire, Comcast/Xfinity, Android, among many other devices and offers a free trial and thereafter is just $4.99/month or $49.99/year. Facebook: OfficialAcornTV - Twitter @AcornTV

WATCH NOW: Premieres will be added as they become available. http://press.rlje.net/. Mirror to your TV via Apple TV or Chromecast. DVDs available upon request.

Acorn TV Press Contact: Chad Campbell, ccampbell@acorn.tv

Author: Acorn TV
Posted: February 22, 2019, 2:00 pm
Republican House Energy & Commerce Committee leaders are urging their Democratic counterparts to engage on three net neutrality bills the Republicans have offered up, describing them as a "menu of options to get started" on a "bipartisan solution." The Republicans, Energy & Commerce ...

Signal they are starting points, not end points, in clarifying FCC authority over 'net access

Republican House Energy & Commerce Committee leaders are urging their Democratic counterparts to engage on three net neutrality bills the Republicans have offered up, describing them as a "menu of options to get started" on a "bipartisan solution."

The Republicans, Energy & Commerce Committee ranking member Greg Walden (R-Ore.), Communications Subcommittee ranking member Bob Latta (R-Ohio) and Consumer Protection Subcommittee ranking member Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-Wash.) wrote E&C Committee Chairman Frank Pallone (D-N.J.) and Communications Subcommittee Chairman Mike Doyle (D-Pa.) to call for compromise rather than a "Title II or bust" approach by activist groups.

The three bills were introduced following a Feb. 7 net neutrality oversight hearing. None would classify internet access as a Title II common carrier telecommunications service, which many Dems still say is necessary.

The bills did not get any love from Dems, and net neutrality groups minced no words, saying they were at best woefully lacking and at worst fake efforts promoted by ISP lobbyist "shills."

The bills are the Open Internet Act of 2019, introduced by Rep. Bob Latta (R-Ohio), ranking member of the subcommittee, a revival of a bill from Rep. Greg Walden (R-Ore.), former chair of the full committee, based on a bill offered up in 2015 by Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.) (then chair of the House Energy & Commerce Committee) and Rep. Fred Upton (R-Mich.), (then chair of the Communications Subcommittee); and one from Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-Wash.) based on a Washington state net neutrality bill.

There now seems agreement on both sides for rules, enforced by the FCC, against blocking, throttling and anticompetive or consumer-unfriendly paid prioritization (which would leave room for public safety or health info prioritization). But that's where the twains no longer meet.

Walden conceded there were probably times when the Republicans should have accepted some offers, but the same went for the other side, he added, in talking up this latest legislative offer. He pointed out his bill is the same offer he made in 2015, which is to codify the FCC rules so they would not be subject to change by future commissions. That would mean no blocking, throttling or paid prioritization and ISP transparency about network practices. So, basically the 2015 Open Internet order but without Title II or the general conduct standard (see below). Walden said that offer had been on the table before that 2015 order was adopted.

He also said that bill was a starting point, and if they didn't like that, they could start with the Latta bill, which mirrors one offered up by then Democratic Energy & Commerce Committee chairman Henry Waxman in 2009, or Rodgers' bill.

Net neutrality activists, who generally argue that Title II is necessary to undergird such rules, were quick to dismiss the efforts as insufficient, including that codifying a small set of rules lacks the forward-looking aspect of the 2015 Open Internet Order's "general conduct standard," which gave the FCC the power to regulate conduct not falling under the rules but that impeded a free and open internet. The idea behind that standard was that the FCC could not anticipate all the kinds of conduct a rapidly changing and innovating tech platform could allow for.

Author: John Eggerton
Posted: February 22, 2019, 1:12 am
Rep. Bobby Rush (D-Ill.) who rushed to the defense of Empire actor Jessie Smollett after he was allegedly the target of a racist and homophobic attack, was as swift to condemn him after Chicago police arrested him and charged him with staging his own attack because he was dissatisfied with his ...

Had called for 'sweeping' FBI investigation after initial report of racist attack

Rep. Bobby Rush (D-Ill.) who rushed to the defense of Empire actor Jessie Smollett after he was allegedly the target of a racist and homophobic attack, was as swift to condemn him after Chicago police arrested him and charged him with staging his own attack because he was dissatisfied with his salary on the Fox show.

Jussie Smollett's booking photo

Rush had almost immediately called on FBI Director Christopher Wray to conduct a "sweeping" civil rights investigation and sought support for anti-lynching legislation—Smollett was found with a noose around his neck, though police say that was all part of the staged event.

“Like many Americans, I was shocked when I heard about the alleged attack on Jussie Smollett," Rush said Thursday (Feb. 21) after Smollett's claim unraveled.

“But, now we know that this reported attack was a total and complete lie. I am beyond disappointed and extremely infuriated at Smollett’s brazen, devious, and disgraceful behavior. I am outraged that he orchestrated an inflammatory story, which he knew would further divide this nation. He was aware that hate crimes are on the rise and — in an act of self-centered desperation and stupidity — he tried to inject himself into the center of a narrative that is rightfully focused on actual victims.

“I remain baffled that he would stoop to such a low level and he should be ashamed of himself for this selfish and immoral act. I commend the Chicago Police Department and their law enforcement partners for their relentless search for the truth and call on them to hold Smollett fully accountable for his disgusting, deplorable, and despicable actions.

“I hope that Smollett is aware that his stunt has made it harder for real victims to be believed and has caused them to relive their victimization, both from being attacked and from having their stories called into question. I hope Smollett is aware that his reprehensible behavior may make it harder for real victims to come forward and their journey for justice more difficult. But I hope they can find comfort in the outcome of this case and know that what’s done in the dark will come to light.”

Fox, which airs Empire, would only say it was considering its options regarding the actor.

“We understand the seriousness of this matter and we respect the legal process," 20th Century Fox Television and Fox Entertainment said in a statement. "We are evaluating the situation and we are considering our options.”

Smollett's legal team said that he "fiercely and solemnly maintains his innocence," according to various news outlets.

Author: John Eggerton
Posted: February 21, 2019, 11:17 pm
A Coast Guard officer being described as a domestic terrorist has been arrested and charged with "possession of a firearm and ammunition by an unlawful user or addict of controlled substances" and possession of a controlled substance (opioid). Those chareges are described as the "tip of the ...

U.S. attorneys allege Christopher Hasson compiled list of targets while surfing the CNN, MSNBC and Fox News websites

A Coast Guard officer being described as a domestic terrorist has been arrested and charged with "possession of a firearm and ammunition by an unlawful user or addict of controlled substances" and possession of a controlled substance (opioid). Those chareges are described as the "tip of the iceberg" in court documents that also outline threats the officer made to various Democratic politicians and journalists with CNN and MSNBC.

The Feds argue that the man is "bent on committing acts dangerous to human life that are intended to affect governmental conduct."

Alleged terrorist's gun cache

The defendant, Christopher Paul Hasson, was also a member of the Marines and Army National Guard. He has been working at the Coast Guard Headquarters in Washington as an acquisitions officer for the National Security Cutter Acquisition Program, according to a document filed in a Maryland U.S. District Court, in which the Feds say he should be denied bail.

The document cites a deleted email draft obtained from the defendant's computer in which he claims to be "dreaming of a way to kill almost every last person on the earth. I think a plague would be most successful but how do I acquire the needed/ Spanish flu, botulism, anthrax not sure yet but will find something."

On Jan. 17, 2019, Hasson, who had amassed a cache of weapons (see picture) allegedly compiled a "hit list" of targets for an attack, including MSNBC personality Chris Hayes and CNN's Don Lemon, Chris Cuomo and Van Jones, according to the attorneys. There is also a "Joey" in the spreadsheet list of targets that U.S. attorneys interpreted as MSNBC's Joe Scarborough.

The list was allegedly compiled while Hasson was surfing the CNN, MSNBC and Fox News websites, said the attorneys.

Author: John Eggerton
Posted: February 21, 2019, 10:51 pm
CRANBURY, N.J. — Feb. 21, 2019 — IHSE USA today introduced Draco compact ultra, a new, prepackaged KVM matrix solution for HDMI 2.0. Supporting configurations offered as 16 x 8 to 32 x 16, the Draco compact ultra enables lightning-fast switching of HDMI 2.0 computer video with embedded stereo audio ...

IHSE USA today introduced Draco compact ultra, a new, prepackaged KVM matrix solution for HDMI 2.0. Supporting configurations offered as 16 x 8 to 32 x 16, the Draco compact ultra enables lightning-fast switching of HDMI 2.0 computer video with embedded stereo audio and USB-HID for keyboard and mouse connections.

CRANBURY, N.J. — Feb. 21, 2019 — IHSE USA today introduced Draco compact ultra, a new, prepackaged KVM matrix solution for HDMI 2.0. Supporting configurations offered as 16 x 8 to 32 x 16, the Draco compact ultra enables lightning-fast switching of HDMI 2.0 computer video with embedded stereo audio and USB-HID for keyboard and mouse connections.

Draco compact ultra features IHSE's exclusive Flex-Port technology, saving systems installers tremendous time preconfiguring ports to specific I/O requirements. The new solution is ideal for command and control, broadcast and postproduction, energy management, air traffic control, simulation and visualization, and other advanced deployments in which video-rich applications are used.

"For 35 years, IHSE has been championing high-performance, future-proof KVM matrix systems — and now, we're breaking new barriers and simplifying system design by offering a prepackaged KVM matrix system for HDMI 2.0," said Dan Holland, marketing manager for IHSE USA. "The new Draco compact ultra exemplifies the latest advancements in next-generation digital AV distribution. With its small footprint and ruggedized chassis design, this matrix system is the perfect space-saving solution where centralized switching of KVM is needed."

Draco compact ultra is built on IHSE's proven Draco ultra series extender platform and utilizes the Fraunhofer Institute's Lightweight Image (Lici) codec, which ensures brilliant image quality and outstanding color accuracy at the highest video resolutions. Each Draco compact ultra matrix system includes a full set of transmitter and receiver modules supporting 4K resolutions and I/O connections up to 4096 x 2160 and 3840 x 2160 at a real 60-Hz refresh rate and full color depth (10 bit, 4:4:4). The solution extends computer signals from host systems to workstation areas over signal-mode fiber, delivering visually lossless output together with exceptional graphics and video playback performance even when the computer is located miles away.

Through Flex-Port technology, the Draco compact ultra extender is able to auto-sense individual units through any available port on the chassis. Simply connecting the extender to the chassis enables the internal firmware to recognize and auto-configure the port as a computer (CPU) or console device (CON) — therefore saving time for system installers who normally have to preconfigure ports to specific I/O requirements.

The Draco compact ultra matrix includes an internal control system that can simplify the management of EDID and USB-HID when dissimilar types of displays are connected to the same switch and may have mismatched data in display resolutions. The tera tool GUI provides software tools to enable copying, emulating, and cloning EDID or USB configurations. The EDID configuration settings ensure that display screens, TVs, or projectors connected to the switch show the best-possible picture. Another setup menu provides configuration for USB emulation that allows a common configuration across different USB devices to reduce the wait time for the keyboard and mouse to be recognized by the CPU source.

Setup and configuration of a Draco compact ultra matrix is fast and easy using the system's on-screen display or through the feature-enhanced Draco tera Tool software for configuration and real-time diagnostics. System administrators can switch, control, and manage the matrix right from the computer or from any third-party touch panel or control system.

For mission-critical and 24/7 operations such as broadcast, 3D design, visualization, and military command and control environments, Draco compact ultra units can be installed in chassis assemblies providing redundant power and redundant path distribution. IHSE also provides optional Draco vario add-on modules for digital audio input and output as well as data signals, such as USB 2.0 and RS-232.

More information about IHSE USA's KVM matrix switch and extender products is available at www.ihseusa.com.

# # #

About IHSE USA

IHSE USA is a leading provider of KVM (keyboard, video, and mouse) products supporting long-distance signal extenders and switching for DVI, HDMI, VGA, SDI, USB, audio, and RS-232 serial data. For 30 years, IHSE has been developing new and innovative ways of supporting next-generation products for KVM and signal extenders. IHSE technology is deployed worldwide by public and private organizations in industries such as broadcasting, post production, government and military, medical, financial, and oil and petroleum. The company offers a complete line of DVI and HDMI video extenders over Cat-X or fiber-optic cables for mission-critical video and data access.

All trademarks appearing in this document are property of their respective owners.

Link to Word Doc: www.wallstcom.com/IHSE/190221IHSE.docx

Photo Link: 

www.wallstcom.com/IHSE/IHSE_IP-CPU.jpg

Photo Caption: New Draco vario Remote IP CPU revolutionizes both KVM and virtual server space by combining two systems into one.

Visit IHSE USA at CABSAT 2019, Stand C2-102

Visit IHSE USA at the 2019 NAB Show, Booth SL9610

Share it on Twitter:https://twitter.com/intent/tweet?text=.@IHSEUSMarketing%20announces%20Draco%20compact%20ultra,%20all-new%20prepackaged%20HDMI%202.0%20matrix%20KVM%20system%20%20-%20http://bit.ly/2T9EEnm%20@NABShow%20@CABSAT

 

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Author: Dundee Hills Group
Posted: February 21, 2019, 10:26 pm
STATE COLLEGE, Pa. — Feb. 21, 2019 — Videon, a cutting-edge developer of 4K and HD streaming products that enable users to move media from any source to any screen, today announced that its new EdgeCaster edge compute encoder earned a Best of Show award at ISE 2019 from AV Technology Europe. ...

Videon, a cutting-edge developer of 4K and HD streaming products that enable users to move media from any source to any screen, today announced that its new EdgeCaster edge compute encoder earned a Best of Show award at ISE 2019 from AV Technology Europe.

STATE COLLEGE, Pa. — Feb. 21, 2019 — Videon, a cutting-edge developer of 4K and HD streaming products that enable users to move media from any source to any screen, today announced that its new EdgeCaster edge compute encoder earned a Best of Show award at ISE 2019 from AV Technology Europe.

Recognized by the magazine as one of the year's latest and greatest products, Videon's EdgeCaster addresses professional and prosumer demand for lower-cost, lower-latency live streaming by reducing latency to less than four seconds from camera to playback and by cutting the average user's streaming costs by 50 percent.

"We're pleased that ISE 2019 attendees, including a panel of expert judges, recognized the remarkable performance of our new EdgeCaster edge compute encoder in enabling economical high-quality streaming," said Todd Erdley, Videon co-founder and CEO. "We believe that the EdgeCaster encoder's ease of use, low latency, and low price point will transform live streaming — and streaming business models — across a wide range of use cases."

The new EdgeCaster edge compute encoder line made its debut at ISE 2019. Videon will begin shipping the EdgeCaster HD and EdgeCaster 4K during Q2.

More information about Videon and its technologies is available at https://streaming.videon-central.com/.

# # #

About Videon

Videon Central is a cutting-edge developer of 4K and HD streaming products that enable prosumers and professionals to move media from any source to any screen. While the company's streaming systems enable simpler, more economical streaming of high-quality video, its modules and services help manufacturers bring their products to fruition. Through partnerships with leading silicon and software companies, Videon technology has been incorporated into more than 30 million devices. Dedicated to being more than just a technology company, Videon actively supports its employees, its community, and the environment.

Videon simply moves media. www.videon-central.com

All trademarks and registered trademarks mentioned herein are the property of their respective owners.

Link to Word Doc: www.wallstcom.com/Videon/190221Videon.docx

Photo Link:

www.wallstcom.com/Videon/Videon_EdgeCaster_Front.jpg

www.wallstcom.com/Videon/Videon_EdgeCaster-Studio.jpg

Photo Caption: Videon's EdgeCaster Edge Compute Encoder

Share it on Twitter: https://twitter.com/intent/tweet?text=.@videon_central%20EdgeCaster%20Earns%20Best%20of%20Show%20Award%20at%20%23ISE2019%20-%20http://bit.ly/2tvLAwE

Follow Videon:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/videon.central  

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Google+: https://plus.google.com/+Videon-central

Author: Dundee Hills Group
Posted: February 21, 2019, 10:12 pm
NBC Sports’ coverage of the Six Nations rugby championship continues February 23 with France versus Scotland in Paris and Wales versus England in Cardiff. On February 24, Italy faces off against Ireland in Rome. Streaming service NBC Sports Gold has the matches live: 9:15 a.m. ET for ...

Unbeaten Wales versus unbeaten England in Cardiff

NBC Sports’ coverage of the Six Nations rugby championship continues February 23 with France versus Scotland in Paris and Wales versus England in Cardiff. On February 24, Italy faces off against Ireland in Rome.

Streaming service NBC Sports Gold has the matches live: 9:15 a.m. ET for France-Scotland and 11:45 for Wales-England, then 10 a.m. a day later for Italy-Ireland. The service’s Rugby Pass costs $69.99. The matches appear commercial-free.

Cable network NBCSN shows the matches on delay: France-Scotland at 12:30 ET February 23, Wales-England at 2:30, and Italy-Ireland February 24 at noon. Former England internationals Derek Rae and Alex Corbisiero anchor NBCSN’s studio coverage.

The Six Nations consists of 15 international matches, as each of the six national squads play the others. England and Wales sit atop the table with two wins and zero losses apiece. Ireland won it last year.

NBC said viewership of the Six Nations on NBCSN in 2019 is up 31% over 2018, averaging 140,000 viewers so far. 

Author: Michael Malone
Posted: February 21, 2019, 10:05 pm
Accelerating Producer-Driven News Workflows Staying on top in today's highly competitive and rapidly changing broadcast world is an ongoing challenge for news producers everywhere. The key success factor is the ability to produce more stories faster and as cost-effectively as possible, with robust ...

Staying on top in today's highly competitive and rapidly changing broadcast world is an ongoing challenge for news producers everywhere. The key success factor is the ability to produce more stories faster and as cost-effectively as possible, with robust and easy-to-use tools that don't require specialized staff. ChyronHego's solution is the CAMIO Universe, an end-to-end, all-software ecosystem for multiplatform news delivery. The CAMIO Universe drives template-based, unified news workflows and places the industry's most powerful storytelling tools at producers' fingertips. The heart of the CAMIO Universe is ChyronHego's award-winning CAMIO graphic asset management system. At the 2019 NAB Show, ChyronHego will highlight CAMIO's extreme versatility and flexibility for news producers, with a focus on its seamless integration with virtually any newsroom computer system (NRCS) in the world.

Accelerating Producer-Driven News Workflows

Staying on top in today's highly competitive and rapidly changing broadcast world is an ongoing challenge for news producers everywhere. The key success factor is the ability to produce more stories faster and as cost-effectively as possible, with robust and easy-to-use tools that don't require specialized staff. ChyronHego's solution is the CAMIO Universe, an end-to-end, all-software ecosystem for multiplatform news delivery. The CAMIO Universe drives template-based, unified news workflows and places the industry's most powerful storytelling tools at producers' fingertips. The heart of the CAMIO Universe is ChyronHego's award-winning CAMIO graphic asset management system. At the 2019 NAB Show, ChyronHego will highlight CAMIO's extreme versatility and flexibility for news producers, with a focus on its seamless integration with virtually any newsroom computer system (NRCS) in the world.

Designed specifically for OTT content creation and publishing, ChyronHego's all-new Vidigo News will make its North American debut at the 2019 NAB Show. Vidigo News is an all-in-one newsroom production solution for templated, producer-driven OTT workflows that operate seamlessly alongside linear productions. Vidigo News packages ChyronHego's Vidigo Live Compositor for live multicamera production with the company's award-winning GFX solutions, the Live Assist production automation system, and a Live Assist Panels user interface. The result gives news producers a complete solution for expanding their presence with new-media audiences and delivering high-impact content faster and easier than ever before. 

Also on display will be PRIME Graphics 3.5, the latest version of ChyronHego's universal graphics platform. Driven by ChyronHego's powerful rendering engine, PRIME Graphics provides a single, easy-to-use 4K- and IP-ready graphics design and playout platform for better news storytelling — whether producers are looking to deliver a simple lower third or news ticker, a sophisticated and eye-catching video wall behind the anchor, or a touch screen that a reporter can use to illustrate the story. At the 2019 NAB Show, ChyronHego will highlight all-new GPU capabilities that enable PRIME to drive a virtually unlimited number of pixels and synchronize multiple outputs for highly sophisticated video walls of any screen size and shape. ChyronHego will also unveil powerful new HDR capabilities in PRIME for creating native HDR graphics and outputting them to an HDR channel.

ChyronHego will showcase the newest developments for its family of augmented reality (AR) graphics and virtual set solutions, all designed to make these advanced technologies accessible and affordable to news operations of all sizes. With ChyronHego's Hybrid AR solutions, news producers and journalists can create and drive highly sophisticated AR graphics with no more effort than it takes to create a lower third, all managed from the same NRCS rundown. Another key AR focus will be the new integration with Epic Games' Unreal Engine. With Unreal's industry-leading rendering and real-time special effects tools, news producers are now able to add eye-catching photorealistic and hyper-realistic elements to their on-air virtual sets and speed up the process of delivering AR graphics for day-to-day newscasts.

Photo Link: www.wallstcom.com/ChyronHego/ChyronHego-PRIMEGraphics.jpg

Photo Caption: ChyronHego PRIME Graphics

 

Powerful and Effective Channel Branding 

Effective and compelling channel branding has never been more important for news producers, not only to reinforce the station's brand identity and retain audience share but also to open the door to lucrative new revenue opportunities. At the 2019 NAB Show, ChyronHego will feature the latest channel branding capabilities built into its NewsTicker 5 and PRIME Graphics solutions.

In use by 85 percent of the North American broadcast market, NewsTicker 5 is a robust, web-based platform for effortless creation of on-screen ticker displays. Through a tight integration with the PRIME Graphics platform, NewsTicker 5 is able to exploit all of PRIME Graphics' powerful data management capabilities for delivering localized channel branding and support for multiple languages, with seamless display of weather alerts and other breaking news data. An all-new, HTML 5-based user interface gives producers the ability to control shows remotely from their laptops or tablets and accelerates their ability to develop new sponsorships and other revenue-generating opportunities.

 

Supercharging Broadcast Sports

Sophisticated on-screen graphics for highlighting sports plays and illuminating the action are now a fixture of sports broadcasting, and viewers have come to expect features such as virtual first-down lines in football or replays in which analysts circle players and draw their movements on the screen. Broadcasters need tools that make generating these graphics as fast and easy as possible, but that also open a new range of opportunities for sponsorships and revenue generation. Designed with these specific goals in mind, ChyronHego's Paint and Virtual Placement solutions for real-time data visualization in live sports broadcasting will both be highlighted at the 2019 NAB Show.

With the Paint telestration and analysis tool, broadcasters are able to generate sophisticated Illustrated Replays™ by visually analyzing game play and graphically highlighting the video to be replayed. In addition to full 4K support and integration with industry-leading EVS and Grass Valley replay systems, Version 7.5 of Paint now includes tools for seamless and automatic publishing of the telestrated replay clips to social media outlets, including YouTube and Facebook.

