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.
What is TV
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
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.
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.
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.
"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
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
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
Radio-Télévision de la Communauté Française de Belgique (RTBF) Bruxelles,
Studio Hamburg Fernseh Allianz GmbH (FA) Hamburg, Germany
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the detailed TV Files report as a Word 97 file (137k)
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