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Image TV Files - IPR Rights for TV Programmes

By shortening substantially the research time needed to evaluate content, quality and ownership, this project is raising the quality and diversity of European television programming and multimedia production and giving rights holders, television producers and distributors access to hundreds of buyers.
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What is TV Files?

TV Files is a supplier of broadband Internet, digital video and satellite data-casting communications. Developed in association with the European Broadcasting Union (EBU), the TV Files screenings on demand service is designed to provide European tv programme buyers and multimedia producers with all the decision making data they need to evaluate international productions, including intellectual property rights (IPR) and programme information.

Screenings on demand is a combination of information website, video-on-demand, and interactive television channel dedicated to TV programme buyers.

TV Files Website The fast-growing TV Files video database is already supplying data on broadcasting and multimedia rights for some 5000 television programmes provided by two hundred producers. The range currently available includes documentaries, shows, sports, tv series and feature films from most European countries, as well as from Africa, Australia, Canada, Japan and the USA.

In order to increase protection of producers rights, only registered, pre-checked buyers are being given access to the screenings on demand system at present.

"TV Files offers a complete turnkey system that ensures 100% broadcast quality transmission," says Project Co-ordinator, Giovanni Giusti of Rome-based TV Files SpA (TVF). "In fact the whole system is easier to administer than an office Local Area Network (LAN)".

Eighty major European tv networks have now been equipped with TV Files digital decoders, enabling them to receive video abstracts of material either automatically or on demand. Now that the system is fully established, their number is expected to rise dramatically, giving rights holders, world-wide television producers and distributors access to hundreds of European buyers.

How it Works

Based on IP (Internet Protocol) over DVB (digital video broadcasting), TV Files handles secure bursts of data, transmitted by satellite link, cable or digital terrestrial networks to PCs, decoders or other IP devices.

TV Files System Architecture

In the screenings on demand application, producers send their data and video to the TV Files service centre. Extracts of each programme are encoded at television quality (MPEG-2 at 3.5Mbit/sec) and at "video streaming" quality (Quicktime at 256Kbit/sec), for viewing respectively on TV Files decoders or directly on the website.

TV Files Search Results An internet browser enables users of the system to search content in real time by category, territory and rights availability, and to request the download of video clips. The TV Files Video Centre collects the requests and transmits the video clips to the recipients, who can either view data during transmission or record it for later viewing. The material is watermarked with the TV Files logo throughout. All satellite transmissions are encrypted for additional security.

In addition to extracts, the full programme can be requested for viewing, and is sent overnight via satellite after approval by the rights holder.

TV Files Details "TVF builds personalised networks for corporations and organisations based on the same technology originally developed for the screenings on demand service. The design of the system is adapted for each customer according to technology and content constraints, explains Mr. Giusti. "Since it is based on IP protocols, it can be scaled to work over a regular extra-network or a dedicated fibre-optics network, as well as over satellite links."

What has been Achieved?

In June 2000, TVF signed an agreement with Sun Microsystems to supply European content providers and internet service providers with distribution of video content on-line, thus exploiting the enormous potential offered by broadband connections.

A new partnership agreement between TVF and the international satellite consortium EUTELSAT was announced in September 2000 and finalised in December 2000, with Eutelsat becoming a TV Files shareholder. "EUTELSATs investment in TV Files" said Mr. Giuliano Beretta, Director General of EUTELSAT, during the October 27th presentation of the agreement at SatExpo "will be invaluable in terms of experience and know-how regarding satellite transmission of rich multimedia contents".

Among multimedia applications developed by TVF is a facility marketed through Unisys Italia to create and update a tv news remote database aimed at print journalists. The system records and indexes tv news in real time before information is disseminated via PC monitors with interactive access.

TV Files has enjoyed considerable publicity, especially in the Italian press and has also been presented at several exhibitions, including MILIA, the Worlds Interactive Content Marketplace and MIPCOM, the international film and programme market for television, video, cable and satellite.

The participants in the project have also had to refocus their efforts to take account of dramatic changes in the multimedia market place.

"Since the TV Files project began, the whole market of IPR on audiovisual material has been revolutionised by the emergence of webcasting, the delivery of streamed video content over the Internet through a browser interface," comments Mr. Giusti. "This, in addition to dramatic growth in Internet access and wider availability of fast connections, has created a new market of webcasting IPR, with very different characteristics than either broadcasting or multimedia markets."



Mr. R Colasanti
TV Files SpA (TVF)
Via Groenlandia 31
IT 00144 ROMA
Email (email removed)

Other Partners
Radio-Télévision de la Communauté Française de Belgique (RTBF) Bruxelles, Belgium
Studio Hamburg Fernseh Allianz GmbH (FA) Hamburg, Germany


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 Last updated on 28-03-01

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