ChyronHego's Virtual Placement adds robust, tied-to-surface virtual graphics to live productions without the need for a specialist operator, expensive camera sensors, or lengthy calibration processes. At the 2019 NAB Show, ChyronHego will highlight powerful new capabilities for maximizing revenue opportunities in Virtual Placement 7.1. For instance, a single Virtual Placement system can now output up to four different virtual graphics at once, accelerating localization of graphics and regionalization of advertising.

Another important new Virtual Placement 7.1 capability is remote graphics placement for international rights holders. Now, with a local Virtual Placement system on their premises, broadcasters anywhere can insert a virtual graphic into the clean feed downstream of the broadcast venue, with no additional calibration needed to make the graphic track realistically on the field. In this manner, they can avoid the expense and logistical challenges of deploying on-site production teams and equipment at the sports venue.

Photo Link: www.wallstcom.com/ChyronHego/ChyronHego-VirtualPlacement_7.1.png

Photo Caption: ChyronHego Virtual Placement 7.1

Photo Link: www.wallstcom.com/ChyronHego/ChyronHego-Paint_7.5.png

Photo Caption: ChyronHego Paint 7.5

 

Enhancing the Stadium/Venue Experience 

For sports teams and arenas, delivering an even more exciting and captivating in-venue experience is key to drawing fans away from their TV screens and into the stadium. LED screens are bigger, more sophisticated, and more complex than ever, with advanced technologies such as HDR making the on-screen presentation almost as exciting as what's actually happening on the field. ChyronHego's Click Effects PRIME is a set of highly integrated and turnkey graphics-authoring tools that make delivering these live arena- and stadium-based AV presentations almost as easy as "click-effect."

With Click Effects PRIME, stadiums can easily deliver AV presentations to any canvas size and any number of outputs in any resolution. At the 2019 NAB Show, ChyronHego will demonstrate new features that make the product even more versatile. While stadiums were previously limited to HD-SDI resolutions (e.g. 1920 x 1080) in order to synchronize outputs, Click Effects PRIME now includes native GPU-based technology for driving multiple screens at UHD resolutions and delivering a much higher number of pixels per physical output. With GPU power, Click Effects PRIME users can synchronize multiple outputs in native resolutions and across multiple physical servers, unleashing an almost infinite range of creative possibilities.

In addition, a new integration of Click Effects PRIME with industry-leading production switchers from Grass Valley now provides a single point of control for in-venue technical directors to switch shows and deliver game-in-progress graphics simultaneously to multiple displays.

Photo Link: www.wallstcom.com/ChyronHego/ChyronHego-ClickEffectsPRIME.jpg

Photo Caption: ChyronHego Click Effects PRIME

Company Quote:

"At our NAB booth this year, visitors will notice a common theme: tools that empower media companies to generate more revenue opportunities and capture broader audiences while staying within budgetary constraints. Whether it is virtually placing advertising on a field for broadcast or at the venue, or entering the new world of in-game betting, ChyronHego has a long history of taking live data and visualizing it to engage and entertain audiences wherever they may be. It's all about building more efficiencies into the workflows of our media customers and empowering news teams to tell more compelling stories. Across the board, you'll see enhancements to our products that help media companies seamlessly deliver compelling content to viewers watching over linear and digital platforms alike."

— Marco Lopez, ChyronHego CEO

Link to Marco Lopez Headshot: www.wallstcom.com/ChyronHego/ChyronHego-MarcoLopez-CEO.jpg

Company Overview:

ChyronHego, a portfolio company of Vector Capital, is a global leader in products, services, and solutions for the sports and broadcast industries. Its sports division specializes in creating, analyzing, and distributing sports data and sports video, as well as empowering the visualization of this content for a wide range of application areas. ChyronHego offers some of the industry's most widely deployed sports solutions — including TRACAB™ optical sports tracking system; TRACAB RF and TRACAB GO wearable tracking; and Coach Paint for video analysis.

Headquartered in New York, ChyronHego also has offices in the Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Mexico, the Netherlands, Norway, Singapore, Slovak Republic, Sweden, and the United Kingdom.

For more information on ChyronHego, visit www.chyronhego.com.

All trademarks appearing herein are the property of their respective owners.

Link to Word Doc: www.wallstcom.com/ChyronHego/190221ChyronHego.docx

2019 NAB Show Product Preview

ChyronHego

April 8-11

Booth SL1208

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Author: Dundee Hills Group
Posted: February 21, 2019, 9:58 pm
Jon Stewart, former host of The Daily Show, will appear on Fox News February 25 to discuss Sept. 11 first responders and the “Never Forget the Heroes” Fund Act, the network said. Co-anchor Sandra Smith will interview Stewart in the 10 a.m. hour. Stewart and John Feal, Sept. 11 demolition ...

Comedian will talk about ‘Never Forget the Heroes’ Fund Act

Jon Stewart, former host of The Daily Show, will appear on Fox News February 25 to discuss Sept. 11 first responders and the “Never Forget the Heroes” Fund Act, the network said. Co-anchor Sandra Smith will interview Stewart in the 10 a.m. hour.

Stewart and John Feal, Sept. 11 demolition supervisor, will be in the Fox News Washington bureau, previewing the bipartisan bill.

Fox News said Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) will hold a press conference in Washington, DC at 3 pm February 25 to introduce the bill. The legislation would ensure that all Sept. 11 first responders and survivors injured by the toxins at Ground Zero that have certified illnesses stemming from that day receive their full compensation through the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund.

Author: Michael Malone
Posted: February 21, 2019, 9:48 pm
SUDBURY, Mass. — Feb. 21, 2019 ― Yamaha Unified Communications is helping enterprises move toward consistent, simple, and high-quality collaboration experiences in any conference room and meeting space with its latest solutions in booth 1027 at Enterprise Connect, March 18-20 in Orlando, Florida. ...

Yamaha Unified Communications is helping enterprises move toward consistent, simple, and high-quality collaboration experiences in any conference room and meeting space with its latest solutions in booth 1027 at Enterprise Connect, March 18-20 in Orlando, Florida. Phil Marechal, Yamaha UC's vice president of business development and product management, will participate in an expert panel on huddle room trends.

SUDBURY, Mass. — Feb. 21, 2019 ― Yamaha Unified Communications is helping enterprises move toward consistent, simple, and high-quality collaboration experiences in any conference room and meeting space with its latest solutions in booth 1027 at Enterprise Connect, March 18-20 in Orlando, Florida. Phil Marechal, Yamaha UC's vice president of business development and product management, will participate in an expert panel on huddle room trends.

"In this fast-paced world, meeting participants need to be able to feel comfortable and hear those on the far end clearly to brainstorm new ideas and accomplish goals," said Michael Fitch, vice president of sales and marketing, at Yamaha UC. "At Enterprise Connect, we're helping business and technology executives balance these user demands with solutions that integrate with UC applications they're already using, are simple to deploy, and deliver clear, natural audio in every meeting environment. Attendees will be able to perfect their UC strategy, shortening the distance between remote participants and supporting agile collaboration — no matter if users are meeting in the boardroom, joining a call from their home, or spontaneously gathering for a video chat in a huddle room."

For boardrooms and large conference rooms utilizing UC applications, the Yamaha YAI-1 Wireless Microphone Conference Ensemble, a ready-to-deploy professional bundle, includes an eight-channel Executive Elite wireless microphone package; two VXL1-16P PoE, Dante®-enabled speaker arrays with wall volume controller; a preconfigured digital signal processor; a five-port PoE switch; Dante AVIO USB adapter; and cabling. Once the system is set up, it connects to any UC platform through a single USB cable. Utilizing Yamaha's leading audio engineering expertise, the system features advanced acoustic echo cancellation (AEC) algorithms and dynamic microphone mixing technology that drives the best-in-class audio experience and meets the requirement of enterprise IT departments for fast and simple installation and setup.

Supporting the best quality audio for remote meetings whenever and wherever, the YVC-200 Portable USB + Bluetooth Speakerphone is designed to provide high-performance audio that goes everywhere with the user. Compact and easy to use, the device leverages Yamaha's AEC and human voice activity detection to boost productivity when meeting remotely or in an open workspace. The unit features an intelligent microphone that delivers full-duplex conversation without sound dropouts and a powerful speaker that produces audio that feels as if every remote participant on the call is in the room.

Designed for huddle rooms, the Yamaha CS-700 Video Sound Collaboration System delivers the highest quality audio, video, and collaboration capabilities in a simple and smart wall-mounted unit that is easy to install and deploy. It features an adaptive beamforming microphone array for perfectly captured conversation; four Yamaha speaker elements to provide the highest degree of audio intelligibility; and a wide-angle HD camera for the far-end participants to see everyone in clear detail. Users can quickly connect to any UC platform via a single USB, eliminating the frustrations and inefficiencies of operating disparate video, audio, and collaboration components. In addition, the CS-700's integrated network management system allows IT staff to deploy and remotely manage each unit from one location, increasing service response and efficiency.

Suited for large conference spaces and multipurpose meeting rooms, the Yamaha YVC-1000 conference phone features a separate microphone and full-range speaker unit that can be placed close to a display for naturally blended audio and video for full participant comprehension. It can support two external speakers and up to five daisy-chained microphones and is capable of being paired with other microphone systems via an input jack for even more scalability in larger meeting rooms. Its plug-and-play simplicity and auto-tune setup also allow participants to get started quickly with audio optimized to the room conditions.

Also during the show, Marechal will provide his thought leadership in the panel "Huddle Rooms: Behind the Scenes" on Monday, March 18, from 8:00 to 8:45 a.m. in room Osceola B. The five-panelist discussion will provide a better understanding of the huddle room trend and how to make huddle rooms work for an enterprise, reseller, or vendor.

# # #

About Yamaha Unified Communications 

Audio and video conferencing solutions from Yamaha Unified Communications, Inc. streamline collaboration and boost productivity wherever people work. Yamaha's renowned and rigorous approach to development and manufacturing of enterprise-grade microphone systems, conference phones, and video sound bars ensures superior audio quality, reliability, and flexibility. With both wired and wireless options, Yamaha's unified communications (UC) products enable users to have natural, clear conversations in every meeting space.

More information can be found at uc.yamaha.com.

All trademarks and registered trademarks mentioned herein are the property of their respective owners.

PR Link: www.ingearpr.com/YamahaUC/190221YamahaUC.docx

Photo Link: www.ingearpr.com/YamahaUC/YAI-1Bundle.jpg 

Photo Caption: The Yamaha YAI-1 is a preconfigured, high-quality audio conferencing solution for conference rooms and boardrooms.

Photo Link: www.ingearpr.com/YamahaUC/Yamaha_UC_YVC_1000.jpg 

Photo Caption: YVC-1000 Conference Phone

Photo Link: www.ingearpr.com/YamahaUC/Yamaha_UC_CS-700-App.jpg 

Photo Caption: The CS-700 Video Sound Collaboration System

Visit Yamaha UC at Enterprise Connect, Booth 1027

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Author: Dundee Hills Group
Posted: February 21, 2019, 9:36 pm
CAMBRIDGE, Ontario — Feb. 20, 2019 — Bannister Lake's industry-leading data and graphics management solution, Chameleon, will be in the spotlight at the 2019 NAB Show with a focus on the product's new election, sponsorship, and security functionality. As broadcasters start planning for the 2020 ...

Bannister Lake's industry-leading data and graphics management solution, Chameleon, will be in the spotlight at the 2019 NAB Show with a focus on the product's new election, sponsorship, and security functionality.

CAMBRIDGE, Ontario — Feb. 20, 2019 — Bannister Lake's industry-leading data and graphics management solution, Chameleon, will be in the spotlight at the 2019 NAB Show with a focus on the product's new election, sponsorship, and security functionality.

As broadcasters start planning for the 2020 presidential election, Chameleon boasts improvements to its election race modules, providing producers with more options to ingest and manage result data feeds, referendums, propositions, and acclaimed candidates.

The latest release highlights Chameleon's ability to drive online, mobile, and social media election experiences by feeding data to web widgets and automatically sending out tweets based on Chameleon data conditions. These exciting features allow producers to utilize Chameleon data to visualize election results interactively, presenting innovative new storytelling possibilities.

A new and improved sponsor module tracks and connects campaigns to specific sponsors, making as-run logging clearer and better defined. Chameleon also includes enhanced security features aligned with NIST guidelines with improved password protection.

Bannister Lake has also focused a great deal of attention on social media, enhancing Chameleon's Twitter search capabilities and improving the product's media module, introducing bins for organizing content and the enablement of multifile uploads.

Product demonstrations will feature projects focused on Bannister Lake's recent work in elections, eSports, and event signage.

At NAB, Bannister Lake will also be introducing a new version of its Chameleon NDI player, providing NDI users with the ability to fully manage and visualize live data feeds. NDI users will be able to integrate, moderate, and customize multiple live data feeds into graphic templates and provide their audiences with real-time news, weather, sports, social media, financial, and customized data.

As part of NAB's Broadcast Engineering and Information Technology Conference (BEITC), Al Savoie, Bannister Lake's creative and technical director, will be presenting his co-authored whitepaper "New Methodologies in Real-Time Data Aggregation and Management for Broadcast Presentation and Distribution." The interactive session will explore Bannister Lake's unique approach to data aggregation and feature production examples from both broadcast and eSports. Savoie's presentation takes place on April 10 at 4 p.m. at the Las Vegas Convention Center room N260.

In addition, NAB attendees will have the opportunity to learn more about Bannister Lake's Zeus media storage and playout solution. Perfect for image- and clip-intensive production environments, Zeus provides producers with easy and immediate access to content. It is an ideal solution for home shopping channels, entertainment programs, news, sports productions, and any situation where high volume, quick turnaround, and unpredictability of clip and image requirements must be carefully managed. With minimum custom development, Zeus can be fully integrated with popular MAM systems, providing broadcasters with access to vast libraries of clip and image content.

For more information about Chameleon and other Bannister Lake solutions at NAB, please visit www.bannisterlake.com. Be sure to visit Bannister Lake at the 2019 NAB Show, Booth SL5616.

# # #

About Bannister Lake Inc.

Bannister Lake is a leading provider of professional video graphic display solutions for broadcast television, cable, satellite, audio/visual and information presentation applications, eSports, and digital signage worldwide. Our solutions integrate seamlessly with existing infrastructures while automating the integration and display of external data sources, improving the productivity of any organization. Visit us online at www.bannisterlake.com.

All trademarks and registered trademarks mentioned herein are the property of their respective owners.

PR Link: www.ingearpr.com/BannisterLake/190220BannisterLake.docx

Photo Links: www.ingearpr.com/BannisterLake/BL_Chameleon.jpg

Caption: Bannister Lake's Chameleon, data aggregation and graphics management solution, takes center stage at the 2019 NAB Show, Booth SL5616.

Visit Bannister Lake at the 2019 NAB Show, Booth SL5616

Share it on Twitter:https://twitter.com/intent/tweet?text=.@BannisterLake%20presents%20new%20features%20and%20NDI%20version%20of%20%23Chameleon%20data%20aggregation%20and%20graphic%20management%20solution%20at%20%23NAB2019%20-%20NDI%20Central%20Pavilion%20SL5616%20-%20http://bit.ly/2SMOuwl%20@NABShow

 

Follow Bannister Lake

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YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCyztFDpw_dx278QdroHlbDg

Author: Dundee Hills Group
Posted: February 21, 2019, 8:59 pm
FCC Chairman Ajit Pai will be a keynote speaker at the American Cable Association's Summit March 19-21 in Washington. It will be a three-peat for Pai at the annual conclave of small and medium-sized cable operators. “Since becoming Chairman two years ago, Mr. Pai has launched an aggressive agenda ...

Joins strong lineup of D.C. officials

FCC Chairman Ajit Pai will be a keynote speaker at the American Cable Association's Summit March 19-21 in Washington. It will be a three-peat for Pai at the annual conclave of small and medium-sized cable operators.

“Since becoming Chairman two years ago, Mr. Pai has launched an aggressive agenda to foster the deployment of broadband network infrastructure, close the digital divide, and eliminate unnecessary regulations," said ACA President Matt Polka. "We look forward to hearing the Chairman discuss his plans for upcoming FCC actions."

Related: ACA: USF Needs Public Interest Fixes

Polka will conduct a "fireside chat" with the chairman March 21.

Pai joins a speaker lineup that already includes the second most senior FCC Republican, Commissioner Michael O'Rielly, and Pai's opposite number in the merger review department at Justice, antitrust chief Makan Delrahim.

Broadcasting & Cable sister publication Multichannel News is an official "media partner" of the summit.

Author: John Eggerton
Posted: February 21, 2019, 8:50 pm
At the 2019 NAB Show, DVB, an industry consortium that develops open interoperable technical specifications for the delivery of digital media, will demonstrate how it is enabling an open standards-based approach to OTT and broadband television, as well as Low Latency DASH (LL-DASH) and Multicast ...

At the 2019 NAB Show, DVB, an industry consortium that develops open interoperable technical specifications for the delivery of digital media, will demonstrate how it is enabling an open standards-based approach to OTT and broadband television, as well as Low Latency DASH (LL-DASH) and Multicast Adaptive Bit Rate (mABR) for video streaming applications. This marks the first time DVB has exhibited at the NAB Show since 2010.

At the 2019 NAB Show, DVB, an industry consortium that develops open interoperable technical specifications for the delivery of digital media, will demonstrate how it is enabling an open standards-based approach to OTT and broadband television, as well as Low Latency DASH (LL-DASH) and Multicast Adaptive Bit Rate (mABR) for video streaming applications. This marks the first time DVB has exhibited at the NAB Show since 2010.

"Broadcast TV works. It just works. You turn it on, and it's there. It works because of open standards and the reliable, robust delivery methods at the heart of broadcasting," said Peter MacAvock, Chair of DVB. "We believe that OTT should work just as well, if not better. If you agree, then come and talk to us at the NAB Show about how we can collaborate on standards to ensure TV continues to work flawlessly, even when it's not always on a TV."

DVB is offering a free exhibits pass for the 2019 NAB Show with the code LV4984.

At the 2019 NAB Show, DVB Will Highlight the Following:

New DVB-I Specifications Ensure High QoS, Robust Delivery, and Interoperability for OTT

At the 2019 NAB Show, DVB will showcase DVB-I, a new suite of specifications that will make OTT delivery just as user-friendly and robust as classical delivery solutions (e.g., DVB-S/C/T and IPTV). Taking advantage of the internet as a distribution platform, DVB-I will bring the best features of broadcast TV into the world of broadband delivery, including integrated channel lists, interactive content guides, and simple lean-back channel selection. As a standardized solution, DVB-I will provide significant advantages related to scalability and cost savings.

Low Latency DASH and mABR Improve Video Streaming Experiences

Also highlighted at the 2019 NAB Show will be Low Latency DASH (LL-DASH) and Multicast Adaptive Bit Rate (mABR), standards that are currently under development by DVB. LL-DASH will ensure that the zapping experience for OTT channels is the equivalent to broadcast, while mABR will allow broadcasters and network operators to work together to optimize IP-based delivery to large numbers of receivers simultaneously.

Executive Presentations:

In the Connected Media|IP debate theater on Monday, April 8, from 12 to 12:40 p.m. Peter MacAvock, DVB chairman and head of delivery, platforms and services in the EBU's Technology & Innovation Department, will participate in a panel called, "Winning Hearts and Minds to Compete in the TV battleground." The panel will examine content discovery, recommendation, and personalization trends. Challenging questions around the readiness of key technologies and standards will be answered, with insights provided about where the user experience is heading and how operators can succeed in building compelling platforms and engaged viewers.

Also on Monday, April 8, from 4:40 to 5 p.m. in the Connected Media|IP presentation theater, MacAvock will give a presentation called, "Evolving Linear TV in an OTT World." During this session, attendees will learn about how the DVB Project is delivering new specifications to enable a standards-based approach to OTT, whether in the context of hybrid broadcast platforms or as a standalone proposition.

Company Overview:

DVB is an industry-led consortium of broadcasters, manufacturers, network operators, software developers, regulators and others from around the world committed to designing open interoperable technical specifications for the global delivery of digital media and broadcast services. DVB specifications cover all aspects of digital television from transmission through interfacing, conditional access and interactivity for digital video, audio and data. DVB dominates the digital broadcasting environment with thousands of broadcast services around the world using DVB specifications. There are hundreds of manufacturers offering DVB compliant equipment. To date there are over a billion DVB receivers shipped worldwide.

Further information about DVB can be found at: www.dvb.org, www.dvbservices.com, and www.dvbworld.org.

DVB and DVB sub-brands are registered trademarks.

All trademarks appearing herein are the property of their respective owners.

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Link to Word Doc: www.202comms.com/DVB/190220DVB.docx

2019 NAB Show Exhibitor Preview

April 8-11

Las Vegas

Booth SU8724 

Author: Dundee Hills Group
Posted: February 21, 2019, 8:32 pm
In the Middle East market, today's satellite operators need high-performance, cost-effective satcom solutions for delivering high-quality broadcast and high-speed broadband offerings. At CABSAT 2019, WORK Microwave — a market leader with more than 30 years of experience — will demonstrate its ...

In the Middle East market, today's satellite operators need high-performance, cost-effective satcom solutions for delivering high-quality broadcast and high-speed broadband offerings. At CABSAT 2019, WORK Microwave — a market leader with more than 30 years of experience — will demonstrate its latest satcom innovations for all frequencies, including UHF-, L-, S-, C-, X-, Ku-, K-, Ka-, Q-, and V-band. A key highlight will be WORK Microwave's AX-80 modem, which is one of the only end-to-end solutions for wideband applications.

In the Middle East market, today's satellite operators need high-performance, cost-effective satcom solutions for delivering high-quality broadcast and high-speed broadband offerings. At CABSAT 2019, WORK Microwave — a market leader with more than 30 years of experience — will demonstrate its latest satcom innovations for all frequencies, including UHF-, L-, S-, C-, X-, Ku-, K-, Ka-, Q-, and V-band. A key highlight will be WORK Microwave's AX-80 modem, which is one of the only end-to-end solutions for wideband applications.

 Future-Proof A-Series Modems

WORK Microwave will demonstrate several powerful modems from its A-Series all-IP platform at CABSAT 2019. The A-Series is a highly scalable, all-IP family of satellite modems, modulators, and demodulators, featuring a flexible SDR (Software Defined Radio) architecture and the opportunity for customization. Offering support for DVB-S2X up to 256APSK and expandable for customized waveforms, the A-Series is the perfect platform for a variety of applications, from low to very high throughput.

• AX-80 Modem: A key highlight at the show will be WORK Microwave's AX-80 wideband modem, the world's first functional wideband modem that supports the DVB-S2X standard, with 500 Msps bidirectional throughput. During a live demo, attendees can see the exceptional spectrum output and high-quality signal transmission enabled by the AX-80 modem. Integrated with 10G Ethernet interfaces, the modem supports full throughput with 256APSK and 3 Gbps per direction without any compromises or tradeoffs. Using this next-gen device, operators can optimize the use of high-speed, IP-based broadcast and broadband access in future Ka-band or Q/V band satellite systems with wideband transponders. WORK Microwave's AX-80 is fully functioning and now shipping worldwide.

