The project application aims to utilise multimedia technology in the advertising industry. A pilot pan-European network will be created to help actors to advertise themselves via publicity catalogues. They will be able to promote their capabilities using such means as artists, model or producer portfolios. The network will also support the creation of printed or electronic commercials. The project will explore the provision of supporting facilities for all stages in the product development process. That is from initial brainstorming sessions, through content creation, to the post production stage.
The proposed project will study the feasibility of a pilot application that will improve the content and value of electronic information in the production, distribution and retrieval areas of the information chain as it appears in the Advertising Industry. This very large economic sector is by nature a user of multimedia information and has great visibility. Therefore, a successful pilot application in this area would not only provide financial benefits but also enhance the value and visibility of the Information Engineering RTD effort.
In the Advertising Industry application, multimedia telematics can enhance cost effectiveness and speed of production in many areas. The technologies involved are: electronic (hypermedia) catalogues and advertising agency commercials, electronic image banks, electronic artist/model/actor portfolios involving still images, audio and video implemented with multimedia databases, CSCW tools to aid in brainstorming sessions and very high quality audio-visual signal transmission for post production. In addition, since the application involves financial activities possibly involving large sums of money, means of authentication (e.g. electronic signatures) as well as methods for charging/billing and maintaining exclusive rights to raw material will be required. The above activities involve a wide range of users, from completely technologically inexperienced people (e.g. advertisers) to highly experienced systems users (e.g. in production studios). It is therefore evidence that the application area considered in this proposal involves the development of a variety of user interfaces and services tailored to wide ranging needs as well as it poses an interesting management problem in orchestrating the complex interactions between industrial actors. On the other hand, the variety of needs, ranging from relatively simple electronic newsletters, image/video database browsing to authentication of electronic documents, provides a very interesting set of technological challenges to either integrate existing technologies or develop new ones. The pilot application is expected to generate revenue to information providers (e.g. image banks), talent agents and advertisers by providing all necessary information for the advertising industry in multimedia form.
The proposed study will define a project cluster that contributes to Information Engineering goals by addressing all three areas, namely, Electronic Publishing, Information Dissemination and Information Retrieval. In electronic publishing, multimedia authoring tools will be addressed as well as issues pertaining to co-operative working. In the area of Information Dissemination, database design and management, billing/pricing, intellectual property and transaction authentication issues will be examined. In the area of Information Retrieval, issues related to information space navigation and information discovery will be addressed as well as issues related to multimedia information presentation.
The study will contain a thorough analysis of the technical requirements for a pilot application in advertising regarding: 1.) methods and technology required to transfer demanding multimedia data, 2.) techniques to achieve interoperability among diverse hardware and software platforms, 3.) retrieval mechanisms for navigation and information discovery for non-technical users, 4.) presentation tools for high quality multimedia data, 5.) required charging policies and methods for billing and intellectual property protection, 6.) methods to ensure the validity of financial transactions concluded through the network, 7.) guidelines for assessing both technical and economic achievements of the cluster of projects.
The proposing consortium is strengthened by the presence of advertising and publishing companies in addition to technology providers. Their role is to guide the project by providing user requirements and feedback and to evaluate technical solutions. In addition, these participants will conduct a European level survey of advertisers in order to determine the financial viability of a network for advertisers and the associated services.