• AX-60 Modem: WORK Microwave will also showcase its AX-60 modem. Beyond supporting the DVB-S2X standard and advanced features such as higher modulation schemes, a finer granularity of ModCods, and cutting-edge filtering, the future-proof modem offers ACM technology that optimizes data throughput according to the current link situation and receiving conditions (e.g., rain events). As a result, utilization of the transponder resources and the system capacity increases.

Photo Link: www.202comms.com/WorkMicrowave/WORKMW-Aseries.png

Photo Caption: WORK Microwave AX-80 Wideband All-IP Platform

 Compact Satellite Up- and Downconverter — IF/KU-Band 

WORK Microwave's compact and cost-effective frequency converter for satellite operators, integrators, and teleports is ideal for classic IF and Ku frequency bands. The compact version enables operators to support multiple simultaneous channels in one unit, saving significant rack space and costs. WORK Microwave also offers traditional modular converter series suited for higher-frequency applications (i.e., Ka-, Q-, and V-bands).

 

Quad-Band Ka Block Upconverter

WORK Microwave's Quad-Band Ka Block Upconverter with IF input at L-band covers the entire Ka-band at the RF output from 27.5 GHz to 31 GHz in four switchable bands. The converter provides excellent phase noise, low noise figure, and a high dynamic range. Low spurious emissions also allow WORK Microwave customers to use the converters in demanding environments, such as in high-power video uplinks. The unit comes in an outdoor housing and can be operated over a temperature range of -40 °C to 60 °C. The housing provides environmental protection according to IP67 (temporary flooding) when all cables are connected and sealed appropriately, and due to its rugged construction and low power consumption, it is perfect for fixed satellite earth stations, satellite newsgathering vehicles, and fly-aways.

 

DVB-S2X Satellite Broadcast Modulator

WORK Microwave's DVB-S2X Satellite Broadcast Modulator is one of the industry's only solutions that comes predistortion-ready for automatic group delay and nonlinearity compensation. Using this capability, operators can mitigate the negative effects in satellite filters and amplifiers while reducing power and increasing beam coverage, throughput, and availability. By supporting DVB-S2X extensions, WORK Microwave's DVB-S2X modulator provides operators with a future-proof platform that offers smaller roll-offs, advanced filtering, and higher modulation schemes for increased efficiency gains.

Photo Link: www.202comms.com/WorkMicrowave/WM-DVBS2XSatelliteBroadcastModulator.jpg

Photo Caption: WORK Microwave's DVB-S2X Satellite Broadcast Modulator

 RSCC-X Compact Redundancy Switch 

WORK Microwave's RSCC-X compact N+1 redundancy switch enables hot standby redundancy for up to eight modems or converters, acting as a reliable failsafe. The redundancy switching system monitors the health of the protected units and, in case of an alarm, copies the failed unit's configuration to the redundant unit, automatically replacing the faulty unit's functions with the spare (+1) unit.

The license-based switch supports 1+1 up to 8+1, making it easy for operators to scale up the system as its requirements grow in the future. When used in combination with the flexible ISM-8 switchbox, operators can effectively switch and monitor input and output signals.

Photo Link: www.202comms.com/WorkMicrowave/WORKMW-RSCC-X.png

Photo Caption: WORK Microwave RSCC-X Compact Redundancy Switch

About WORK Microwave (www.work-microwave.com)

Headquartered in Holzkirchen (near Munich), Germany, and comprised of four operating divisions — Satellite Communication, Navigation Simulators, Defence Electronics, and Sensors and Measurement — WORK Microwave leverages over 30 years of experience to anticipate market needs and apply an innovative and creative approach to the development of frequency converters, DVB-S2/S2X equipment, and other digital signal processing technologies while maintaining the highest standards for quality, reliability, and performance.

WORK Microwave's Satellite Communication division develops and manufactures high-performance, advanced satellite communications equipment for telecommunications companies, broadcasters, integrators, and government organizations that are operating satellite earth stations, satellite news gathering vehicles, fly-aways, and other mobile or portable satellite communication solutions.

Link to Word Doc: www.202comms.com/WorkMicrowave/190220WORKMW.docx

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CABSAT 2019 Exhibitor Preview

Stand: Hall 5 C5-13

March 12-14

Dubai

Author: Dundee Hills Group
Posted: February 21, 2019, 8:12 pm
The FCC will be voting on a proposal at its March 15 meeting to establish rules for disbursing the additional $1 billion Congress approved for post incentive-auction TV station (and now some radio station) repack/moving expenses. That is according to FCC chair Ajit Pai, who outlined the meeting's ...

FM and low-powers included in new sum

The FCC will be voting on a proposal at its March 15 meeting to establish rules for disbursing the additional $1 billion Congress approved for post incentive-auction TV station (and now some radio station) repack/moving expenses.

That is according to FCC chair Ajit Pai, who outlined the meeting's agenda in a blog post.

Most of a thousand TV stations are moving in a 10-phase repack as the FCC frees up the spectrum for wireless carriers who won the rights to the TV spectrum in the incentive auction. The FCC is compensating them for new equipment, tweaked equipment and moving costs.

"[K]een observers know that the FCC is in the midst of the 600 MHz band repack, in which hundreds of television stations are in the process of changing their transmission frequencies to make space for wireless services following our incentive auction," he wrote. "Last week, the Commission issued a public notice noting that the repack is ahead of schedule. But we still have much work ahead of us."

That includes distributing all that money. "

For instance," he said, "last year Congress approved an additional $1 billion to cover broadcaster transition costs, and it expanded the list of entities eligible for reimbursement to include affected low-power TV stations, TV translators, and FM radio stations. Next month, the Commission will vote on a Report and Order which will establish rules for the disbursement of this funding."

The new money was included in the RAY BAUMS Act, which freed up as much as a billion more dollars, if/as needed, on top of the $1.75 billion that FCC had concluded would not quite cover it. 

The incentive auction closed April 13, 2017, with 84 MHz of spectrum raising almost $20 billion, including $7 billion for deficit reduction. The stations being repacked into new channels so the 84 MHz can be used by wireless carriers have until July 3, 2020, to make the move.

Phase one of the 10-phase transition ended Nov. 30, 2018, with all stations meeting their deadline, except those granted extensions or moves to other phases.

Author: John Eggerton
Posted: February 21, 2019, 7:35 pm
President Donald Trump tweeted his call for victory in the race to 5G next-gen wireless broadband. That came the same day a White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) update on Trump's tech accomplishments led off with efforts to goose that 5G effort. Sandwiched between tweets about ...

Said U.S. must win race to new broadband tech

President Donald Trump tweeted his call for victory in the race to 5G next-gen wireless broadband. That came the same day a White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) update on Trump's tech accomplishments led off with efforts to goose that 5G effort.

Sandwiched between tweets about The Wall and not letting an "Isis wife" back into the country, was a two-part tweet the gist of which was that the U.S, had to win and a spur to companies to "step up."

CTIA, the wireless industry association, which represents the major carriers rolling out 5G, provided an update, suggesting they had not only stepped up but were already running hard toward that goal--China is the main competitor. 

“We share the President’s commitment to leading the world in next-generation 5G wireless," said CTIA following the tweets Thursday (Feb. 21). "Thanks to the innovation, hard work and investment of America’s wireless industry, the first commercial 5G deployments are happening now, in communities across the country. With the Administration's continued backing, the U.S. wireless industry can bring more robust 5G networks to more communities faster.”

FCC Chairman Ajit Pai, who has made 5G rollout a priority as well, cited new Cisco stats to indicate the U.S. is running strong as well as hard. "In the global race to 5G, we’re in a good position coming out of the starting blocks because we’ve been forward-looking on both infrastructure and spectrum policy—key components of the FCC’s 5G FAST Plan," he blogged Thursday (Feb. 21) about the upcoming FCC March meeting, which will include a 5G related item.

Author: John Eggerton
Posted: February 21, 2019, 7:11 pm
The State of Vermont is banning Huawei, ZTE and other Chinese telecom equipment from all of its information and telecommunications systems, as well as Kaspersky-branded security products, like Anti-Virus or products from Kaspersky Government Security Solutions. That is according to a directive from ...

Also said Kaspersky-branded products must be scrubbed

The State of Vermont is banning Huawei, ZTE and other Chinese telecom equipment from all of its information and telecommunications systems, as well as Kaspersky-branded security products, like Anti-Virus or products from Kaspersky Government Security Solutions.

That is according to a directive from John Quinn, secretary of the Vermont Agency of Digital Services, as reported by the Burlington (Vt.) Free Press.

"The agency has determined that the risks presented by Kaspersky-branded products or services, and covered telecommunications equipment or services including those provided by Huawei, ZTE, Hytera, Hangzou Hikvision Technology, or Dahua Technology" were sufficient to justify the ban.

Related: Huawei Says FCC Trying Blacklist Handful of Companies

Quinn pointed to ties between Kaspersky and Russian government agencies and the potential for Chinese intelligence agencies to use Chinese info tech as espionage platforms to use against the U.S. and its allies.

The heads of U.S. intelligence agencies are in agreement that Chinese telecoms pose a security risk. In fact, in the most recent Defense Authorization Bill, federal government contractors are already prevented from buying equipment from Huawei and ZTE, and must submit a plan for phasing out the equipment already in use.

Requests for exceptions to the Vermont tech ban will be considered on a case-by-case basis and will require a "compelling justification."

Huawei president Ren Zhengfei told CBS this week his company hasn't been used as a platform for spying, and would not do so even if asked by the Chinese government.

China passed a law in 2017 requiring companies to assist national intelligence gathering, CBS pointed out.

"[W]e never participate in espionage and we do not allow any of our employees to do any act like that," Ren told CBS Morning News co-host Bianna Golodryga this week. "And we absolutely never install backdoors. Even if we were required by Chinese law, we would firmly reject that."

Author: John Eggerton
Posted: February 21, 2019, 6:56 pm
Fox took Wednesday ratings, as a robust The Masked Singer led to a hearty 1.9 in viewers 18-49, per the Nielsen overnights, and an 8 share. Runner-up NBC got a 1.3/6. On Fox, Gordon Ramsay’s 24 Hours to Hell and Back grew 10% to 1.1 and The Masked Singer climbed 8% for a 2.6. Spoiler alert--Joey ...

NBC’s ‘Chicago’ shows have a good night

Fox took Wednesday ratings, as a robust The Masked Singer led to a hearty 1.9 in viewers 18-49, per the Nielsen overnights, and an 8 share. Runner-up NBC got a 1.3/6.

Joey Fatone with host Nick Cannon

On Fox, Gordon Ramsay’s 24 Hours to Hell and Back grew 10% to 1.1 and The Masked Singer climbed 8% for a 2.6. Spoiler alert--Joey Fatone and Rumer Willis took off their masks on the Wednesday program.

On NBC, Chicago Med and Chicago Fire both got a 1.3, the first flat and the second up a tenth of a point, before a crossover episode of Chicago P.D. skyrocketed 27% to 1.4.

CBS did a 1.0/4. The season premiere of Survivor got a 1.6, same as its fall premiere, and The World’s Best lost 22% for a 0.7 from 9 to 11 p.m.

ABC was at 0.8/3. The Goldbergs got a level 1.1 and Schooled ticked up 13% to 0.9. Modern Family fell 8% to 1.1 and Single Parents grew 17% to 0.7, before Match Game rated a flat 0.5.

Univision had a 0.5/2 and Telemundo a 0.4/2.

The CW had repeats en route to a 0.2/1.

Author: Michael Malone
Posted: February 21, 2019, 5:55 pm
The White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) says the Trump Administration has been an "an active and meaningful driver for science and technology policy in America," including clearing away some impediments to the rollout of 5G and rural connectivity. That came in OSTP's Science ...

Said administration is in driver's seat

The White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) says the Trump Administration has been an "an active and meaningful driver for science and technology policy in America," including clearing away some impediments to the rollout of 5G and rural connectivity.

That came in OSTP's Science & Technology Highlights Report.

The FCC has been taking various steps to ease that rollout, including shot clocks on citing decisions and streamlining historic and environmental reviews.

OSTP does not talk specifically about the FCC--the report focuses on the non-independent agencies like the National Telecommunications & Information Administration and the National Institute of Standards and Technology (both part of Commerce), DOE and others--but it does talk generally when promoting its rural connectivity efforts, about "Federal agencies taking action to in-crease private sector investment in broadband [the FCC's Republican majority argues that includes deregulating internet access], including streamlining Federal permitting, leveraging Federal assets, and maximizing the impact of Federal funding [again, the FCC majority has argued that includes efforts to reduce waste, fraud and abuse in government broadband subsidies to low-income, often rural, Americans].

Related: White House Holds 5G Summit

The report also talked up the President's directives on a national 5G plan as well as what was billed last fall as the first cybersecurity strategy in 15 years and his executive order this month on AI R&D and education.

Interestingly, there was no explicit mention of Internet of Things (IoT) policy, which the Administration has signaled is a high priority.

It does point out under the "Cybersecurity" heading that the Administration last May released a report, with the mouthful of a title: The Enhancing the Resilience of the Internet and Communications Ecosystem Against Botnets and Other Automated, Distributed Threats, that "offers a guide to government, civil society, and industry actions that would dramatically reduce the threat of botnets and similar cyber attacks and provides "goals and suggested actions that would improve the resilience of the Internet ecosystem."

In addition, under the "Privacy" heading, the report points out that NTIA has sought comment on a way to "advance consumer privacy while protecting prosperity and innovation," while NIST had initiated development of a Privacy Framework that it envisions will be a voluntary tool for organizations to better identify, assess, manage, and communicate about privacy risks so that individuals can enjoy the benefits of innovative technologies with greater confidence and trust."

Both obviously implicate an "internet of everything" world where information is traveling over a web of connections between and among everything from nuclear power plants and connected car to fitness trackers, TVs and toasters.

NTIA has not been quiet on the subject, though it has suggested the government should not rush to regulate IoT.

"If we want to realize the innovation and growth promised by IoT, we must ensure that Americans can trust the devices that they’re using," NTIA administrator David Redl told the 6th Annual Internet of Things Global Summit in Washington Oct. 5.


Author: John Eggerton
Posted: February 21, 2019, 4:44 pm
After taking two months off to tend to illness and injury, Wendy Williams will return to her eponymous talk show on Monday, March 4, Lionsgate-owned Debmar-Mercury, which produces and distributes the show, said Thursday. “Wendy Williams is an incredible talent with the most unique voice in daytime. ...

Host has been off the air since mid-January

After taking two months off to tend to illness and injury, Wendy Williams will return to her eponymous talk show on Monday, March 4, Lionsgate-owned Debmar-Mercury, which produces and distributes the show, said Thursday.

“Wendy Williams is an incredible talent with the most unique voice in daytime. We can’t wait to welcome her back to her iconic purple chair on the set of her show on Monday, March 4,” the company said in a statement.

“We so appreciate all of the guest hosts and panelists who filled in for Wendy during this time. These people are, and always will be, true family to the show. We want to thank all of the loyal and supportive fans who have been with us for 10 years now. And of course, we thank our station and business partners, who stepped up in such a supportive way.”

Williams suffered a hairline fracture to her shoulder in December, and also was struggling with complications from Grave’s disease. Rumors also have been swirling about difficulties in her marriage with husband and manager Kevin Hunter. She initially returned to the show in January right after a planned holiday hiatus but found she needed to take a break to deal with her medical issues.

During her time off, the show was hosted by guest panelists, including Jason Biggs, Michael Rapaport, Keke Palmer and Jerry O’Connell. In the week ended Feb. 10, Nick Cannon hosted for three days, driving an 8% improvement to a 1.3 live plus same day household rating, according to Nielsen. Wendy Williams was the only talk show out of 14 on the air that improved that week. During his time on the show, Cannon gave fans updates on the host’s health and well-being.

For her part, Williams said, “Salute to Debmar-Mercury for believing from the start and thanks to my staff for tirelessly holding it down for me.”

Author: Paige Albiniak
Posted: February 21, 2019, 4:38 pm
The recently passed 2019 Appropriations bill--the one that avoided a second government shutdown--was a massive tome that included directing the FCC to provide a "full analysis" of its treatment of market modification petitions. Those are petitions by broadcasters or satellite operators or county ...

"Soft" mandate signals Hill concerns with handling requests for in-state programming

The recently passed 2019 Appropriations bill--the one that avoided a second government shutdown--was a massive tome that included directing the FCC to provide a "full analysis" of its treatment of market modification petitions.

Those are petitions by broadcasters or satellite operators or county officials to modify a market so that satellite viewers in a Nielsen market that crosses state lines can get local news and sports from TV stations from another Nielsen market in their own state instead. That is a big issue particularly with college football fans--who include legislators--wanting access to their own team, not the rival from another state, but also for viewers needing local news and emergency info close to home.

Related: FCC Gives Hart County, Ga., Access to Atlanta Stations

The STELAR (Satellite Television Extension and Localism Reauthorization Bill, which allows satellite operators to import distant TV network signals for a blanket fee rather than having to negotiate that carriage individually, included a provision in its most recent (2014) renewal that extended such market modifications, where technically feasible, to satellite operators--cable ops had been under a market mod regime for so-called "orphan counties" already. STELAR has a carveout for cases of technical or economic infeasibility given the difference between cable and satellite technologies--satellite operators use targeted spot beams to deliver local stations, which can be tougher to re-position.

Related: SBCA Pushes Permanent STELAR Renewal

An summary of the bill language points out that Congress' intent was "to ensure Americans have access to local broadcast and media content," and that "many" broadcast station coverage areas don't "neatly conform" to Nielsen markets. But it says that despite the STELAR reforms intended to address that issue, "many communities continue to struggle with market modification petitions," which must be filed with the FCC.

The bill language does not make it a hard mandate, instead saying the FCC "should" provide a full analysis" and comprehensive review of market mod decisions, directing it to "adhere to statutory requirements and congressional intent." The language does not require the FCC to compile report, simply to do its due diligence when reviewing requests.

So, in essence, Congress is just reminding the FCC of why STELAR was modified and to make sure the commission is making viewers' access to to their own local news, sports, politics and emergency info its prime directive.

Author: John Eggerton
Posted: February 21, 2019, 3:32 pm
Turns out Congress has mandated a review of the TV ratings system. The Parents Television Council had called on the FCC to undertake the review last week. Congress included a provision to that effect in the omnibus 2019 Appropriations Bill that passed last week, averting another government shutdown ...

Must report back in 90 days

Turns out Congress has mandated a review of the TV ratings system.

The Parents Television Council had called on the FCC to undertake the review last week. Congress included a provision to that effect in the omnibus 2019 Appropriations Bill that passed last week, averting another government shutdown and launching the review.

"The FCC is directed to report to the Committees on Appropriations of the House and Senate within 90 days of enactment of this Act on the extent to which the rating system matches the video content that is being shown and the ability of the TV Parental Guidelines Oversight Monitoring Board to address public concerns," a summary of the voluminous bill's contents points out.

Related: PTC Asks FCC to Overhaul Content Ratings

“Finally, after more than 20 years, Congress is addressing the needs of families and the welfare of children by formally calling for the first-ever regulatory review of the TV Content Ratings System and its ostensible oversight," said PTC president Tim Winter. "We are elated that this important legislative wording was adopted as part of the appropriations bill that funds the federal government for this fiscal year."

PTC has been lobbying for a TV ratings revamp for years, saying there are virtually no shows rated as suitable for the whole family in prime time, that shows are being mis-rated and that networks rating their own shows has always been problematic and an inherent conflict of interest. 

That effort has included joining with other groups to ask the FCC to overhaul the system.

Author: John Eggerton
Posted: February 21, 2019, 2:54 pm
Basingstoke, UK – February 21, 2019 - EditShare®, a technology leader in intelligent scale-out storage, AQC and media management solutions, today announced the release of Flow 2019 Extension 2. The software-defined media asset management (MAM) solution simplifies media sharing and collaboration ...

Data migration and new remote editing capabilities fuel large-scale media workflows

Basingstoke, UK – February 21, 2019 - EditShare®, a technology leader in intelligent scale-out storage, AQC and media management solutions, today announced the release of Flow 2019 Extension 2. The software-defined media asset management (MAM) solution simplifies media sharing and collaboration with embedded production tools to track, search, retrieve, and edit media across on-premise and cloud-based storage solutions.

With support for storage solutions from Avid, AWS, generic S3, Microsoft and StorageDNA, Flow 2019, connects users to millions of assets across diverse storage pools providing advanced automation capabilities to facilitate complex and redundant tasks.

“Flow 2019 Extension 2 brings the capabilities and scalability required by today’s fast-growing and fast-moving production facilities,” states Matt Sandford, Flow Product Manager, EditShare. “From floating licenses to offloading production tasks across multiple worker nodes to support for more third-party storage solutions, EditShare customers have more control and choices for optimizing their media operation and growing their business.”

New Feature Highlights of Flow 2019 Extension 2 include:

Networked Licensing with EditShare Licensing System (ELS)

Through the EditShare ELS licensing system, managers eliminate the need to keep track of individual Flow licenses. Users can freely move to the next available station and utilise a Flow license. Each license offers the latest updates and capabilities, making it easy to deploy Flow 2019 Extension 2 across large workgroups that have a continuous ebb and flow with regards to resources.

Offload Production Tasks Across Multiple Worker Nodes

Straight forward admin controls allow users to assign tasks such as media ingest and proxy creation to specific worker nodes simultaneously, offloading jobs across multiple worker node servers to accelerate the overall production workflow. Sandford elaborates, “With the ability to multi-assign ingest ports, facilities can improve the capture to edit process, speeding up the workflow tremendously.”

Time Saving Sequence Creation in Flow Story

Flow 2019 Extension 2 lets users create a sequence based on Flow Story Ranged Marker metadata. Extremely useful in fast turnaround scenarios, sequences can be generated, published and shared with only a couple of clicks. Fast and easy, users search the Flow Story Marker panel for the metadata they want to be included in the sequence and right click to make a sequence.

Added support for data migration between systems

This allows users to move their existing data from an older server to a newer one or a replacement one (should the need arise). Sandford explains, “Imagine a scenario where users have set up Flow but have outgrown the hardware limitations, you don't want to have to start over when moving to a more powerful system. This feature allows users to migrate all their data over quickly and easily. It’s all about being able to easily adapt and grow.”

Flow Pricing and Availability

EditShare Flow is available today in three packages: Basic, Advanced and Enterprise. Volume pricing is also available. Users can test-drive Flow by downloading a free 14-day trial at: my.editshare.com.

For more information, visit flow.editshare.com or please contact sales@editshare.com.

About EditShare

EditShare is a technology leader in networked shared storage and tapeless, end-to-end workflow solutions for the post-production, TV, and film industries. Our ground-breaking products improve efficiency and workflow collaboration every step of the way. They include video capture and playout servers, high-performance central shared storage, AQC, archiving and backup software, media asset management, and Lightworks – the world’s first 3-platform (Windows/OS X/Linux) professional non-linear video editing application.

©2019 EditShare LLC. All rights reserved. EditShare® is a registered trademark of EditShare.

Press Contact

Alex Molina

Zazil Media Group

Email: alex@zazilmediagroup.com

Tel: +1 (617) 834-9600

###

Author: Nick Govoni
Posted: February 21, 2019, 2:30 pm
Nielsen said that after acquiring Sorenson Media, it is launching Nielsen Advanced Video Advertising, an initiative that will at first focus on delivering addressable advertising to smart TVs. With many companies now providing bits and pieces of the data and technology needed to deliver addressable ...

New product focuses on Smart TVs

Nielsen said that after acquiring Sorenson Media, it is launching Nielsen Advanced Video Advertising, an initiative that will at first focus on delivering addressable advertising to smart TVs.

With many companies now providing bits and pieces of the data and technology needed to deliver addressable advertising, Nielsen said it is now uniquely positioned to tie all the elements together at scale between Sorenson’s technology and the automated content recognition capabilities of its Gracenote unit.

“It’s clear that a significant portion of TV advertising will be addressable long into the future,” said David Kenny, CEO of Nielsen. “With the continued evolution of our Total Audience measurement, underpinned by decades of trust, transparency and independence, it was evident that we needed to bring our unique set of technology assets and talent to tackle the greatest challenges the TV advertising industry is facing. And with the Sorenson Media acquisition, we can create improved value and efficiency across the entire media chain - from ad targeting and delivery to measurement and attribution - and make addressable TV more of a reality."

The ad business is moving away from the traditional demographic ratings Nielsen has long provided. And while the industry has pushed Nielsen to measure media consumption on new platforms and devices, the company has been investing in technology it says will make it indispensable in a world where advertising is targeted to more specific and strategic audiences.

Nielsen said it is now able to use it experience in TV measurement to ensure that every addressable TV ad is transacted in a way that is transparent and optimized in terms of its value to the TV industry.

Kelly Abcarian

“We are excited to partner with others in the industry to make addressability a reality,” said Kelly Abcarian, general manager of Nielsen’s Advanced Video Advertising Group. “Nielsen has the experience and technology to help expand a scalable industry-wide, end-to-end addressable TV advertising solution. And, we can provide a measurement solution that innovates on current approaches with a bridge to the future.”

Nielsen previously has announced being able to target audiences using smart TV data in the Nielsen Marketing Cloud. It also launched a five-market addressable TV pilot test with two smart TV makers and networks including CBS, A+E Networks and AMC Networks.

Sorenson’s technology will be added to the next phase of the pilot program, along with additional programmers, Nielsen said.

Nielsen, under pressure from shareholders, is in the middle of a strategic review that could result in some or all of its businesses being sold.

Author: Jon Lafayette
Posted: February 21, 2019, 2:02 pm
Connected TV ad impressions grew to 44% of all video impressions served by Extreme Reach in the fourth quarter of 2018 from 15% a year ago, a 193% jump, according to a new report. The share of 30-second ads delivered by Extreme Reach’s AdBridge continued to grow. In the first quarter, 30-second ...

Connected TV ad impressions grew to 44% of all video impressions served by Extreme Reach in the fourth quarter of 2018 from 15% a year ago, a 193% jump, according to a new report.

The share of 30-second ads delivered by Extreme Reach’s AdBridge continued to grow. In the first quarter, 30-second spots represented 58% of ad served. Their share has increased quarter by quarter since a year ago, when they represented just 28% of all ads. The growing prevalence of TV-like 30-second ads coincides with the growth of lean-back viewing on connected TVs.

Also on the rise was the video completion rate, which measured how many ad impressions were viewed all the way through. The video completion rate 87% in the fourth quarter, up 27.9% from a year ago.

The 30-second ads had a higher completion rate than short spots. The video completion rate for 30s was 89%, compared to 83% for 15s and 86% for six-second ads.

On connected TVs, the completion rate was a whopping 95%. On mobile just 77% of ads were competed.

The amount of invalid traffic was down 40.7% from a year ago and viewability was up 11.7%..

“TV viewers’ enthusiastic embrace of connected TV platforms is having a transformative effect on the entire video advertising ecosystem. Over the last few years, consumer adoption of CTV has soared to about 190 million users and shows no signs of stopping,” Extreme Reach said in its report.

“To keep up with the 57% of the population that has migrated from linear TV to, say, Roku or Apple TV or ad-supported streaming services, advertisers have followed suit—albeit cautiously at first,” the report said. “It’s clear from our video ad serving data that CTV investments are having an outside impact on advertisers’ ability to connect and engage with hard-to-reach audiences.”

Author: Jon Lafayette
Posted: February 21, 2019, 2:01 pm
The number of consumers getting their video programming from over-the-top subscriptions only will grow over the next five year to more than 15.5 million subscribers by 2024, according to a new report from Concentric, a simulation software company. Driving the growth of OTT will be live sports and ...

Concentric sees live streaming programming driving growth

The number of consumers getting their video programming from over-the-top subscriptions only will grow over the next five year to more than 15.5 million subscribers by 2024, according to a new report from Concentric, a simulation software company.

Driving the growth of OTT will be live sports and other live programming, followed by news, the report said. If OTT providers manage to integrate live content into their offering, one in four people will cut the cord with traditional pay-TV by 2024. With current content offerings, about 13% of viewers will cut the cord in the next five years.

Concentric expects cable to decline by between 2% and 14% depending on how quickly they incorporate streaming options into their offerings. To compete in the new environment, cable will have to offer lower prices, more customized packages and improved ease of use.

Satellite is on the decline and Concentric estimate its will lose another 8% of its subscribers in the next five years.

“As the popularity of streaming services continues to grow over the next five years and beyond, it seems clear that OTT services is where the industry is headed. OTT providers alone are both growing at a rapid clip, and bolstering the success of the other services they’re bundled with,” the report said.

The report notes that things are not that bleak for cable. Cable enjoys a huge market share and that share is too big to be challenged by OTT only over the next five years. Cable and other traditional providers can be successful by implementing streaming options, it said.

“In fact, all types of companies stand to gain from the growth of OTT services if they can combine them with a better user experience," Concentric said. "Whether it’s creating more-competitive pricing structures or more-desirable content, the data shows that consumers will follow the best service. Even technology companies like Roku, Apple, and other smart TV manufacturers have a role to play in this transition if they unify the content and improve the ease of use in accessing that content. Ultimately, the players that move quickly to respond to the needs and wants of the consumers will avoid stagnation and a slow decline into obscurity.” 

Concentric’s estimates are based on a simulation of consumer choices among alternatives for viewing entertainment content. It used industry data, a consumer survey of 1,000 consumers and its own industry knowledge to build its simulation.

Author: Jon Lafayette
Posted: February 21, 2019, 2:00 pm
Jussie Smollett is under arrest and facing felony charges for allegedly falsifying police report, according to Tom Ahern, deputy director of news affairs and communications for the Chicago Police Department. Chicago police said Smollett staged the attack over an Empire salary dispute and rehearsed ...

Faces charges carrying up to three-year prison term

Jussie Smollett is under arrest and facing felony charges for allegedly falsifying police report, according to Tom Ahern, deputy director of news affairs and communications for the Chicago Police Department.

Chicago police said Smollett staged the attack over an Empire salary dispute and rehearsed it with his attackers beforehand.

CNN reported after Smollett had appeared in court Thursday (Feb. 21) and made bail—which was set at $100,000—that his attorneys plan to mount a vigorous defense.

Ahern tweeted the news early Thursday after the Cook County State's Attorney's Office charged the Empire actor late Wednesday, only hours after he had been named a suspect.


Smollett had said he was the subject of a racially motivated attack, prompting calls for FBI investigations and shows of support from within and without the Hollywood community.

The President tweeted about the arrest—Smollett had said his racist attackers had said, threateningly, that this was "MAGA [Make America Great Again] country."

Author: John Eggerton
Posted: February 21, 2019, 1:38 pm
Turner Sports said it is promoting Howard Mittman to CEO of Bleacher Report. Mittman, who had been chief revenue officer and chief marketing officer, will report to Bleacher Report CEO of founder Dave Finocchio until Finocchio leaves the company in June. After that, Mittman will report to Matt ...

Exec replaces founder Finocchio, who is leaving in June

Turner Sports said it is promoting Howard Mittman to CEO of Bleacher Report.

Howard MIttman

Mittman, who had been chief revenue officer and chief marketing officer, will report to Bleacher Report CEO of founder Dave Finocchio until Finocchio leaves the company in June. After that, Mittman will report to Matt Hong, COO, Turner Sports.

“Howard has a wealth of industry experience to match his creativity, innovative thinking and unwavering passion for the Bleacher Report brand,” said Hong. “We’re confident in his abilities to lead the rapidly growing B/R business, and the talented team of people who work on B/R and House of Highlights every day, as we further deepen our connection with sports fans and create new experiences centered on the vibrant intersection of sports and culture.”

Mittman joined B/R in 2017 and has been in charge of revenue generation and marketing strategy. Before that he was chief business officer of Conde Nast’s men’s group. Previously he’d been with Popular Science, New York magazine, Mutual Funds, Financial Planning magazine and Sanford C. Bernstein.

“It was Dave Finocchio’s passion for identifying unmet needs of sports fans, and then delivering them the most relevant content to meet those interests, that originally drew me to Bleacher Report. And, today, it is B/R’s powerful relationship between sports and culture that resonates and inspires all of us, including our ever-expanding community of millennial and Gen Z fans,” said Mittman. “I’m equally excited and humbled to assume this role and I cannot thank Dave enough for building this incredible brand into what it is today. My goal is to continue honoring his vision as we further evolve its presence and elevate the brand to even greater heights.”

Bleacher Report was launched in 2007 by Finocchio and three high-school friends and sports fans. It was acquired by Turner, now a division of AT&T, in 2012 for $175 million. Finocchio has been CEO since 2013.

“I’m incredibly grateful to the many, many people who’ve helped make B/R so successful, going back to our humble beginnings,” said Finocchio. “This has been the experience of a lifetime, and I believe the work we put in over the past few years, in particular, helps set B/R up for great future success. I will continue rooting hard for Howard and the entire team.”

Author: Jon Lafayette
Posted: February 21, 2019, 4:17 am
The Cook County State's Attorney's Office Wednesday approved felony charges against Empire star Jussie Smollett for filing a false police report and disorderly conduct. Chicago Police Department Chief Communications Officer Anthony Guglielmi shared on Twitter. The charges, which came hours after ...

Cook County State's Attorney's Office also charges actor with disorderly conduct

The Cook County State's Attorney's Office Wednesday approved felony charges against Empire star Jussie Smollett for filing a false police report and disorderly conduct.

Chicago Police Department Chief Communications Officer Anthony Guglielmi shared on Twitter.

The charges, which came hours after the Chicago P.D. officially named Smollett a suspect, stem from a report Smollett filed on Jan. 29 that alleged he had been attacked by two men, who yelled homophobic and racial slurs at the actor and singer. 

Author: B&C Staff
Posted: February 21, 2019, 1:22 am
Charter Communications said it plans to launch an over-the-top streaming video service at the end of March dubbed TV Essentials to its broadband-only customers without a video service, in the cable industry’s latest effort to recapture pay TV subscribers. TV Essentials will be available to Charter ...

$14.99/month 'TV Essentials' to debut in March, include 60+ TV channels, on-demand content

Charter Communications said it plans to launch an over-the-top streaming video service at the end of March dubbed TV Essentials to its broadband-only customers without a video service, in the cable industry’s latest effort to recapture pay TV subscribers.

TV Essentials will be available to Charter broadband customers for $14.99 per month and will include about 60 live TV channels and on-demand content from programmers like Viacom, AMC Networks, A+E Networks, Discovery and Hallmark. The service will be essentially sports-free, concentrating on entertainment and news programming. In addition to several entertainment networks like MTV and Viceland, Charter's Spectrum News will also be a part of the lineup in New York; Los Angeles; Tampa, Fla.; Charlotte, N.C.; Orlando, Fla.; and other markets. Beginning in May, content from Spectrum Originals — Charter’s original programming arm — will become available to all Spectrum TV Essentials subscribers.

TV Essentials comes weeks after Comcast said it is developing a direct-to-consumer streaming platform using its newly acquired Sky plc’s NOW TV technology in North America and Europe.

Related: WarnerMedia SVOD Service Will Soft Launch in Fourth Quarter 2019

AT&T, which already has streaming service DirecTV Now and a lower-cost sports-free service AT&T Watch, is planning a direct-to-consumer offering later this year. And then there are the existing streaming services like Sling TV, Hulu with Live TV, Sony PlayStation Vue, fubo TV, YouTube TV, Philo TV and others.

"Spectrum TV Essentials is an OTT offering designed to provide Spectrum Internet-only customers a new low-price, high-value video option," Charter chairman and CEO Tom Rutledge said in a press release. "As we began to assemble the rights for this new video service, we received great enthusiasm and encouragement from these key programming partners, who share our view and embrace creating an innovative video offering we believe will resonate with our internet customers.

“Notably, Viacom shared its strong belief and research that suggests there is a large untapped opportunity for a low-priced, entertainment-only bundle unencumbered by the high cost of broadcast retransmission consent fees and expensive sports programming," Rutledge continued.

According to Charter, the TV Essentials product will be available through its Spectrum TV app on all supported mobile and connected devices – iOS and Android phones and tablets, Apple TV, Roku, Xbox One, Amazon Kindle Fire, Samsung Smart TVs and computers via SpectrumTV.com.

Customers will be able to browse shows and movies by category or network, aggregate a "Watch List" of favorite content, set parental controls and in the coming months, Charter plans to introduce a Cloud DVR service on the app.

"We’re thrilled to expand and deepen our relationship with Charter,” said Viacom CEO Bob Bakish in a press release. “They share both our commitment to the evolution of the Pay TV ecosystem as well as our understanding of the changing needs of consumers. As the video marketplace continues to segment across price points and offerings, we believe a high quality, lower priced option for internet-only subscribers is very important. We’re excited to have our global brands as part of Spectrum TV Essentials at launch."

Networks available on Spectrum TV Essentials include: A&E, AMC, American Heroes Channel, Animal Planet, AXS TV, BBC America, BBC World News, BET, BET Her, BET Jams, BET Soul, Bloomberg, Cheddar, CLEO TV, CMT, CMT Music, Comedy Central, Cooking Channel, Destination America, Discovery, Discovery Family, Discovery Life, DIY, Food Network, FYI, Game Show Network, Hallmark Channel, Hallmark Drama, Hallmark Movies & Mysteries, HDNet Movies, HGTV, HISTORY, IFC, Investigation Discovery, Lifetime, Lifetime Movie Network, Logo, MotorTrend Network, MTV, MTV2, MTV Classic, MTV Live, MTVU, NewsmaxTV, Newsy, Nickelodeon, Nick Jr., Nick Music, NickToons, Outdoor Channel, OWN, Paramount Network, Science Channel, Sundance TV, Teen Nick, TLC, Travel Channel, TV Land, VH1, Viceland, The Weather Channel and WEtv. 

Author: Michael Farrell
Posted: February 21, 2019, 12:47 am
LOS ANGELES — Feb. 20, 2019 — Litepanels' Gemini 2x1 Soft LED panel is the behind-the-scenes star of the U.K.'s popular "Dancing on Ice" (DOI) program, currently airing its 11th series on ITV. For the latest series, the show's producers turned to an innovative new lighting strategy — 40 Gemini ...

Litepanels' Gemini 2x1 Soft LED panel is the behind-the-scenes star of the U.K.'s popular "Dancing on Ice" (DOI) program, currently airing its 11th series on ITV. For the latest series, the show's producers turned to an innovative new lighting strategy — 40 Gemini panels mounted on five towers around the on-set ice rink.

LOS ANGELES — Feb. 20, 2019 — Litepanels' Gemini 2x1 Soft LED panel is the behind-the-scenes star of the U.K.'s popular "Dancing on Ice" (DOI) program, currently airing its 11th series on ITV. For the latest series, the show's producers turned to an innovative new lighting strategy — 40 Gemini panels mounted on five towers around the on-set ice rink.

DOI features celebrities and their professional partners figure skating competitively in front of an all-star judging panel. The 11th series premiered in early January with contestants ranging from actors and reality TV stars to musicians and athletes. Controlled with a remote lighting console, the Geminis provide outstanding color accuracy and the flexibility to apply different effects and intensities in an instant.

"I've been a satisfied Litepanels customer for a long time, and I still have quite a few earlier-generation Litepanels LEDs in my kit. Litepanels was the first company to come out with a 1x1 panel with consistent broadcast-quality color rendition, and they've really raised the bar on 2x1 panels with Gemini," said Roger Laxon, "Dancing on Ice" director of photography. "For DOI, we knew the Geminis would be perfect for helping us execute on our new creative vision in a way that could meet our extremely tight timeframe and budget."

Laxon and DOI producer Sam Rees-Jones enlisted gaffer Daf Cook to help them turn their vision for the tower-mounted Geminis into reality. Cook then contacted Nick Edwards, managing director of Version 2, a UK-based rental house that had recently added a large quantity of Gemini 2x1 Soft LEDs to its inventory. Version 2 supplied a complete lighting and rigging package, including 40 Gemini 2x1 Soft LED panels.

The ingenious lighting design includes five towers with eight stacked Gemini LED panels on each tower. Cook is able to control the lights' colors, intensity, and effects using a HedgeHog 4X console from High End Systems. This makes it easy to adapt the lighting from show to show as required by Laxon and director Dave Sutton.

"The light towers were a fairly big departure from our traditional approach to lighting DOI, but everyone on the production has been really pleased with the result. The Geminis have performed perfectly, and we really appreciate the support we have received from Nick and Version 2 in providing a one-stop shop for the lights," Cook said. "Any other 2x1 LED would have required a lot more structural rigging for this configuration. But the Geminis are ideal because of their light weight and their built-in power supply, which made them much easier to rig high up on the towers."

Laxon added, "The Gemini's gel, HSI, and CCT modes mean we can dial in any color we like without having to apply gels to the lights physically. In an instant, Daf can fine-tune the intensity of the colors to get the exact effect we're going for, and in a hue that looks best on screen. There's no way we would have had this kind of flexibility using gels."

Byron Brown, product manager, Litepanels, commented, "Speed is always critical on any production, and Gemini is the complete package: a soft light that can be rigged extremely fast and in many different and complex configurations, but also provides outstanding and consistent color accuracy for any type of film or video project. The new season of DOI is a great example, and we're very proud that Gemini is playing such an innovative role."

# # #

A Snapshot of Litepanels

Litepanels, a Vitec Group brand, was founded in 2001 by five professional gaffers and engineers who saw the future and pioneered LED lighting for motion pictures, television, and the audio-visual industry. Their Emmy® award-winning technology has now been used on thousands of productions worldwide and is trusted by the world's leading broadcast organizations. Litepanels continues to expand its suite of flicker-free, color-accurate, fully dimmable soft lights that talent and lighting directors admire. These environmentally friendly panels can pay for themselves with power savings and long life, setting a new standard in professional lighting. More information can be found at Litepanels.com.

All trademarks appearing herein are the property of their respective owners.

Link to Word Doc: www.wallstcom.com/TheVitecGroup/190220Litepanels.docx

Link to Photos: www.wallstcom.com/TheVitecGroup/Litepanels-Gemini-Dancing-on-Ice-Images.zip 

Photo Caption: Behind the scenes of the U.K.'s popular Dancing on Ice program. Photo(s) Courtesy of ITV.

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Author: Dundee Hills Group
Posted: February 20, 2019, 11:41 pm
A specialist in motion compensated frame rate conversion, InSync Technology will demonstrate the superior-quality conversion available from its FrameFormer software. FrameFormer is ideal for situations where content assets aren't in the format or frame rate needed for an application, such as in ...

At the 2019 NAB Show, InSync will announce availability of the new FrameFormer plug-in for Adobe Premiere Pro for macOS. This addition to the range provides further flexibility and options for deploying FrameFormer.

A specialist in motion compensated frame rate conversion, InSync Technology will demonstrate the superior-quality conversion available from its FrameFormer software. FrameFormer is ideal for situations where content assets aren't in the format or frame rate needed for an application, such as in international content distribution or repurposing of material for new projects.

At the 2019 NAB Show, InSync will announce availability of the new FrameFormer plug-in for Adobe Premiere Pro for macOS. This addition to the range provides further flexibility and options for deploying FrameFormer.

For those who want to dig deeper into the technology, InSync will present two papers at the Broadcast Engineering Information Technology Conference (BEITC) which runs alongside the 2019 NAB Show. One paper will discuss intelligent standards conversion, and the other will discuss methods for HDR conversion.

 

New FrameFormer for Adobe Premiere Pro Mac Integration 

At the 2019 NAB Show, InSync will announce a new plug-in version of FrameFormer for Adobe Premiere Pro macOS. Adding to the already popular FrameFormer Windows plug-in for Adobe Premiere Pro, the new Mac version enables simple and repeatable repurposing of material for international distribution, reformatting of movies for TV broadcast, and conversion of assets for web and mobile delivery, all in the high quality required in today's competitive content markets.

Visitors can book demos by emailing enquiries@insync.tv or just drop in at SL7412.

Photo Link: www.wallstcom.com/InSync/InSync-FrameFormerScreenshot.jpg

Photo Caption: FrameFormer User Interface for Adobe Premiere Pro Mac Version

 

InSync FrameFormer Conversions Demonstration

On InSync Booth SL7412 at the 2019 NAB Show, visitors will see results of the FrameFormer software motion compensated standards converter converting a variety of UHD content between different frame rates. The demonstrations will allow customers to see up close the superb quality available with FrameFormer and its ability to handle a wide range of material, including content produced with High Dynamic Range (HDR).

InSync invites attendees to compare the UHD source with the FrameFormer conversion to verify the quality of conversion. The proof of a great standards converter is in its ability to handle high contrast, fast-moving, detailed content, the results of which InSync invites visitors to view.

Photo Link: www.wallstcom.com/InSync/InSync-Up-DownConversion.jpg

Photo Caption: Illustration of Up and Down Conversion (SD/HD/4K/8K)

 

InSync Presents at the BEITC 

InSync is presenting two papers at the Broadcast Engineering Information Technology Conference (BEITC), which runs alongside the 2019 NAB Show. Visitors are invited to top up their technical knowledge by attending these interesting and informative presentations.

• On Sunday, April 7, at 10:40 a.m. in Room N260E, Paola Hobson, Managing Director of InSync Technology, will discuss intelligent cloud-based standards conversion.

• On Wednesday, April 10, at 9 a.m. in Room N260, James Shepherd, Chief Technology Officer at InSync Technology, will present a paper on 3D LUT interpolation for HDR conversions.

Photo Link: www.wallstcom.com/InSync/InSync-IntelligentConversion.jpg

Photo Caption: Intelligent Conversion Customer Example

 

Company Quote:

"InSync has recently expanded our team to include Daryl Blair as Product Manager. Daryl has many years of experience in the broadcast industry, including senior roles at Sony Broadcast and Red Bee Media. Daryl is an expert in media processing and delivery chains, and welcomes NAB visitors to discuss integration of FrameFormer into their preferred workflow."

— Paola Hobson, Managing Director, InSync Technology Ltd.

Company Overview:

InSync Technology is a successful and growing employee-owned business. Since its inception in 2003, InSync has specialized in developing highly efficient signal processing hardware and software products, with a focus on motion compensated frame rate and format conversion (standards converters).

InSync's FrameFormer software standards converter is the only motion compensated frame rate converter designed for CPU deployment. FrameFormer offers unique flexibility in support for Windows, Linux, and Mac operating systems and is available in a variety of plug-ins for popular edit software (such as Final Cut Pro X and Adobe Premiere Pro), as an integration into third-party solutions (such as the Imagine Communications' Zenium framework, Dalet Amberfin, Odyssey MARK, and Marquise Technologies' MIST), as a pay-per-use service (via partner Hiscale), or as stand-alone software for integration into a bespoke workflow.

More information is available at www.insync.tv.

Product or service names mentioned herein are the trademarks of their respective owners.

Link to Word Doc: www.wallstcom.com/InSync/190220InSync.docx

2019 NAB Show Product Preview

InSync Technology Ltd.

Booth SL7412

April 8-11

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Author: Dundee Hills Group
Posted: February 20, 2019, 11:19 pm
At the 2019 NAB Show, Black Box will showcase products across its high-performance Emerald™ unified KVM (keyboard, mouse, video) portfolio and will unveil a new offering that enables even greater flexibility in establishing agile remote desktop connectivity. The Black Box booth, SL12716, will ...

At the 2019 NAB Show, Black Box will showcase products across its high-performance Emerald™ unified KVM (keyboard, mouse, video) portfolio and will unveil a new offering that enables even greater flexibility in establishing agile remote desktop connectivity. The Black Box booth, SL12716, will feature demo areas dedicated to Emerald KVM solutions that address the need for convenient and intuitive real-time access to multiple computers from multiple locations, whether across rooms, floors, buildings, sites, or even cities. Black Box offers consultation and design services along with every solution delivered, and the company's representatives at the 2019 NAB Show will highlight complete IP-based and 4K AV visualization and distribution solutions tailored to the unique requirements of modern control rooms, post and media productions, and broadcast playout environments.

At the 2019 NAB Show, Black Box will showcase products across its high-performance Emerald™ unified KVM (keyboard, mouse, video) portfolio and will unveil a new offering that enables even greater flexibility in establishing agile remote desktop connectivity. The Black Box booth, SL12716, will feature demo areas dedicated to Emerald KVM solutions that address the need for convenient and intuitive real-time access to multiple computers from multiple locations, whether across rooms, floors, buildings, sites, or even cities. Black Box offers consultation and design services along with every solution delivered, and the company's representatives at the 2019 NAB Show will highlight complete IP-based and 4K AV visualization and distribution solutions tailored to the unique requirements of modern control rooms, post and media productions, and broadcast playout environments.

Emerald™ Unified KVM-over-IP Platform

Developed and manufactured by the Black Box team in Ireland, the Emerald™ KVM-over-IP product family provides the high degree of flexibility and network security essential to state-of-the-art KVM extension and switching. At the 2019 NAB Show, Black Box will feature the Emerald 4K and Emerald SE transmitter-receiver pairs for connecting users at their workstations with remote computers and servers across distances up to 10 km over single-mode fiber, or even farther over IP. With more capabilities than other KVM solutions currently on the market, Emerald delivers superior value by lowering the cost of ownership and helping to extend the life of existing IT investments. The award-winning Emerald 4K delivers pixel-perfect HD or 4K video over an IP network with support for mixed resolutions. It allows reliable extension and switching of video (DisplayPort or DVI), transparent USB 2.0, and bidirectional analog audio and serial signals across any combination and number of physical and virtual servers. Emerald SE units give users an economical point of entry into KVM-over-IP and support a measured, cost-effective migration to enterprise KVM matrix switching through a simple software license upgrade. In addition, as operations expand, Emerald allows users to scale up by simply adding endpoints.

Photo Link: www.wallstcom.com/BlackBox/BlackBox-Emerald_4KReceiver.png

Photo Caption: The Emerald product family provides a high degree of flexibility and network security essential to state-of-the-art KVM extension and switching.

 

Boxilla™ KVM and AV IT System Manager

At the 2019 NAB Show, Black Box will demonstrate how its Boxilla™ enterprise-level KVM manager is changing the way businesses deploy, configure, monitor, and manage equipment on their networks. Integrated with solutions such as the Black Box Emerald KVM-over-IP platform, Boxilla provides an intuitive interface for monitoring system performance, configuring proactive security alerts, checking on real-time device status, and identifying active devices, connections, and users, as well as their current bandwidth usage. Offering a precise view of network bandwidth, Boxilla also provides at-a-glance access to dropped frames, round-trip time, and other critical system and device data.

 Radian Flex™ Software-Based Video Wall Processing Platform

Radian Flex™ is a software-based video wall processing platform that delivers the future-proof flexibility and scalability essential in digital signage, corporate, education, and mission-critical visualization applications. The intuitive software from Black Box makes it easy to display high-quality content from multiple sources across multi-screen video walls in any imaginable configuration. Users simply add, move, resize, and change content on the Radian Flex interface, and those changes are reflected in real time on the target video wall, distributed visualization system, or other display devices. Radian Flex supports an unlimited number of inputs, screens, and endpoints and limitless resolution. Users can easily daisy-chain monitors to display hundreds of H.264 and VNC video streams across multiple screens. Integrated SmartFrame technology ensures perfect picture quality and automates optimal placement of content on screen with minimal setup. The platform's robust video engine supports 4K 60fps video up to an industry-leading resolution of more than one billion pixels, paving the way for higher resolutions.

Photo Link: www.wallstcom.com/BlackBox/BlackBox-RadianFlex.png

Photo Caption: Radian Flex™ is a fully software-based video wall processing platform that delivers future-proof flexibility and scalability.

Black Box Control Bridge™ Multisystem and Room Control

Control Bridge™ is a complete multisystem and room control system for control rooms and building automation. Using a single touch panel to control KVM, AV, and other in-room devices, users can program room temperature, control video wall solutions, turn lights on and off remotely, or launch a preset room configuration with the touch of a button to prepare a room for a presentation.

 

Company Overview:

Black Box delivers award-winning products and services that simplify signal management and distribution in IT and communication systems. We engineer and manufacture KVM and audio/video systems that connect users with PCs and servers, desktops and peripherals, ensuring smart, flexible access to critical IT assets, data, and content. For government, education, and commercial organizations of all sizes, we design and supply secure infrastructure solutions for control rooms, conference and collaboration facilities, and digital signage. With four decades of experience, as well as a global presence and an extensive team of technical experts, we provide the products, solutions, service, and support that allow our clients to connect with their colleagues, their customers, and the world.

To learn more, visit the Black Box website at https://www.blackbox.com and follow us on Twitter @blackbox_ns.

Black Box® and the Double Diamond logo are registered trademarks of BB Technologies Inc.

Link to Word Doc: www.wallstcom.com/BlackBox/190219BlackBox.docx

2019 NAB Show Product Preview

April 6-11

Black Box 

Booth SL12716

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Author: Dundee Hills Group
Posted: February 20, 2019, 10:51 pm
Grass Valley, CA (February 19, 2019) — Grass Valley, CA (February 19, 2019) — AJA Video Systems today announced that post production software developer SGO has integrated AJA KONA 5 audio and video I/O cards into its full finishing and workflow solution Mistika Ultima, providing simplified and ...

12G-SDI audio and video I/O cards streamline 8K capture and playout with Mistika Ultima 8K Systems for live broadcast clients

Grass Valley, CA (February 19, 2019) Grass Valley, CA (February 19, 2019) AJA Video Systems today announced that post production software developer SGO has integrated AJA KONA 5 audio and video I/O cards into its full finishing and workflow solution Mistika Ultima, providing simplified and optimized 8K production for broadcast clients. 

Already deployed for live 8K broadcasts in Asia, the new Mistika Ultima 8K System provides a real-time finishing workflow for 8K Full UHD at 60p, even with uncompressed formats. It comprises an AJA KONA 5 card with 12G-SDI I/O connectivity, Mistika Ultima software, an HP Z8 workstation, a high performance SGO storage solution and other industry-standard hardware.

"We are delighted that broadcasters and other facilities in Japan have embraced Mistika Technology to produce content all the way up to 8K," explains Shinpei Takoshima, Senior Systems Engineer at Kyoshin Communications. "Our clients using the latest Mistika Ultima 8K System with the new AJA KONA 5 are aware that deploying this technology puts them at the forefront of production and that dependable and high performing solutions like the KONA 5 are a must."

“8K production is complex and demanding, so we strive to equip our customers with the best technology out there; KONA 5 meets this requirement and was a natural choice for our Mistika Ultima 8K system. The card is durable and versatile, and its four 12G-SDI ports minimize cabling,” shared Geoff Mills, Managing Director at SGO. “We’ve been thoroughly impressed by the support that AJA’s development team has provided us to achieve a new 8K workflow and look forward to integrating KONA 5 cards across our complete line of finishing systems.”

KONA 5 is a high-performance 8-lane PCIe 3.0 capture and output card featuring 12G-SDI I/O and HDMI 2.0 output. For OEM partners, the card is supported on AJA’s SDK for macOS, Windows and Linux, offering advanced features such as 8K and multi-channel 4K. KONA 5 is also compatible with creative tools such as Adobe Premiere Pro, Apple Final Cut Pro X, and Avid Media Composer, via AJA’s proven macOS and Windows drivers and application plug-ins. KONA 5 enables simultaneous capture with signal pass through when using 12G-SDI, and offers HDMI 2.0 output as well as deep-color and multi-format HDR support.

About AJA Video Systems, Inc.

Since 1993, AJA Video has been a leading manufacturer of video interface technologies, converters, digital video recording solutions and professional cameras, bringing high-quality, cost-effective products to the professional broadcast, video and post production markets. AJA products are designed and manufactured at our facilities in Grass Valley, California, and sold through an extensive sales channel of resellers and systems integrators around the world. For further information, please see our website at .

About SGO and Mistika Technology SGO is a Spanish high-end technology company with decades of experience in developing and integrating high-end post-production solutions. Their award-winning Mistika Ultima post-production Hero Suite has achieved market notoriety for developing customized post tools and workflows for many of the industry leaders all around the world. Built on years of research, development and production experience, Mistika Technology empowers users with new levels of creative power, performance, and efficiency in HDR, UHD/4K, 8K UHD, S3D, and VR workflows. Apart from software solutions, SGO provides their clients with extensive engineering expertise and knowledge. This combination creates personalized high-level workflow solutions, extracting all available processing from hardware and optimizing storage to achieve incredible performance.

All trademarks referenced herein belong to their respective companies.

Media Contact:

Karen Raz

Raz Public Relations, LLC

310-450-1482; karen@razpr.com

Author: Jump
Posted: February 20, 2019, 10:51 pm
The Chicago Police Department has named Jussie Smollett a suspect for filing a false police report. The announcement came Wednesday on the Chicago P.D.'s Facebook page and Chicago PD Chief Communications Officer Anthony Guglielmi's Twitter. Smollett, who stars in Fox's Empire, filed a report Jan. ...

'Empire' star alleged he was attacked in the Windy City in January

The Chicago Police Department has named Jussie Smollett a suspect for filing a false police report.

The announcement came Wednesday on the Chicago P.D.'s Facebook page and Chicago PD Chief Communications Officer Anthony Guglielmi's Twitter.

Smollett, who stars in Fox's Empire, filed a report Jan. 29 alleging that he was attacked by two people who yelled homophobic and racial slurs at him. In the report, he also alleged that the attackers strung a rope around his neck and threw a chemical substance on him.

The actor and singer's report came under scrutiny, however, during the police investigation after Nigerian brothers Olabinjo "Ola" Osundairo and Abimbola "Abel" Osundairo, who had connections to Smollett, were identified as the persons seen on security footage the night of the incident. The brothers were questioned and released without charges being filed.

Empire producers have stood by Smollett during the investigation, even amid reports that he had allegedly paid the brothers to stage the attack.

“Jussie Smollett continues to be a consummate professional on set and as we have previously stated, he is not being written out of the show,” 20th Century Fox Television and Fox Entertainment said Wednesday in a statement.

Author: Jessika Walsten
Posted: February 20, 2019, 10:47 pm
Investigative journalist Linda Sawyer (Mooney), an Emmy-awarded producer, died suddenly in Santa Monica, Calif., on Feb. 10 from surgical complications, according to her family. She was 57 years old. She had an esteemed career in journalism, working for networks such as MTV during its founding, ...

Journalist, 57, created and hosted 'Sleuth: True Crime in Real Time' podcast

Investigative journalist Linda Sawyer (Mooney), an Emmy-awarded producer, died suddenly in Santa Monica, Calif., on Feb. 10 from surgical complications, according to her family. She was 57 years old.

Linda Sawyer and her daughters (photos courtesy of Nila Sawyer).

She had an esteemed career in journalism, working for networks such as MTV during its founding, VH1 and HBO. Most recently, she created and hosted the podcast, Sleuth: True Crime in Real Time, which garnered over 2 million listeners on iHeart Radio. Before her passing, she had already begun work on a new case for Sleuth's season two.

Sawyer was born on Aug. 11, 1961, in Bronxville, N.Y., to William and Elaine (Bak) Mooney. She attended Clarkstown North High School in New City, N.Y., where she was an accomplished tennis player and continued her education at Hobart William Smith College in Geneva, N.Y., graduating in 1983 with a BA in Economics, her daughter Nila Sawyer said.

She is survived by the lights of her life, her twin daughters Niki and Nila Sawyer; her parents William and Elaine Mooney; her brother, William S. Mooney, his wife Akiko Yamada and niece Abigail.

A memorial service for Linda Sawyer will take place at the Riverside Memorial Chapel in New York City on Sunday, March 3, at 2:30 p.m. 

Author: Kent Gibbons
Posted: February 20, 2019, 10:03 pm
Hoboken, NJ; February 20, 2019 – OpenVault, a global provider of industry analytics and technology solutions for broadband operators, will not only be exhibiting and speaking at the upcoming NCTC Winter Educational Conference in Atlanta, GA, but also will be using the event to launch OV Cares, an ...

OV Cares to spearhead donations of travel-sized personal items for charity

Hoboken, NJ; February 20, 2019 – OpenVault, a global provider of industry analytics and technology solutions for broadband operators, will not only be exhibiting and speaking at the upcoming NCTC Winter Educational Conference in Atlanta, GA, but also will be using the event to launch OV Cares, an OpenVault-led initiative to help the needy in the surrounding community.

At the OpenVault booth (#707) at the February 25-26 WEC event, OV Cares will be collecting unused, travel-sized personal hygiene items to benefit the Jerusalem House, an organization that provides homeless and low-income individuals and families affected by HIV/AIDS in Greater Atlanta with a continuum of housing options, supportive services, and educational opportunities.

“As a company that works and travels around the world to provide broadband solutions for operators globally, we were struck by the collective value to non-profits and the needy of unused personal care items business travelers leave behind every day,” said Josh Barstow, executive vice president of Corporate Strategy and Business Development for OpenVault, “We’re encouraging WEC attendees to rally behind this cause and to make it a priority each day to deliver to our booth of any unused personal hygiene items.”

In addition to OV Cares, OpenVault’s presence at WEC also will include an exhibit of new technologies at its booth, as well as thought leadership insights from Mark Trudeau, the company’s CEO and founder. Trudeau will discuss ways to monetize data growth and create new revenue streams during the Bring the Blitz: Broadband Pricing and Packaging Plays that Work breakout session on Tuesday, February 26 from 2:50pm to 3:40pm in the International Ballroom, Level M2 of the North Tower of the Omni Hotel @ CNN Center. 

Author: Paul Schneider
Posted: February 20, 2019, 9:35 pm

GeoBroadcast Solutions adds a MaxxCasting licensee in Boston

The post WXLO Deploys SFN for Signal Improvement appeared first on Radio World.

 

News from the Radio World “Who’s Buying What” page:

Technology supplier GeoBroadcast Solutions said WXLO is using its MaxxCasting system to improve its FM footprint in the challenging broadcast environs of Boston and nearby.

The Cumulus station began using the system in January. The announcement was made by Cumulus Media Regional VP Bob Goodell and GeoBroadcast Solutions CTO Bill Hieatt.

The station has a hot AC format and serves Boston and Worcester. “WXLO’s newly robust FM signal is now reaching Nielsen Portable People Meters (PPM) and audiences throughout both markets, with approximately 1 million new listeners at home, in businesses and in automobiles receiving clear signals,” GBS stated in a press release. It highlighted improved reach through Boston in Suffolk County as well as heavily populated Middlesex County. The accompanying images were provided by GeoBroadcast Solutions, showing before and after. It said blue indicates the lowest level acceptable for monophonic reception; green is for stereo reception; yellow is very good in-building coverage and orange is good for portable (iPod-type) reception.

“The single-frequency network includes three low-power transmission sites, or ‘nodes,’ to maximize coverage for two markets, including a transmission node located on top of the John Hancock building in downtown Boston,” it said. The nodes are in areas prone to weak coverage, using predictive modeling software to eliminate interference where signals overlap and provide a clean transition as listeners move between transmitter coverages.

The manufacturer said this project solved problems that WXLO had with signal density, building penetration and difficult commuter routes. GBS also called this installation “the best-sounding MaxxCasting system to date” because of its integration of IP networking from GatesAir to support composite digital FM multiplex (MPX) signal transport. The system also has customized directional antenna patterns at each node to optimize propagation.

This is the second MaxxCasting system in Boston; indy WXRV also has one.

Radio World welcomes news for the Who’s Buying What column. Email radioworld@futurenet.com.

The post WXLO Deploys SFN for Signal Improvement appeared first on Radio World.

Author: Paul McLane
Posted: February 22, 2019, 7:46 pm

An audio processor can do wonders or great harm for a broadcast station

The post Audio Processing appeared first on Radio World.

This article is from a continuing education series published monthly by the Alabama Broadcasters Association Engineering Academy.

Do you know the answer to this question: What was the first audio processor ever used in broadcasting? Answer at the end of this article.

iStockphoto/anigoweb

Audio processing originally was used to comply with FCC regulations concerning over-modulation. However, through the years, processing has been used more often to “tailor” a station’s sound over the air. While this is not necessarily bad, if it not done properly one can easily do more harm than good to the station sound and listener retention. We all remember the “loudness war” of a few years ago.

Here are a few thoughts and suggestions from audio professionals around the country covering proper adjustment of audio processors.

  • Create a proper monitoring setup (room acoustics, speakers, placement, along with the ability to monitor on various types of speakers).

Frank Foti of The Telos Alliance says, “There should be a reference location that is used to monitor the station, and the performance of the processing system. While many in management choose the use of their cars, due to familiarity, these should be used as a secondary reference. The main location should be preferably at the station, use a quality monitor to capture a solid off-air signal, and it should be devoid of multipath. If possible, the tuner/monitor should be able to listen to competing and comparable signals, also without multipath.”

Remember that most listeners are not sitting in front of a theater sound system while listening to your station. It varies and includes car radios, laptop speakers, headphones and earbuds. While it is important to listen on a good speaker system when fine-tuning the processor, always have a way to listen on these other devices as well.

Don’t forget to check the audio in the mono mode. This will help check for any phasing issues. If your station is streaming over the Internet, it is a good idea to listen to how it sounds there as well. Normally you would have a different processor for the stream, so you may need to address that as well.

  • Check your source material. Make sure everything coming into the processor is the best it can be. There is no processor that can correct bad source audio. As a matter of fact, in the digital audio domain, if you feed bad audio into the processor, it will often come out even worse!

Check all the sources that you will be using over the air (locally generated files, different studios, network feeds, etc.). Correct gain staging throughout your plant is critical.

Doug Irwin, writing in Radio magazine, stated: “While adjustments to an audio processor can give a station consistency along with some other characteristics that makes it sound recognizable, in the end, better results are achieved if effort is put into having each element that makes up the program content sound as consistent as possible, before they go into an over-the-air processor.”

Create standards for proper levels in the production room, and make sure the production department follows those correctly. “Quality, not quantity” should be the goal.

Most stations have now moved from and analog to digital. Digital operates differently than analog. It would be a good idea to have a training session on the proper operation of the digital audio workstation (DAW) so that personnel understand the basics of digital audio.

Bob Katz, noted mastering engineer, said: “The reason digital doesn’t sound as good as it should is that most operators have not taken the time to ‘look under the hood’ at how digital works. As a result, they make fundamental mistakes that will compound and make your project inferior.”

  • Monitoring at a medium level. One needs to understand how the ear/brain operates and that it changes with different sound pressure levels (look at the Fletcher Munson curves). Also, it helps to listen at low levels, as the ear can decipher loudness differences between signals when listening at low to medium volume.

Talk with successful mixing engineers and they will all tell you that mixing at low levels allows you the hear how all the sounds blend together correctly. Too loud and the ear gets in the way.

  •  Take time to adjust. Don’t try to complete the adjustments in one day. Take rest for your ears, make small adjustments and save settings so you can A/B the changes.

A good practice is to listen for no longer than 20 minutes, then give your ears a rest. If listening for longer periods of time, the brain becomes desensitized, and the results can fool you into a belief that may not be actual.

Saving all your changes is important as it gives a way to determine if you are making improvements or going the wrong way by A/B comparisons.

It is most important to adjust correctly. Make small adjustment, one at a time. If you make too many adjustments at one time, you won’t know which one was good and which one was bad when you listen. Simply put, when fine-tuning the processor, make a single adjustment, then listen over a day on various sources. If it sounds better, you are going in the right direction; if not, you went the wrong way. Always A/B your adjustments!

  •  Try different presets (you may find another format that works best for your required sound). Just because a certain preset is listed as “Modern Country” doesn’t mean it can’t work for another format. It simply means this is an algorithm that seems to fit modern country based on listener tests. Experiment with different presets.

Modern processors have a lot of different things you can adjust, but just because you have them doesn’t mean you have to use them all. Most of the time, less is better. If the station sounds right, stop tinkering with the controls. Know when to stop.

  • Listen to your station intently. Check for level balance, overall quality and intelligibility from all sources. Listeners should be able to hear every nuance and word being broadcast. Sometimes, poor mixing in the production room will create a file where the important part, the vocal, gets lost. A client didn’t buy a spot schedule for the background music or effects.

Andrew Scheps, a well-known mixing engineer, once said: “It’s what comes out of the speaker that counts.” This is true in mixing studios as well as broadcast operations.

The question always comes up: Who should make the final decision as to how the station should sound? First, it should not be a committee — you will never satisfy everybody. Most engineers agree it is the program director and the chief engineer.

Frank Giardina, Cumulus chief engineer in Birmingham, said, “I usually meet with them and see what they are hearing and want to hear. Usually, I will have to translate their terminology. They will use terms such as sparkle, boom, mushy, jump out, etc. I will ask them to give me examples of songs, voices and stations that sound good and ones that sound bad.”

He added, “We will usually start with the factory presets. The ones on new processors are really good and provide a starting point. Once we start adjusting, I insist that we listen to the new adjustments for at least three or four days (unless it sounds terrible, at which point we go back to the starting point immediately). I also ask that they listen on various radios, and I will do the same. We will then get back together and see where things stand.”

An audio processor that has been set up correctly will do wonders for your station, but one that is set up wrong can be a negative in the station’s performance.

And the answer to the question, “What was the first processor ever used in a broadcast operation?” It was the audio engineer, sitting in front of the console … turning the level up when was to low and tuning it down when it was too loud.

Our thanks for their input to Frank Foti, Frank Giardina, Doug Irwin, Bob Katz, Bob Orban and Andrew Scheps.

Larry Wilkins, CPBE, is director of the ABA Engineering Academy in Birmingham, Ala., and was the 2017–18 recipient of the Radio World Excellence in Engineering Award.

The post Audio Processing appeared first on Radio World.

Author: Larry Wilkins
Posted: February 22, 2019, 5:33 pm

The chairman of the NRSC Metadata Usage Working Group explains recent changes

The post Update on NRSC RDS PI Codes appeared first on Radio World.

In 2017, the NRSC launched a new website for FM Translator RDS PI codes. We discussed this in detail in the Dec. 20, 2017 issue of Radio World and here.

At the 2018 Radio Show, the NRSC unveiled an updated website that also provides PI codes for full-service FM and LPFM stations in the United States that have four alphabetic characters (i.e. KAAA, WZZZ, etc.). The URL to access this site is still the same.

Now, visitors to the website are brought to a portal that asks what database the visitor wants to access. The translator and full-service databases are kept separate, as they are calculated differently. Historically, full-service FM stations have had to calculate their PI code using a formula in NRSC-4-B based on their assigned FCC call sign.

That formula only worked with four alphabetic characters call signs that begin with K or W. Translator call signs are structured differently and did not work with this formula. Also, due to the high concentration of translators and their comparatively smaller coverage areas, the translator calculation database must duplicate codes to avoid exhaustion, but does so to avoid geographic conflicts and ensures the assignments are RadioDNS-compliant.

It became apparent in our discussions regarding PI codes for FM translators that there was not an authoritative database for full-service stations. Many calculated their PI code manually by following the formula in the NRSC-4-B document.

The industry also resorted to various private websites or calculator programs over the years. These programs were helpful to get the industry pointed in the right direction, but they were not authoritative. Some versions of the calculation tools had errors in their calculations as well, and that caused a problem with conflicts in some instances. This new database helps alleviate these problems.

The NRSC worked again with NAB Pilot to expand the capabilities of the website to include these full-service stations. Just like the translator database, the full-power PI code assignments are processed daily and include anything new published in the FCC FM Database.

REPORT CHANGES

A new feature was added that allows both the full-service and translator stations to report what code may be in-use if it differs from the listed assignment. There are a few limited cases where this is possible. For instance, it’s possible when there is a 100 percent time-aligned simulcast of several signals to share the PI code to aide in Alternate Frequency (AF) switching between the stations.

Another situation that arises is where a station carries RDS TMC (Traffic Message Channel) in the United States to transmit traffic data to embedded navigation systems. These stations often need to set the first nibble of their PI code as 0x1 for compatibility with some RDS TMC capable receivers. Now, stations that transmit a PI code that is different than what is calculated or assigned by the NRSC have a mechanism to inform the NRSC and ultimately the rest of the broadcast industry what code is in use.

Alan Jurison is a senior operations engineer for iHeartMedia’s Engineering and Systems Integration Group. He chairs the NRSC Metadata Usage Working Group. His opinions are not necessarily those of iHeartMedia, the NRSC or Radio World.

The post Update on NRSC RDS PI Codes appeared first on Radio World.

Author: Alan Jurison
Posted: February 22, 2019, 1:28 pm

Fifty stations make shortlist for salute to community service

The post Finalists Named for NAB Crystal Radio Awards appeared first on Radio World.

The National Association of Broadcasters released the list of finalists its annual NAB Crystal Radio Awards, which honor stations for outstanding commitment to community service.

They are:

  • KBFB(FM) Dallas, Texas
  • KBHP(FM) Bemidji, Minn.
  • KCLY(FM) Clay Center, Kan.
  • KCVM(FM) Cedar Falls, Iowa
  • KEEY(FM) Minneapolis, Minn.
  • KHKS(FM) Dallas, Texas
  • KMVP(FM) Phoenix, Ariz.
  • KNDE(FM) College Station, Texas
  • KNIX(FM) Phoenix, Ariz.
  • KRMG(FM) Tulsa, Okla.
  • KRWM(FM) Seattle, Wash.
  • KSL(AM) Salt Lake City, Utah
  • KSNE(FM) Las Vegas, Nev.
  • KSTP(FM) St. Paul, Minn.
  • KTCZ(FM) Minneapolis, Minn.
  • KTMY(FM) St. Paul, Minn.
  • KUPL(FM) Portland, Ore.
  • KWBG(AM) Boone, Iowa
  • WBLS(FM) New York, N.Y.
  • WCCO(AM) Minneapolis, Minn.
  • WCFB(FM) Orlando, Fla.
  • WDNS(FM) Bowling Green, Ky.
  • WDSY(FM) Pittsburgh, Pa.
  • WDVE(FM) Pittsburgh, Pa.
  • WGTS(FM) Washington, D.C.
  • WHO(AM) Des Moines, Iowa
  • WHUB(AM) Cookeville, Tenn.
  • WHUR(FM) Washington, D.C.
  • WHYI(FM) Miami, Fla.
  • WIL(FM) St. Louis, Mo.
  • WJJY(FM) Baxter, Minn.
  • WKRQ(FM) Cincinnati, Ohio
  • WKST(FM) Pittsburgh, Pa.
  • WKXD(FM) Cookeville, Tenn.
  • WMBX(FM) West Palm Beach, Fla.
  • WMGK(FM) Philadelphia, Pa.
  • WOWI(FM) Norfolk, Va.
  • WPHT(AM) Philadelphia, Pa.
  • WQHT(FM) New York, N.Y.
  • WRAL(FM) Raleigh, N.C.
  • WRLT(FM) Nashville, Tenn.
  • WTAM(AM) Cleveland, Ohio
  • WTKX(FM) Mobile, Ala.
  • WTMJ(AM) Milwaukee, Wis.
  • WVLI(FM) Bourbonnais, Ill
  • WWOZ(FM) New Orleans, La.
  • WWPR(FM) New York, N.Y.
  • WXXL(FM) Orlando, Fla.
  • WYCT(FM) Pensacola, Fla.
  • WZTU(FM) Miami, Fla.

Ten winners will be announced during the NAB Show in April in Las Vegas.

Five-time recipient KFOR(AM) will receive the NAB Crystal Heritage Award.

 

The post Finalists Named for NAB Crystal Radio Awards appeared first on Radio World.

Author: Paul McLane
Posted: February 21, 2019, 6:56 pm

Here’s a brief tutorial on IPV4 addressing

The post Let’s Talk About the “Mask” appeared first on Radio World.

In recent days, I’ve had a couple of engineers express some confusion about the “mask” part of IP addressing. It is a little arcane, being sort of a bolt-on fix for limitations of the original dotted quad addressing scheme. The values seem not to have much to do with the actual IP “address” of a given device. But trust me, mask performs an essential role. Here’s a mildly wordy tutorial.

IN THE BEGINNING …

Once upon a time, the internet was small and there seemed to be no need to subdivide it into more than four layers of hierarchy. So, addresses were formed of four 8-bit values. Because typing 32 ones or zeros was tedious, the notation convention became ###.###.###.### with each ### being an integer between 0 and 255. It was roughly:

ENTITY [govt agency, college, etc.] (dot) LOCALITY [campus, military base, etc.] (dot) DEPARTMENT (dot) MACHINE

When the internet grew up a bit, it was obvious that four hard boundaries in the addressing scheme was just not workable. What if only a handful of machines need to talk to each other directly? The hard boundary wastes the remaining addresses since it assumes 254* machines. (See * box at the end of article.)

So the idea was abandoned in favor of a movable boundary between the “network” address and the “host” address. But the ###.###.###.### was already standardized, so it was kept. This was probably a mistake, but I suppose it’s too late to change it.

BEHIND THE MASK

The “mask” defines the boundary between the “network segment address” shared by multiple hosts and the “host address” on the particular larger network. Upstream routers look at the “segment” part and hand packets off to a switch at the interface associated with the “segment” to be read by the host device whose address completes the entire ###.###.###.### unique address assignment. Using this approach, it is now possible to create any size of segment, theoretically without wasting addresses.

Mask tells the host machine two things: What is my unique address number on the segment I am connected to, and where should I look for packets sent to all the machines on my segment? A wrong mask means the host will be looking for messages from its neighbors and from its upstream gateway in the wrong place. Coincidentally, network connectivity won’t work. From the location of the boundary between the string of ones to the left and zeros to the right in the binary representation of the mask, the machine knows where to put the divide. That’s why the possible values for each mask number in the ###.###.###.### are limited to the sum of powers of two.

255.255.255.128 turns on the leftmost bit and creates a subnet with 126* possible hosts. 255.255.255.192 (128+64=192) turns on the leftmost two bits and creates a subnet with 62* possible hosts. 255.255.255.224 (128+64+32=224) turns on the leftmost three bits and creates a subnet with 30* possible hosts and so on, down to 255.255.255.252, which turns on all but two bits and creates a network of 2* possible hosts. This is a network that connects two and only two devices.

0, 192, 224, 240, 248, 252 are the valid values for the rightmost mask number. 254 and 255 can be used in the others so as to create a binary that is all ones to the left and all zeros to the right. Why can’t 254 and 255 be used in the rightmost value? Because those create subnets with no host addresses at all. I use “segment” and “subnet” interchangeably here. A segment with 510* hosts can be created by a mask of 255.255.254.0 (all the bits in the rightmost byte plus the last bit in the next to last byte. The binary looks like:

11111111.11111111.11111110.00000000

The first address on this subnet might look like 10.100.0.1 and the last like 10.100.1.254. In the middle we’d find consecutive addresses of 10.100.0.255 and 10.100.1.0. This is just counting up the binary for the rightmost nine bits of the unique host address range. It could just as easily be 192.168.77.001 to 192.168.78.254.

The mask for a subnet with 4094 hosts might look like 255.255.240.0 with a binary representation of

11111111.11111111.11110000.00000000

That’s a big subnet!

There’s an alternative notation to the four dotted quads for the mask value which you may have seen. CIDR notation follows a complete host or network address with a /## where ## is the number of bits set to one in the binary representation of the mask. CIDR stands for Classless Inter-domain Routing. We abandoned the old A, B and C classes of internet addresses when the mask parameter was adopted.

Frank McCoy is chief engineer for Salem Media’s cluster in Chicago, what he describes as his “retirement job.” He has held a variety of corporate roles in engineering and broadcast equity development.

 

* The 2n-2  number of possible hosts on a segment (where n is the number of host bits — those rightmost address bits — is because the lowest address in the segment is the “network number” and the highest number is the “broadcast address” to which all hosts on the segment listen and communicate with one another.

The post Let’s Talk About the “Mask” appeared first on Radio World.

Author: Frank McCoy
Posted: February 21, 2019, 5:45 pm

A Q&A with new SBE board member Chris Tarr

The post Why Engineering Training and Mentorship Matter in 2019 appeared first on Radio World.

Chris Tarr

Following in the footsteps of an older brother — and now focused on the importance of training and mentoring new professionals — engineer Chris Tarr is stepping up to serve on the board of the Society of Broadcast Engineers.

This seat opened when Kim Sacks, CBT, resigned her position on the board. Known as an engineer with “boundless energy for broadcast engineering” (so said SBE President Jim Leifer upon Tarr’s appointment), Tarr will bring a cadre of technical acronyms to the position — among them CSRE, AMD, DRB and CBNE — as well as a list of new priorities for the SBE Mentorship Program.

Tarr spoke with Radio World about the recruitment challenges the industry faces, why the organization’s Mentorship Program is so important and how he first got bit by that bug known as radio.

Radio World: How did you get started in broadcasting? What do you find appealing about this community?

Chris Tarr: I actually got “bit” by the radio bug when I was nine years old. My older brother was a morning show host, and I went to visit him. As soon as I stepped into the studio, I was hooked! I started working in radio on the air at 16, but at the same time I learned all I could about the technology and spent lots of time helping out the engineers.

Not only do I love being able to work with such creative people, I also love that I can use technology to remove the barriers that exist when these people try and create compelling content for their audiences. I also very much enjoy the camaraderie that exists between broadcast technicians. I’ve yet to meet someone who wasn’t willing to drop everything to help a peer when needed.

RW: What are you most looking forward to when it comes to participating as a member of the board?

Tarr: This is actually my second time around on the board. I was elected to a term on the board in 2006 and chaired the technology committee. Just like then, I look forward to representing the many hardworking technology professionals in the field.

We often fight an uphill battle trying to get stakeholders to understand the challenges in bringing new technicians into the field, and how well trained technical professionals can do more than just fix what’s broken. We can do many things to improve operational efficiencies as well as the bottom line.

RW: What is the SBE Mentorship program? How will you be involved?

Tarr: The Mentorship Program was developed by the SBE to address the decline in numbers of technical professionals. There really isn’t much in the way of training or education for new professionals, especially in the broadcast disciplines. There are a lot of great IT people out there who are starting to look at a career in broadcast, but there isn’t a real obvious educational track. Just like how the SBE took the lead in professional certification, the Society looks to take the lead in education and training.

Kim Sacks was the chair tasked with creating the Mentor Committee and has done a spectacular job in launching the program. I signed up from the start to be a mentor, and have two mentees that I am teaching. With Kim leaving the board, I will take over as chair and work on growing and improving the program.

RW: What steps are you planning on taking to help further the Mentorship program success?

Tarr: One of the things I’m working on right away is personally presenting the next webinar for the mentees on proper business conduct. I’m also working with the committee on creating a more formal training program with the mentors and mentees when they join the program to make sure that this excellent benefit is used to its fullest potential.

It’s important that the mentees know how to ask the right questions, and for the mentors to be sure that they’re forming a relationship that hopefully lasts a lifetime. I also want to create opportunities for “skill-set” mentors — people who may not want to take on a full mentorship role but could be a resource for mentors and mentees on specific topics.

RW: What do you think are one or two of the biggest issues that SBE should be tackling as we head into 2019?

Tarr: Spectrum management is always on the radar. The cellular and ISP industries have a voracious appetite for RF spectrum. The SBE has been an excellent voice for the broadcast industry in front of the FCC and other organizations, making sure that we’re heard. That is only going to become more important.

I also think that we have a very real looming crisis in terms of the workforce. Technicians are leaving the industry faster than they can be replaced. It won’t be long before we’re going to see jobs unfilled across the country.

RW: What is it about the SBE organization that makes it a vital component within the broadcasting industry?

Tarr: As I mentioned earlier, there is no organization more active in protecting our interests with the FCC than the SBE. So many times threats to our spectrum have popped up and the SBE was there speaking up.

I’m also a deep believer in the SBE certification program, especially with the FCC no longer having a licensing requirement. It’s a fantastic way for non-technical people to immediately know that they’re dealing with a knowledgeable technical professional when they see those certifications.

RW: Do you have any other key goals you’d like to share?

Tarr: Being appointed to the board is a bit different than being elected. I really appreciate the confidence that SBE President Jim Leifer and the executive committee have shown in me by their appointment. I plan to show them and our members how passionate I am for our industry and the professionals in it, and what the future holds for us.

The post Why Engineering Training and Mentorship Matter in 2019 appeared first on Radio World.

Author: Susan Ashworth
Posted: February 21, 2019, 5:41 pm

With more than 930,000 DAB+ receivers sold in 2018, the country continues its journey toward digitization

The post DAB+ Gains Ground in Australia appeared first on Radio World.

The author is communications manager for WorldDAB.

Broadcasters and the wider audio industry in Australia aren’t the only ones welcoming the digital revolution with open arms, as the latest figures released by Commercial Radio Australia indicate consumers are embracing radio’s transition to digital.

Aris Erdogdu

According to the latest figures on DAB+, more than 930,000 DAB+ receivers were sold in Australia in 2018 alone, while average weekly audiences for digital-only radio stations exceeded 2 million. What’s more, over 4.21 million people (approximately a third of the population aged 10 and over) listened to DAB+ digital radio each week in the five metro capital cities in 2018, compared to 3.62 million in 2017.

EVOLUTION

Digital radio in Australia has come a long way since the initial DAB+ tests that took place in the cities of Sydney and Melbourne in 1999. Following the launch of the original plan for digital radio in 2005, the first commercial and public broadcasters started airing in DAB+ in five of the major cities and capitals of the country — Sydney, Perth, Melbourne, Brisbane and Adelaide. The circle was later completed with the launch of fulltime DAB+ services in Hobart, Darwin and Canberra in 2018. Now, commercial broadcasters are starting to contemplate launching their services in regional locations.

The DAB+ timeline in Australia. Photo courtesy of Jeremy Millar, ABC.

Addressing the audience at the European Broadcasting Union’s Digital Radio Summit in Geneva in February, Jeremy Millar, senior strategy lead at the Australian Broadcasting Corp., pointed out that the size of Australia has been a challenge in terms of rolling out new transmitters. The distance from Perth, on the west coast of Australia to Sydney on the east coast, is just under 4,000 kilometers (2,500 miles), and in European standards, comparable to the distance from Madrid to Moscow.

 

Taking into account the size of the country, the reach of the AM band has traditionally suited Australia’s enormous geography, with powerful AM transmitters being able to reach far into the inner parts of the country. However, much like in Europe, AM radio in Australia is experiencing a significant decline due to poor sound quality, an ageing audience (primarily people aged 60 and above) and the failure to attract new listeners, which has paved the way for the rollout of DAB+.

While radio listening via AM/FM radio remains important across major networks, radio listening via DAB+ has significantly increased over the past year — so much so that it is now growing at a faster rate than internet streaming. It is also worth noting that despite the large size of the country, the vast majority (over 85 percent) of Australians live within 50 kilometers of the coast, meaning two thirds of the population is currently located within an area serviced by DAB+.

The automotive industry is also helping to facilitate the transition to DAB+, with 36 percent of all radio listening experiences in Australia taking place in a vehicle. The number of cars sold with DAB+ is steadily rising, with 65 percent of all new vehicles sold in 2018 including a DAB+ radio. There are currently over 45 automotive manufacturers selling vehicles with DAB+ in Australia, and just under 2 million cars equipped with DAB+ on the roads of Australia.

The cumulative sales of vehicles sold with DAB+ in Australia. Photo courtesy of Jeremy Millar, ABC.

DAB+ has hit the ground running and is quickly turning into Australian’s favorite way of listening to radio. Driven by the automotive industry’s inclination towards DAB+ radio and the inevitable demise of the AM band, annual DAB+ sales are on the verge of reaching one million, and the future of digital radio in Australia is looking bright, much like its sunshine.

ABU-DBS

More about how Australia has leveraged the power of DAB+ can be heard at the ABU digital Broadcasting Symposium taking place in Kuala Lumpur on March 4–7. The event will comprise a conference, industry exhibition and a number of focused workshops, including one organized by principal sponsor WorldDAB. The half-day workshop titled ‘DAB+ – understanding the business case’ will bring to light some of the latest DAB+ developments from Asia Pacific and Europe, and emphasize what exactly broadcasters need to do to ensure their place in the connected dash.

[Read: WorldDAB Introduces in-Car Digital Radio UX Guidelines]

A number of high-profile speakers from the Australian broadcast industry will be in attendance at the ABU digital Broadcasting Symposium including Joan Warner, vice-president & chair of the WorldDAB Asia Pacific committee and CEO of CRA; Grant Blackley, CEO, MD and executive director of Southern Cross Media Group Ltd.; Deb Hishon, media measurement director, ANZ at GfK; Kathryn Brown, head of strategic development at CRA; Aaron Alphonso, CTO at Macquarie Media Ltd.; and Lesley Sabel, founder of S-Comm Technologies.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The post DAB+ Gains Ground in Australia appeared first on Radio World.

Author: Aris Erdogdu
Posted: February 21, 2019, 12:42 pm

“This year, I anticipate more interest in content delivery solutions”

The post NAB Exhibitor Viewpoint: Jacob Daniluck, Tieline appeared first on Radio World.

The spring NAB Show is approaching. Between now and then Radio World will conduct several short Q&As with manufacturers about their plans and offerings, to help you get the most out of the big annual trade show. Jacob Daniluck handles sales for Tieline Americas.

Radio World: How has business been for the company since last year’s NAB Show?

Jacob Daniluck: Business has been great. In particular networks are starting to look for new and improved remote systems with the latest technology, for example, our SmartStream PLUS (network diversity streaming). Or for more capabilities in a single product, such as the built-in audio recording and playback capability in our ViA remote codec, along with audio processing features like EQ and input compression.

RW: What are you hearing from your customers about their business outlook this year? In what areas should we expect growth or the most interesting projects?

Daniluck: We have heard more U.S. customers are starting to test centralized systems. This may revolve around remote codecs, phone lines, or even automation. In respect to the latest bankruptcies and the U.S. economy, we have noticed customers have been very conservative the last six months. This does not relate only to the radio business, but numerous markets in the U.S. economy.

RW: Within the last year or so the two largest station ownership groups in the U.S. have filed for bankruptcy while there’s also been serious consolidation as other groups leave the market. Stepping away from your particular segment, what is your feeling for the overall health of the radio industry?

Daniluck: From the numerous conversations I have had with stations all around North America, I have a sense that radio as a whole is stable. Right now, I am seeing smaller stations focusing on reaching out to the community more, while larger stations are focusing on bringing the “social” community into their station — with the use of visual radio.

RW: You’ve been active in the codecs market for over a decade. What’s the biggest problem or challenge facing users in this segment right now?

Daniluck: The biggest problem for a large percentage of codec users in the U.S. is currently network congestion. Even with LTE data networks, and soon to be 5G networks. Network congestion is still one of the biggest challenges they deal with. With Tieline products we have added the ability to stream a redundant IP connection to the studio as live backup, using our technology called SmartStream PLUS. We can also bond multiple IP interfaces using Fuse-IP technology, e.g. two cellular air cards, to create a larger data pipe.

RW: What new goodies will your company be showing? Why should attendees visit your booth, N7119?

Daniluck: Much of what we will show this year will center around remote control and making it simpler to connect over IP. At NAB this year we are officially launching the Cloud Codec Controller designed to manage an entire fleet of Tieline codecs remotely. It allows engineers to configure, connect and monitor all remote codecs from the studio. In addition to this, we can announce the arrival of the Tieline Traversal Server. This service will help to seamlessly create IP connections behind NATs and support address books to make it easier to dial different codecs.

Lastly, we will show a new accessory for the ViA remote codec. This will feature a dual active, dual SIM card wireless LTE module. A large number of our customers requested an internal module with dual modems to avoid using external USB air cards. This new module also means there will now be seven different IP interface options from which to choose when going live with the ViA.

RW: What do you anticipate will be the most significant technology trend at the 2019 NAB Show?

Daniluck: This year, I anticipate more interest in content delivery solutions. Whether that is for radio, internet streams or TV. I foresee more focus on how to deliver content more efficiently and effectively.

RW: Will you be attending any sessions or looking forward to any events?

Daniluck: Every year, I always plan a few sessions that I would like to attend. However, my main focus at the show is making sure that every person who walks through our booth is attended to and all of their questions answered. Here is a short list of sessions I would like to attend:

  • Blockchain — An Opportunity to Refine Intellectual Property Management, Éric Minoli, Groupe Média TFO
  • Audio over IP: Anatomy of a Full-Stack Implementation in AES67/SMPTE ST 2110-30 Environments, Ievgen Kostiukevch, European Broadcasting Union
  • AI Technology Is Changing the Future of Video Compression, Jean-Louis Diascorn,  Harmonic

RW: You’re a show veteran, how has the show changed since your first visit?

Daniluck: In the last decade the show floor has changed a lot. The NAB has added many new sections and areas such as drones in the Central Hall. Audio and video streaming solutions, and IP streaming generally, is certainly front and center, with older technologies like ISDN and POTS taking a back seat. Perhaps one of the most notable changes has been the addition of the Main Stage area in the North Hall.

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The post NAB Exhibitor Viewpoint: Jacob Daniluck, Tieline appeared first on Radio World.

Author: RW Staff
Posted: February 21, 2019, 12:55 am

Commission seeking suggestions on how to redesign and amend complex licensing regulations

The post FCC Proposes to Modernize and Improve NCE FM and LPFM Selection Procedures appeared first on Radio World.

The Federal Communications Commission has turned its efforts to improving and streamlining rules for noncommercial educational broadcast and low-power FM stations.

At its February Open Meeting, the commission issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking whose goal is to streamline the rules and procedures for processing and licensing competing applications for new NCE and LPFM stations.

[Read: NCE Loses CP After FCC Says It Failed to Construct on Time]

As it stands now, mutually exclusive (MX) applications for new NCE and LPFM stations — those that are in conflict and cannot simultaneously be granted — are currently resolved with a procedure that includes a point system for selecting among MX applications. And while the NCE and LPFM procedures have led to the grant of several thousand new station construction permits over the years, the FCC said, some of these regulations are “unnecessarily complex and have caused problems for applicants seeking in good faith to comply with them,” the commission said in its announcement.

The NPRM will hopefully clarify, simplify and improve both the selection and licensing procedures and therefore expedite the initiation of new services to the public.

The changes proposed by the NPRM include:

Improve the NCE tie-breaker process and reduce the need for mandatory time-sharing;

Clarify aspects of the “holding period” rule by which NCE permittees must maintain the characteristics for which they received comparative preferences and points;

Reclassify as “minor” gradual changes in governing boards with respect to nonstock and membership LPFM and NCE applicants;

Eliminate the current requirement that NCE applicants amend their governing documents to pledge that localism/diversity be maintained in order to receive points as “established local applicants” and for “diversity of ownership;”

Extend the LPFM construction period from 18-months to a full three years;

Allow the assignment and transfer of LPFM construction permits after an 18-month holding period and eliminate the three-year holding period on assigning LPFM licenses.

While these rules have enabled the launch of thousands of new radio stations, some of the rules are “needlessly complex and can trip up well-intentioned but inexperienced applicants seeking to bring new radio service to their communities,” said FCC Chairman Ajit Pai.

Essentially, we’re aiming to provide greater clarity to broadcast applicants, and thus make the process easier for them, deliver more new services to the listening public, and reduce appeals of our comparative licensing decisions,” he said.

New Commissioner Geoffrey Starks added that the NPRM should offer improvements to the procedures used to get and keep LPFM radio stations and NCE stations on the air.

I’ve long … been intrigued by the hyperlocal service and opportunities for new entrants that LPFM stations provide across the country,” he said. “I am generally in favor of designing processes that allow these licensees to spend the majority of their time on programming, rather than paperwork.”

Comments on the issue can be submitted through the commission’s ECFS database using Media Bureau Docket Number 19-3. It is formally known as the tongue-twisting “Reexamination of the Comparative Standards and Procedures for Licensing Noncommercial Educational Broadcast and Low Power FM Stations.”

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The post FCC Proposes to Modernize and Improve NCE FM and LPFM Selection Procedures appeared first on Radio World.

Author: Susan Ashworth
Posted: February 20, 2019, 11:54 pm

Drones will very soon need registration posted on outside of device

The post Show Me the Sticker: FAA Issues New Rules on Drone Registration Labels appeared first on Radio World.

Keeping track of which drone is which may soon become a bit easier now that the Federal Aviation Administration has ruled that small unmanned aircraft must display official registration numbers on the outside of the aircraft.

Previously, owners of small unmanned aircraft were permitted to enclose its FAA-issued registration number in a compartment inside of the device, as long as the compartment could be opened without a special tool.

[Read: A New Tool for the Broadcast Engineer]

Starting Feb. 23, however, a new ruling issued by the FAA and the Department of Transportation stipulates that small unmanned aircraft owners must display the unique identifier — which is assigned by the FAA after registering the device — on the outside surface of an aircraft.

Public comments on the issue range from supportive to outraged. Some drone operators expressed concern (via the federal electronic rulemaking portal Regulations.gov) over government overreach. Others asked for more detailed descriptions from the FAA on exactly where a registration number should be affixed. Others pressed the FAA to modify that ruling so that it only applies to commercial drone operators.

According to the FAA, this rule change is necessary to enhance the safety and security of those on the ground seeking registration information from an unmanned aircraft. With this new ruling, the FAA said that individuals will now be able to view a unique identifier directly without needing to handle the aircraft.

Though the rules flip-flopped in 2017 and 2018, current FAA rules now dictate that unmanned aircraft systems must be registered if they weigh more than 0.55 pounds but less than 55 pounds. Commercial entities operating drones weighing more than 55 pounds must apply for special authority with the FAA.

Nearly two years ago, the Department of Homeland Security formally requested that the FAA change its rulemaking, saying small unmanned aircraft “can be a source of risk, a potential threat, and time consuming for the law enforcement officer to identify the owner/operator for law enforcement, security or safety purposes,” said DHS Director L. Eric Patterson in a letter to the FAA.

Registration information that is external and does not require handling of the UAS would permit safe collection of registration information without having to access the battery compartment or another closed compartment and would facilitate rapid assessment of the threat,” he said.

The FAA is asking for comments on the ruling before March 15. Commenters should use Docket Number FAA-2018-1084.

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The post Show Me the Sticker: FAA Issues New Rules on Drone Registration Labels appeared first on Radio World.

Author: Susan Ashworth
Posted: February 20, 2019, 7:09 pm

It plays an important role and can still go a long way

The post Does Shortwave Have a Future? appeared first on Radio World.

The author is chairman of Digital Radio Mondiale.

When is the last time you heard a shortwave radio transmission? And why should you put up with possible crackly audio and some interference when we have now internet, satellites, FM and all forms of digital radio?

Ruxandra Obreja

This holds true if you are in London, Boston, Paris or Toronto. But what if you are on an island in Indonesia, or find yourself in west China, in Kashmir or in Brazilian Amazonia? Because, whether we like it or not, there are several remote places in this vast world, many of which still depend on shortwave broadcasting.

In the past (think the Cold War) a lot of people were able to obtain free information from the international shortwave program. Many international broadcasters were running expensive, energy-guzzling transmitters for this frequency band “without borders” that ranges from 1.7–30 MHz (176.3–10.0 m), from the high end of the medium frequency band just above the medium wave AM broadcast band, to the end of the HF band.

Shortwave is just short of a miracle, actually. When it is beamed at an angle, it hits the ionosphere. A mirror around the Earth and then it falls like a ball at great distances, beyond the horizon. Thus these transmissions reach listeners over large areas, continents and beyond. Two or three high-power transmitters can potentially cover the entire world.

Shortwave is used not just by international radio stations or radio amateurs but is also essential for aviation, marine, diplomatic and emergency purposes. Shortwave signals are not restricted or controlled by the receiving countries and, as frequencies change in winter and summer, they need to be coordinated internationally.

The Woofferton transmitting station in the United Kingdom. Photo courtesy of Neale Bateman

This is the task of the High Frequency Co-Ordination Conference (HFCC), a non-governmental, non-profit association, and a sector member of the International Telecommunication Union (ITU). This group meets twice a year to produce a coordinated schedule for a summer and winter season, ironing out any interference issues among countries or broadcasters. At their recent meeting last month, they also discussed — once again — the future of shortwave.

Nobody can deny that shortwave goes beyond geographical, cultural, religious, political barriers, is free and can be consumed anonymously, which few platforms can claim nowadays. About 20 years ago, the BBC decided to cut its shortwave transmissions to countries such as the United States and other developed parts of the world, since these territories, or rather “markets” were served by FM and the internet etc. Other important international broadcasters, including Deutsche Welle, Radio Australia and Radio Exterior de Espana soon copied this model..

But the BBC kept shortwave for its large audiences in Africa and part of Asia. At the moment the major shortwave broadcasters are BBC, Voice of America, All India Radio, China Radio International, Radio Japan, Radio Romania, KBS Korea and Voice of Turkey and many more.

Twenty years after the first big blow to shortwave, this frequency band and its potential is being revisited. After all, not all the listeners in the world have broadband, smart phones, data plans, connected cars or enough disposable income. And analog radio in general continues to be resilient: a third of households in the United Kingdom don’t have a digital radio (DAB penetration has reached 64 percent). That is 25 years after the first DAB broadcasts started in London in 1993), and almost 20 years after the commercial players join in.

Shortwave has been put on the agenda again as some of the old transmitters needed to be replaced or upgraded. Meanwhile it has become digital and this means more efficient transmitters and significant energy savings of up to 80 percent compared with the old analog. No wonder most of the analog shortwave transmitters sold today are DRM-capable or ready.

In 2019 the BBC is still on shortwave and has large audiences in countries like Nigeria, having recently introduced new shortwave transmissions in additional languages. In Australia there was recently a wide consultation on the possible reintroduction of shortwave for the many Pacific islands depending on the services of Australian broadcasters, which had rushed to close down good shortwave facilities in the pursuit of internet and local digital.

Radio Exterior Espana has doubled its transmissions since October, adding other languages than just Spanish to its schedule. Radio Moscow, the blunt propaganda tool of the Cold War, has been transformed into the sleek Radio Sputnik. And Radio China has quietly upgraded some of its many shortwave transmitters for domestic use and is now covering practically the whole country with digital (DRM) shortwave signals.

[Read: China Makes Its DRM Move]

Digital Radio Mondiale was originally invented to offer medium (AM) and large coverage (HF) and the advantages of the good audio quality and extra multimedia services that can take shortwave into the 21st century. Maybe DRM was ahead of its time. The phasing in of digital broadcasts internationally was not in

tandem with the production and sale of receivers, which remains a regional and national business. Since its birth DRM has proven that it is a suitable option for shortwave offering an good digital quality of audio and even short live video at great distance without fading and crackly sound.

Now, at last, there are DRM receivers capable of receiving shortwave, there are broadcasts and interested broadcasters. Quietly and surely shortwave is being re-examined and appreciated for the quality of broadcasts and its potential as a “crisis radio” too. It can become crucial in emergencies when local and regional radio stations, satellite and internet may be off the air due to damage. Broadband is getting cheaper but is limited, 5G will come but not just yet, digital shortwave is here.

The golden age of analog shortwave broadcasting is probably over. However the band has an important role and great potential. It needs to be appreciated and examined with an open mind as there now seems to exist a true alignment of national interests, technical possibilities and receiver availability, which could give shortwave a new lease on life as a viable and unique platform.

The post Does Shortwave Have a Future? appeared first on Radio World.

Author: Ruxandra Obreja
Posted: February 20, 2019, 3:00 pm

Strengthens local sales and support with new hires

The post Lawo Establishes UK Subsidiary appeared first on Radio World.

German broadcast manufacturer Lawo has opened a subsidiary in the United Kingdom. It has also added to its sales and support team with new appointments.

The company welcomes Kadhim Boyd, pre-sales and systems engineer and James Walker,  solution architect. Olivier Hough and Devin Workman have also joined Lawo as sales managers.

Pictured from left to right are James Walker, Olivier Hough, Devin Workman, Kadhim Boyd and Craig Newbury.

Based in the U.K. offices, the company says the new hires will bring a “new quality of customer relationship” to the country through their expertise and years of commercial and practical sales engineering and support experience.

“Lawo is investing heavily in the U.K. as part of a drive to keep up with increasing activity and opportunity in the area of IP processing and distribution, and management of IP-based media workflows,” said Craig Newbury, director of Sales and Operations, UK and Ireland. Newbury heads the new team.

Boyd previously worked as senior engineer, technical sales manager and principal systems engineer at Snell; Walker as head of system architecture and delivery – live production and infrastructure at Grass Valley; Hough as UK and Ireland strategic sales manager for Vitec production solutions; and Workman at HHB Communications/Scrub, where he specialized in the supply and support of Avid Pro Tools and S6 consoles, Dolby Atmos systems, and Audio-over-IP solutions for film and TV audio postproduction.

 

 

The post Lawo Establishes UK Subsidiary appeared first on Radio World.

Author: Marguerite Clark
Posted: February 20, 2019, 1:35 pm

Readily-available software apps provide great utility in a radio facility

The post vClock — A Solution for Problems We Didn’t Know We Had appeared first on Radio World.

Remnants of a hurricane just came through my area. Typically, I would be worried about the impact of high winds on the satellite signal we receive, but not today. Our station sits on an open field and often, when winds reach a certain level, our satellite goes in and out. In the past, we would manually change the network feed from satellite to internet, but not today.

As I look at the clocks around our studio, I see a wind alert blinking on the screen and I know that we have automatically made the change necessary. I thought this would be a good tip to share with Engineering Extra readers.

Holy Spirit Radio studio with the vClock screen prominently displayed.

Back in the May 23, 2018 issue of Radio World, I wrote about our small station, Holy Spirit Radio, transitioning from a traditional analog system to Wheatstone (“A Digital Guy Tackles Broadcast Radio Challenges”). As an outsider to radio, it has been an eye-opening experience regarding the endless possibilities that are available to us to deliver to our listeners in this disrupted age.

Since making that transition, we have continued to make upgrades in various areas to help with efficiency and reducing downtime to near zero. My background is not in radio or engineering but in changing technologies and the impact for businesses and their customers. Today I want to tell you about a surprising technology that has helped our little stations in so many ways. It is a simple clock app called vClock.

One day I was looking at technologies designed to work with the new Wheatstone WheatNet-IP system in unique ways. I was looking for automation software that might bring new functionality at lower cost than our current provider, but I found something completely different and I am so glad I did.

WHAT TIME IS IT, ANYWAY?

I have always been frustrated that our clocks had different times than our automation software, so when I noticed vClock, I decided to give it a trial run. vClock, produced by Voceware, is customizable software that is easy to work with and connects to numerous sources including Wheatstone.

Initially, I viewed vClock as an opportunity to provide time in our studios as well as in our office area, but I realized I could use it to alert us if a signal was lost with either of our stations or our streaming. To accomplish this, I used a free program called Pira CZ Silence Detector to monitor specific signals. I was also interested to connect directly to Wheatstone and find possibilities for that.

Like many stations, we use some of the same connections in different studios within the facility, such as to our telephone hybrid connection. This turned into a two-step process to ensure the hybrid had the right output based on where it was used. Users had to hit a “soft” button to change the output.

My desire was to automate this when the slider was turned on, but this would require wiring a logic input/output (LIO) to create the triggers. I could just not get it right. That changed with vClock. Today, if someone in our production room turns on the channel, it triggers vClock, which sends the signal to Wheatstone to change to the proper output. When they are done, it automatically changes back. Simple.

A custom vClock screen shows various alerts and functions in the studio.

These are some of the basic uses, but there are so many other possibilities. At my home, for years I have been using various automation devices such as Samsung SmartThings. I have brought many of the devices to work for use at the stations, so I can easily reboot things or turn things on and off based upon rules or monitor for motion or water leaks, etc.

As you use these home automation devices, you learn of useful websites such as https://ifttt.com. IFTTT stands for “If This, Then That,” and it allows you to build all kinds of interesting rules with electronic devices.

RULES, RULES, RULES …

Many of the rules I have built for home use weather as a predictor. “If it is cloudy, turn certain lights on,” etc. As I played around with vClock, I realized it can take HTML commands, so I built a connection to the web and then built rules with IFTTT using a widget called Webroot.

The first connection was based on motion outside our building or someone ringing the doorbell. For a small station, often only one person is working, and if you are in a studio, you will hear nothing. Now you receive an alert on the screen.

After we built that rule, we worked on others for wind and snow. If wind exceeds a certain threshold, it sends a command to my vClock to trigger a wind alert. The wind alert triggers a Wheatstone macro to change our primary input from satellite to a Barix codec (internet feed). The macro also makes the satellite backup. When the winds are below a certain threshold, it changes back again after a minimum amount of time.

I built a similar rule for gusting snow, which also has created trouble in the past. The goal of the wind and snow rules is to simply make for a better listening experience.

There are loads of rules we have built using this software. It is not a simple clock. Some of the rules can be seen when looking at the clock, such as studio in use, station down or wind/snow alerts, but many others are not visible.

One of the reasons I started looking for automation software was because the handoff of metadata to our streaming software was not typically clean, so today I have built our schedule into vClock, and it handles the metadata for us. Eventually I will get back to looking for the right automation software, but this is a good interim solution for the main problem we have.

We also use vClock as scheduling software for Wheatstone, allowing us to trigger macro changes based on the time or other factors. As an example, I am building rules that will turn off all non-essential Wheatstone blades and surfaces when our building alarm is turned on. When the alarm is deactivated, it will turn all the key items back on.

There are endless possibilities with the right software to make all our jobs a little easier and allow us to focus on the right things for our business.

Frank Eliason is a consultant helping Fortune 500 brands with customer experience and digital disruption. He is an author and director of operations for Holy Spirit Radio in the Philadelphia area.

RW Engineering Extra wants to hear how you solved your own technical problems. Email rweetech@gmail.com.

The post vClock — A Solution for Problems We Didn’t Know We Had appeared first on Radio World.

Author: Frank Eliason
Posted: February 19, 2019, 7:08 pm

Move designed to reduce regulatory burdens for broadcasters

The post FCC Eliminates One EEO Report Filing Requirement appeared first on Radio World.

The Federal Communications Commission moved to eliminate a long-standing filing requirement that keeps close tabs on a broadcaster’s equal employment opportunity practices — but Chairman Ajit Pai and other commissioners have stated that the decision will not impact the will commission’s commitment to carefully enforce its own EEO rules.

At its February Open Meeting, the commission voted to eliminate the Broadcast Mid-Term Report filing requirement, known to broadcasters as Form 397. This form has long been part of the commission’s mid-term reviews of broadcasters’ equal employment opportunity practices. Because most of the information that is collected in Form 397 will also be available in a broadcaster’s online public inspection file, the commission decided this particular filing requirement was outdated and unnecessary.

[Read: FCC Proposes Scrapping Broadcast Midterm EEO Report]

“At one time, this form served a useful purpose: It required certain broadcast television and radio stations to provide equal employment opportunity information around the midpoint of their eight-year license terms to assist the FCC in determining which stations would be subject to a mid-term review,” said FCC Chairman Ajit Pai. “But today the FCC can easily access nearly all of this information online in each station’s public inspection file.”

Following adoption of the order, the FCC plans to modify its online public inspection file so that this information will be more easily accessible. “Ending this redundant reporting requirement is such a common-sense step that literally nobody in our record — not a single commenter — has opposed it,” he said.

Pai also reiterated that the decision will not impact the commission’s ability to enforce its EEO rules, and he made some personnel steps to ensure that is the case, Pai said. The commission voted to move staff handling EEO enforcement from the Media Bureau to the Enforcement Bureau.

“Indeed, we recently made clear our commitment on this score by voting to move staff handling EEO enforcement from the Media Bureau to the Enforcement Bureau, where they will be better equipped to take action when our rules are violated,” Pai said.

Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel concurred with the ruling, but in a statement she expressed disappointment that the commission did not also tackle the issue of diversity in broadcast ownership under this same order.

“Under the Communications Act, this agency has a duty to develop policies to support the diversity of broadcast ownership,” she said. “So while I appreciate the practical decision to eliminate Form 397, I am disappointed that we put the broader effort to address discriminatory practices related to media ownership off for the future,” she said. “Because media ownership matters.” She said in a statement that the commission has agreed to take up the issue in a future rulemaking.

The FCC also announced it would seek public comment on a proposal to ramp up enforcement of the FCC’s broadcast employment nondiscrimination rule, a move that organizations like the Multicultural Media, Telecom and Internet Council specifically commended. “The commission’s vote to open a comment period on EEO enforcement methods is long overdue and most welcome,” said Maurita Coley, president and CEO of MMTC.

Prior to the February vote, this proposal had been pending before the FCC since 2004, the organization said. Specifically, the supporters have asked the FCC to ban the predominant use of word-of-mouth recruitment from workplaces. According to the MMTC, the commission’s vote marks a definitive step by the Pai administration toward preventing race and gender discrimination in FCC-regulated industries.

The Report and Order can be found here.

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The post FCC Eliminates One EEO Report Filing Requirement appeared first on Radio World.

Author: Susan Ashworth
Posted: February 19, 2019, 6:52 pm

It’s the only known mobile radio broadcast studio in the U.S. that’s also a food truck and performance stage

The post Listeners Eat to the Beat With KJZZ’s Soundbite appeared first on Radio World.

Soundbite

Part radio studio, part kitchen, NPR member station KJZZ FM’s Soundbite truck may well be unique in the United States. The 40-foot custom vehicle, based in Phoenix, combines a radio broadcast studio and control room, an industrial-grade kitchen and — oh, by the way — a drop-down performance stage.

“The idea for the truck came from a desire for the station to have a larger presence in the community,” explains Scott Morrow, production coordinator for KJZZ(FM) 91.5 MHz, KBAQ(FM) 89.5 MHz/K-BACH, Sun Sounds 89.5 MHz (HD3), KJZZ’s youth media center Spot 127 and Soundbite. “The metro area is a big place with a diverse community. One of the folks at the station said, ‘The best bridge between people and cultures is food and music.’ That was the genesis.”

The custom vehicle, built by Apex Specialty Vehicles, a food truck fabricator, provides KJZZ (news by day, jazz and blues at night) and sister station K-BACH (a 24-hour classical music station) with a way to physically engage with the community. “We can go to art festivals or music festivals, put music on the stage and do interviews,” says Morrow.

The kitchen, which occupies the rear third of the truck, is operated by Short Leash, a local restaurateur offering signature hot dogs and doughnuts. The rest of the truck houses a radio studio, with a large picture window that looks out onto the stage, and a control room.

The studio seats three and is equipped with Shure SM7B microphones, Morrow reports. The control room, acoustically isolated from the studio, is outfitted with a Wheatstone digital radio console and seats either a board operator or a host/operator.

“The best part is that we have an internal Ethernet network with a switch and a router,” says Morrow. “We have internet access for reporting, and it also provides a connection for our rack-mounted Comrex unit linking back to the station.”

LIVE AND BROADCAST

Interviews are typically recorded to a laptop running Adobe Premiere Pro, says Morrow. “It’s very basic; we’re just using it as a bit bucket. We handle editing afterward.”

For live streaming or broadcast, “We can send the audio back over a machine-to-machine 4G wireless connection that operates with multiple SIM cards,” Morrow continues. “On the station side, they can handle the audio however they like — record it, put it on air or put it to a live stream. We do have the ability to livestream directly from the truck, but we haven’t done that yet.”

Soundbite’s live broadcast debut was technically challenging, Morrow reports. “We really bit off a lot,” he laughs. “It was a performance with an 80-piece orchestra. On the day of the event, we had 11 people working: our engineering department, IT department, on-air staff and some technicians at the station.”

Partner live production specialist Central Sound at Eight, a group associated with PBS broadcaster Channel 8, based at Arizona State University’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication in downtown Phoenix, supported Soundbite. “They put up a Decca Tree and were doing multichannel recording and gave us a live stereo mix. The host in the truck had a video feed from the stage and did a live announce for the radio audience.”

Key to the Soundbite truck is its main I/O panel, seen here as it was being wired.

MAIN PANEL

Key to the Soundbite truck is its main I/O panel, seen here as it was being wired.

The external drop-down stage can accommodate a handful of performers. “We carry a small PA of QSC K Series mains and monitors, and we use a rackmount Midas mixer with 32 channels in, 16 out. We also have a complement of Shure SM57 and 58 microphones and Radial DI boxes, plus an assortment of snakes from Whirlwind.”

The bulk of the truck’s gear was purchased from local supplier EAR, he reports. “They’ve been very helpful and are a longtime Phoenix outfit.”

Morrow, who was hired to run the truck, oversaw equipment installation after the vehicle arrived from Apex. “I had a lot of help,” he says. “Our engineering department is small but mighty; they’re very knowledgeable.”

He is especially proud of an I/O panel that he implemented between the inside and exterior of the truck, he says. “I can take audio inside the truck, like an interview, and put it outside on the P.A. Or if there’s music on the stage running through the Midas mixer, we could also make a broadcast or recording mix in the truck and send it to a recorder or back to the station.”

FOOD!

KJZZ’s Soundbite in Phoenix is the only known mobile radio broadcast studio in the United States that’s also a combination food truck and performance stage, able to serve up audio, video, artists and hot dogs with ease.

The cable trough between the onboard console and the studio rack is about 15 feet, Morrow notes. “I’ve been keeping track of every piece of wire in that trough. We have 2,680 feet.”

External displays are positioned to either side of the stage area. “They’re fed by HDMI. Sometimes what we do with the truck is internal, representing the station, and sometimes it goes to events supported by an underwriter, so we can put our own material on the screens or sometimes it’s an underwriter’s material. The audio can also be split off the HDMI signal and put into the truck’s audio system, into the Wheatstone board inside or the Midas outside.”

An event in January that Morrow was prepping for offered an opportunity to drive the screens from a laptop in real time and showcase the truck’s abilities: “It’s a mountain bike relay race, Six Hours in the Papago. We’re going to be displaying live race results on the screens, announcing the race from the stage and serving food from the truck, all at the same time.”

Food and music really are a bridge, says Morrow, who hopes that the Soundbite truck will spark the imagination of other broadcasters. “We’re waiting for someone to do something similar, but as far as we know, there isn’t one yet.”

The truck is also available to rent for private events. “It has attended a couple of corporate events and has been to a couple of weddings, but no one has yet been married on the stage,” he reports. “I’m hoping that’s going to happen someday.”

Comment on this or any story. Email radioworld@futurenet.com.

The post Listeners Eat to the Beat With KJZZ’s Soundbite appeared first on Radio World.

Author: Steve Harvey
Posted: February 18, 2019, 5:17 pm

Discusses where the medium is doing well and where it can do better

The post Digital Radio Summit Looks at Radio’s Strengths, Weaknesses appeared first on Radio World.

The Digital Radio Summit is the flagship event within the European Broadcasting Union’s Digital Radio Week, which took place in Geneva Feb. 11–14.

Antonio Arcidiacono, EBU director of technology and innovation, gives the keynote speech during the Digital Radio Summit. All photos: Davide Moro

Antonio Arcidiacono, EBU’s director of technology and innovation welcomed the audience confirming EBU’s strong commitment to the development and rollout of advanced listening models.

INCREASED LISTENING

“The audience is interested in new audio possibilities like binaural audio and immersive audio” he said. “The EBU is always ready to test new broadcast formats during sport events and the Eurovision Song Contest, and it’s impressive how listeners feel when they experience these.”

Graham Dixon, EBU head of radio (left) is pictured with Marius Lillelien, NRK director for regional radio.

In his opinion, enriched audio content can provide a different connection to live sport events, and offers a real alternative to the prevailing video-only consumption model.

Several speakers then gave an overview of today’s market situation. Norway completed the FM switch off about one year ago. Just after the completion of the migration to DAB+, listening figures showed a moderate decline in average radio listening time.

“Radio listening is now growing each week, and the numbers are almost back to where they were before the switch off,” explained Marius Lillelien, NRK director for regional radio. “Thirty-five percent of listening is now on stations that didn’t exist before the switchoff, so the move to digital has been a great opportunity for the entire industry.”

BE CONFIDENT

Switzerland is the next country where the FM switch-off is likely to take place. Graham Dixon, EBU’s head of radio, pointed out that because Switzerland’s neighbors share the same languages (German, French and Italian), Swiss broadcasters may worry about their listeners switching to stations across the borders as a consequence of the domestic FM switch off.

Lillelien said in Norway radio listening to foreign radio stations is now “exactly the same as it was before,” even if Swedish radio stations have always been very popular in Norway, and almost everyone there speaks English.

“Notwithstanding the availability of English-speaking radio stations on the web, Norwegians are still loyal to their domestic stations,” he said. “Radio people should be very confident in the power that radio has. Listeners value their content and their favorite station, and they will follow it.”

[Read: Will Radio Eventually Look Like an App?]

AMERICA AND AUSTRALIA

HD Radio is gaining momentum in North America, and not just in the United States. According to David Layer, vice president for advanced engineering at

David Layer, vice president for advanced engineering at NAB, provides an overview of the status of digital radio in North America.

NAB, HD Radio in Mexico is a “nationwide phenomenon, both in FM and in AM.”

He explained that in Canada, even if HD Radio has not yet been officially adopted, radio broadcasters are widely deploying it, taking full advantage of the lessons learned in the U.S. and of the availability of a new generation of high-efficiency HD Radio-capable transmitters.

As regards in-car radio consumption, Layer commented that the steps car manufacturers are currently taking to enhance the onboard listening experience “is a wake-up call for all broadcasters: they can no longer think this world does not exist.”

Jeremy Millar, ABC senior strategy lead, highlights the key facts of AM broadcasting in Australia.

Australia is one of the few countries where AM broadcasting still plays a relevant role in terms of audience. In addition to other reasons, the typical AM propagation path fits the demographic distribution of inland Australia, where few people are scattered across a land that is bigger than Europe.

“Typical AM listeners are over 60 years old,” said Jeremy Millar, ABC senior strategy lead. “In Australia AM stations rely on a loyal audience, but are generally failing in attracting new or younger listeners, who prefer FM or digital stations. So AM listening will probably disappear due to demographic effect.”

 

 

The post Digital Radio Summit Looks at Radio’s Strengths, Weaknesses appeared first on Radio World.

Author: Davide Moro
Posted: February 18, 2019, 12:17 pm

Provides reliable mobile network access point for outside broadcasting

The post Bauer Media Relies on APT Mobile SureStreamer for Remotes appeared first on Radio World.

The author is director of marketing communications for WorldCast Systems.

Bauer Media, with its stations Downtown and CoolFM, is a major radio broadcaster in Newtonards (Belfast), Northern Ireland. Its 710,000 weekly listeners represent almost half the adult population of Northern Ireland. Serving the area’s event sponsors as well as the radio listening market with live and local radio content, local events coverage is amongst CoolFM’s main activities

The “Pete Snodden in the Morning” program on CoolFM.

As a new owner of the recently launched APT Mobile SureStreamer, Bauer Media is satisfied with this mobile network access solution, designed specifically for remotes and OBs. A single hardware unit housed in a lightweight carry-bag, the APT Mobile SureStreamer is approved for all networks, distributes audio over affordable 3G/4G public internet links, and offers optimal latency enabling broadcasters and journalists to maximize on-air time and deliver top-quality audio content directly from the field. Compatible with any codec type and brand, the APT

Mobile SureStreamer improves the quality of OBs and remotes by fixing quality issues users experience on the field.

OPTIMAL LATENCY

According to Conor Ewings, broadcast engineer at Bauer Media, the APT Mobile SureStreamer has transformed how his station is able to do remotes; their previous experience with known remote broadcasting challenges such as unreliable connectivity for outside broadcasts within difficult areas and latency issues have been solved thanks to the APT Mobile SureStreamer. They now benefit from a highly reliable connection with no packet dropouts, there is an improved ability to split the hosts, and latency is significantly better, enabling smooth conversation with callers to the studio.

After multiple times on-the-field broadcasting with the APT Mobile SureStreamer, Conor Ewings states “[The APT Mobile SureStreamer] has been a game-changer for us in the number and type of remotes we have been able to do. We have broadcast from locations we wouldn’t have dreamed of in the past, setting it up is so simple and the latency it gives us is beyond our expectations and has made the biggest difference when we run a show from multiple locations simultaneously and for phone-ins we do for competitions,” he said.

“The latency has been rock-solid at 60 ms and we haven’t dropped a single packet since we introduced the Mobile SureStreamer to our signal chain. Going forward we’re using it for radio, of course, but we can see uses in live social media streaming and any other streaming needs we will have. It gives us the chance to improve and standardize our IP links in remote broadcasting.”

WorldCast Systems, with its APT Mobile SureStreamer, was the only company according to Bauer Media capable of meeting their selection criteria in terms of capability to interface with their existing Comrex codec, connectivity in previously hard to reach areas, providing the lowest possible link latency for remotes, thanks to the TCP-free signal, dropout free connection and reducing setup and reconnaissance time.

Would Ewings recommend the APT Mobile SureStreamer to other stations looking to maximize on-air time while delivering pristine, uninterrupted audio to their listeners, directly from the field? “Yes, absolutely,” he said.

For information, contact WorldCast Systems in France at +33-557-928-928 or visit www.worldcastsystems.com.

The post Bauer Media Relies on APT Mobile SureStreamer for Remotes appeared first on Radio World.

Author: Chantal Fourgeaud
Posted: February 18, 2019, 9:54 am

A mainstay of the New York City recording scene, Hirsch was an influential part of the AES's Historical Committee

The post Harry Hirsch, Recording Entrepreneur, Dead at 89 appeared first on Radio World.

An engineer, musician, professor, studio owner and designer, serial entrepreneur, key figure in the Audio Engineering Society and more, Harry Hirsch died Thursday, Feb. 14. He was 89.

Born on Sept. 14, 1929, Hirsch’s first work in the music business as a 13-year-old drummer in The Catskills, but he made his mark behind the glass as a recording and mastering engineer who became a key part of New York City’s recording scene in the decades to come.

As founder and past president of MediaSound and Soundmixers, and as a co-designer of GRP Records and SoundTrack/NY studios, he hosted sessions for Frank Sinatra, Barbara Streisand, Stevie Nicks, Stevie Wonder, The Who, The Bee Gees, Judy Collins, Meatloaf, and many other notable artists.

An early proponent of digital technology, Harry served as a CD reissue producer for 10 Duke Ellington albums, and collaborated with Mercer Ellington on 10 more. In 1994 Harry Hirsch created Digi-Rom Inc., a New York-based audio CD, CD-ROM, DVD production/replication firm and vinyl mastering house, which he sold in 2004.

Simultaneously, however, he also became a pioneering audio educator, beginning in 1981 when he was appointed dean of the Audio Arts Program for New York’s Center for The Media Arts. That same year, he was named an adjunct professor at NYU where he lectured for the Music Technology Program.

In 2005, Hirsch and engineer Irv Joel co-chaired the Historical Committee for the Audio Engineering Society’s 119th Convention, held in New York that year. He went on to serve as AES Convention Historical Committee chair in 2007 and 2009. In 2011, Hirsch was presented with the AES Fellowship Award in recognition of his more than 50 years of pioneering work in the recording industry. He also served two terms as first vice president of the New York Chapter of the National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences.

“The range and depth of AES Historical Events was impressive, but not surprising, considering Harry Hirsch’s considerable expertise,” remarked AES President and frequent convention Co-Chair Agnieszka Roginska. “A long-time AES member, Harry worked closely with elder statesmen Irv Joel, Bill Wray and John Chester on our indispensable AES Oral History Project. He edited nearly 100 hour-long DVD interviews, including in-depth Q&As with industry doyens, Les Paul and Phil Ramone. Harry Hirsch was an irreplaceable fixture at AES Conventions and he has made an indelible contribution to our organization.”

He is survived by Doris Baran Hirsch, his partner at Digi-Rom and wife of 64 years; sons, Bruce and Marc; and grandchildren Paige and Garret. Services will be held at 10:30 a.m. on Sunday, February 18 at the Eden Memorial Chapels, 327 Main Street, Fort Lee, N.J. 201-947-3336.

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The post Harry Hirsch, Recording Entrepreneur, Dead at 89 appeared first on Radio World.

Author: ProSoundNetwork Editorial Staff
Posted: February 16, 2019, 3:00 am

Community media plays a valuable role in democracy

The post Community Broadcaster: Of Service appeared first on Radio World.

The author is membership program director of the National Federation of Community Broadcasters. NFCB commentaries are featured regularly at www.radioworld.com.

It was recently announced that the Arkansas Educational Television Network launched a new service that will stream state legislative meetings and related state government gatherings. According to Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson, “This [service] will give [the public] increased access to significant committee meetings, to commission meetings. I love the fact that some of our independent agencies will be under consideration for live-stream.”

This initiative is a wonderful example of how public media serves the needs of communities. Especially for young people, senior citizens and those who can’t otherwise get access to the municipal maze, broadcast of local government business is a great way to engage citizens and for lawmakers to demonstrate their commitment to voter involvement.

[Read: Community Broadcaster: Learning Together]

It is critical to note the latest effort in Arkansas is not unusual. So-called public, education and government (AKA PEG) media outlets have quietly provided such services for years. In big cities and small towns, community radio stations have aired hearings, meetings and city and state affairs for residents to tune in to in order to witness their representatives in action. No matter where you fall politically, we can all agree broadcast of these affairs in a net positive for a community and for democracy. Such programming is education at its best. For a young person to see how her or his city works is instructive. That child watching city council now could be your future mayor, after all.

Looming changes are prompting fears this kind of service could come to an end.

For many community media organizations, cable television franchise fees provide needed support. These fees are, in many ways, an extension of a broader practical understanding: that the airwaves belong to the public and, while we honor the free market, there should be educational programming and commitment from cable providers for core public services. Although such matters have been seemingly resolved for years, cable companies have often complained of the cost. Beyond the dollar amounts, some providers allege some communities expect a variety of other resources that end up costing the companies far more than franchise fees were supposed to be limited to.

In calling for reforms, the pro-industry Heartland Institute writes, “Local franchise authorities are of course free to request or demand ‘in kind’ services such as television service for municipal buildings or Wi-Fi hotspots in a public park, but the value of those contributions must count against the five percent cable television franchise fee cap. If not, the cap becomes completely meaningless something Congress never intended and would not accept.”

Years of campaigning for change may have won the day for industry. The FCC has proposed capping all fees to five percent, the current limit for franchise fees. Most crucial to point out is that in-kind donations, which have covered a plethora of items over the years, will be counted under the cap as part of the FCC’s consideration. For community media organizations like PEG television and radio, these changes mark a tectonic shift.

Some believe the FCC changes could be disastrous. Most media organizations already lost bids to tack fees onto internet services via cable providers as more people cut the cord and dropped cable in favor of streaming online. These outlets argued the franchise fee pool was already shrinking. The latest changes, media advocates suggest, make deeper cuts. As such, the FCC’s proposals are creating stress in media outlets nationwide.

Victor Locke, who oversees community media in Durango, Colo. said about the proposal. “This is an attempt by the industry to rewrite the rules so they don’t have to pay the franchise fees. We have eight buildings in the city that Charter Spectrum has to provide cable service to. Now that would be included [in the five percent]. This is like changing the rules in midstream. I think that’s really rubbing people the wrong way.”

One manager told his local press, “We provide all of the city council meetings, planning board meetings, Regional School Unit 1 meetings — this is one source where people can see for themselves on television what is being said. We give the whole thing. People get to see the entire meeting.” The changes, it is hinted at, could devastate the organization and effectively silence this valuable coverage.

No matter what happens, this debate is certain to continue. One can hope that all sides recognize the valuable place these media organizations play locally, and our shared desire for a rich, informed citizenry. All of us want the next generation to feel passionate and interested in leading their cities and states as well as the nation. Sustaining and expanding civic coverage will only benefit that goal.

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The post Community Broadcaster: Of Service appeared first on Radio World.

Author: Ernesto Aguilar
Posted: February 16, 2019, 2:15 am

How iHeartMedia L.A. decided to operate four FMs to allow TV antenna changes

The post We Wrap Up Our FM Cluster Repack Project appeared first on Radio World.

The incentive auction was bound to have consequences for the FM stations on Los Angeles’ Mt. Wilson, where TV and radio share tower space, often in close quarters. It became clear that this would be especially true in the vicinity of the “Post Office” site, where iHeartMedia has three of its four FMs with a fourth next door. Historically, collocated users coped with the work in the neighborhood by participating in group power reductions, but the changes now anticipated would probably require days upon days of work.

In this series, Doug Irwin has discussed the means by which iHeartMedia decided to operate its four Mt. Wilson FMs while the TV antenna changes are being made.

Because Video Road plays such an important role in the Deer Park system, it was necessary to get the communications link between the two sites going as soon as possible. The link between the Poole Building and the Post Office had to be made to work as well.

We hired a local contractor to build an antenna mount up on the top of the ice shield on the Post Office. Fortunately, we did have a clear view of Deer Park, but really only from this spot.

What I refer to as the “sun room” holds our 950 MHz antennas, which look directly back at our studio facility in Burbank, along with the 5.8 GHz dish that looks back at Video Road.

We got this set of antennas and radios up and running early on, since it provides the “backup” communications with Burbank. If Video Road is completely dead for some horrible reason, we can use our 950 MHz links, plus backup audio processors, to generate the composite.

One of the ideas that our own Matt Anderson brought up from San Diego was the idea of feeding two exgine cards by setting their IP addresses to the broadcast address of the particular network they live on, then telling the exporter to send E2X packets to that address. He had done this in San Diego, but the difference here was that the two exgine cards were at separate sites.

How would this complication affect the performance? We started early on working on that. Our new site was going to have HD, and naturally we wanted the time delay to match.

The radio link between sites carries a trunk that has eight VLANs — four of which are small ones associated with HD — specifically for the E2X packets. This idea ended up working pretty well except that we really didn’t have any way to manipulate the varying amount of time it would take for packets to transit the system. On the other hand, our IP MPXp units could be manipulated using the configurable buffer depth.

Quite a bit of time was spent trying to match these up so that the HD timing was right on. Unfortunately, that part didn’t really work. We ended up adding Inovonics Justin 808 units at Video Road for all four stations. By their placement, we got them to correct the HD delay on normal transmitters, as well as the new rigs at Deer Park. (That was another consequence of the “slave” nature of Deer Park vis-à-vis Video Road.)

As this work was going on indoors, Wireless Infrastructure Services was finishing up their work with the top of the tower, which they had to strengthen, and of course remove the old pole and batwing. They used a crane to do this.

Com Plus was hired to do the actual antenna and transmission line installation, and they made fast work of it, despite the fact that they had to take “days off” from our project to do other work they had previously committed to — on tight deadlines. As many readers are by now well aware, tower crews are in high demand, and they’re all working long days to try to accommodate all this work. We had some foggy days during this process as well, which caused all tower work to stop.

As the antenna was going up, we took delivery of the combiner from Shively. The company had to modify its original design, and that caused a delay of about two weeks on the delivery. Fortunately, that delay had no material effect on the timeline.

With the combiner and antenna installed and the transmission line connected, it was time for our regional SVPE, Tom Cox, to come up to “slug” the antenna. As it turns out, ERI had already done it at the factory, and we found that the tuning was optimized. That’s an obvious advantage to having the pole design done at the same time as the antenna — they were able to take the effect of the proximity of the pole into account and effectively match the antenna, at all four frequencies, quite well ahead of time. The highest reflected power we’re seeing is about 65 watts with 9,300 watts forward.

Naturally, as part of this process, at the end of the construction, we had to make occupied bandwidth and intermod measurements. That information was then passed on to our engineering office in Tulsa, which completed our license applications. Those have already been granted.

PERFORMANCE IN THE FIELD

With the site construction effectively done, we did drive tests in the field at night and found the coverage from Deer Park to be very much like the Video Road site. We did our first “run” of the site during the daylight/weekday hours, in order to accommodate tower climbers up on Video Road, on June 13. The results were good — not a single listener commented via phone, email or text. No one seemed to notice anything, which is, of course, what we were hoping for.

The Deer Park transmitters sound identical to those at Video Road, and even the HD delay matches up. Our goal is to be able use this site at any time and any day, and so far at least, it looks like we’ll be able to do that.

A couple of more mentions: Andy Huynh and Matt Anderson, younger members of engineering, both participated extensively in this project. Who says young people don’t want to work in radio engineering? Also, thanks to Maurice Mischook, a senior member of our engineering staff here in Los Angeles, for all of his work on the project.

Doug Irwin, CPBE AMD DRB, is vice president of engineering at iHeartMedia in Los Angeles and a technical advisor to Radio World.

Tell RW Engineering Extra about your own project management story. Email rweetech@gmail.com.

Read the first two parts of this series:

https://www.radioworld.com/news-and-business/dealing-with-repack-moving-an-fm-cluster-to-a-temporary-site

https://www.radioworld.com/news-and-business/the-adventure-continues

The post We Wrap Up Our FM Cluster Repack Project appeared first on Radio World.

Author: Doug Irwin
Posted: February 15, 2019, 5:26 pm