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This event took place on Twitter Spaces on Feb. 24. Access the archived event on Twitter Spaces here: Create: What Intelligent Content Means for Content Creators. Alternately, a recording of the conversation is available below.
Read M+E Daily‘s Coverage of the Event
by Jeff Berman Cognizant, Entertainment ID Registry (EIDR) and MESA executives, along with other industry leaders and experts and producers who have entered the world of virtual and data led production joined forces on Feb. 24 to take part in the NAB Amplify networking event “Creating Intelligent Content,” held on Twitter Spaces.
Neal Romanek, editor of FEED magazine, moderated the online event.
The event provided a forum for participants to share wisdom, advice and insight about what intelligent content means for content creators. Attendees had the opportunity to ask questions, share their experiences and make new connections.
Specifically, the speakers took a deep dive into how data, cloud computing, artificial intelligence and machine learning are transforming the creation of content. Speakers discussed tangible technology facts alongside projections about the future.
The Significance of Intelligent Content
Asked what intelligent content means to him, Eddie Vaca, CEO of cloud video production platform 90 Seconds, said: “For us here at 90, it’s about creating content or stories that actually drive action.”
Noting that he works with many different brands that are “creating massive amounts of content,” he explained: “Intelligent content from a brand standpoint is something that … you can kind of use over and over again. Some evergreen content that they’re creating [they are] also assembling in a way that it doesn’t feel that it’s being reused because brands want that kind of exclusiveness to the content that they’re using. They don’t want to seem like they’re just kind of purchasing stock content or footage from different places or that they’re just reusing assets they’ve already had. So when it comes to intelligent [content and] distributing that content, it is about using it in a way that they can grow from it but also where it looks new and fresh as they put it out into market.”
Vaca stressed the importance of scale. Noting that his company is a global production house, he said: “If you’re working on something in the US, we can take that same asset, same brand and drop it right into France and recreate or reuse again intelligent content and spin up the exact same thing regionalized for that brand.”
Mary Yurkovic, director of Smart Content for MESA, agreed that localization is important.
Collaboration is also key when it comes to intelligent content, she said, explaining it is important to “collaborate with co-workers wherever they are to make this content super smart so they can maintain a brand’s integrity and get out meaningful content to the universe.”
The Ongoing Content Explosion
The need to make more content than ever is also a significant issue “because we’re in the middle of a content explosion right now inside of our industry,” according to Guy Finley, MESA president and CEO.
“Studios that used to do anywhere between 75 and 100 projects a year are now doing between 750 and 1,000, so it is speaking to kind of where our business is going and it’s mostly attributed to streaming and global access to content via all these streaming services,” Finley said.
“And I’m not just talking about the ‘seven sisters’ that we all know and love,” including the major studios streamers by name, he stressed. We also need to “think of the 200 other over-the-top service providers that are serving local, regional and national content but just not necessarily America,” he said.
He went on to explain: “When you talk about what is intelligent content, you’ve got to speak to the bits [and bytes] that surround that content and how we enrich that content when we create it. So, if there’s something that’s been created and could be re-used and re-purposed in another piece of content, we actually can do that because that’s the way we’ve made content for years. You would never know so much stuff ends up on the cutting room floor and never gets reused ever again.”
For the past seven years, MESA has been “really driving that idea that the more data you infuse into the product and the more you don’t strip things away, you essentially keep all of that metadata associated with that content as you greenlit it, and created it, and then as you distributed it,” the better off you are.
It’s convenient, after all, when data is “always on and available in various forms, free and monetized,” he said. It is important to make sure that the data about the content goes with the content because sometimes the data is “even more important than the content itself,” he added.
Intelligent Content’s Important to IT Firms, Also
“For the folks who are listening and … thinking why is a big IT firm here talking about the content side?” Tiran Dagan, chief digital officer at Cognizant, pointed out that they “service the enterprise customers [and] all of those big brands that you had mentioned.”
And the way that Cognizant looks at it is “intelligent content is across the entire value chain,” Dagan said, explaining that intelligent content being produced could be related to how an organization introduces automation to create scale.”
Cognizant has, for example, “clients that we’ve helped create automated content production platforms [for], where they can [take] elements and patch them together clearly more on the low end of quality all the way to custom creative … on the production side,” Dagan noted.
But organizations also produce the content and they package it to distribute it, and “intelligent content formation is in every part of that supply chain,” he said, adding: “There is intelligence in every aspect of producing, creating and distributing.”
A New Format
“Intelligent content has been around for ages,” according to Jonathan Glazier, a media consultant, entertainment producer and director. “Since the days of The Muppet Show, we would produce M&E tracks so that you could re-purpose The Muppet Show in any territory in the world with the music and effects so nobody ever had to redo the music and effects,” he recalled, adding: “They just put on new voices. That’s the kind of first example in my career that I came across … re-purposing.”
And now he is “about to embark on a format that I came up with which is being produced in Asia, where we have the need …. to fully automate that kind of thing,” he said. It’s using artificial intelligence to “grab the highlights of streams, and we all know there are lots of examples of intelligence software that will grab a gamer stream and just pick the highs and lows,” he noted.
“There’s still a human being at the end of it that makes sure that you know you can weave that into a story but I think artificial content goes across the whole board…. We don’t just make opening titles, we make sure we make opening titles with intelligent layers so that in any language you can re-purpose the same base title and then put the foreign language title over the top,” he said. While this concept has “been around for a long time,” he said: “I think it’s been incredibly labor intensive and I welcome anything that Cognizant can [do to] cut out the repetitive tedium of doing that.”
“And I don’t mind how intelligent it gets … and I’m not frightened of it. I think it’s a good thing,” he added.
Hollie Choi, EIDR executive director, pointed out it’s “important to have authoritative sources” for the data you have, such as when you’re training your machine learning.
Concluding the online event, Vaca and Pedro Widmar, production services manager with 90 Seconds, added a few brief suggestions.
“If you’re a brand” it is important to think globally and act locally, Vaca said. “Hyper-localized content is going to take you further and then, if you are creator, keep innovating,” he suggested. “It is important to keep pushing that envelope from a creative standpoint and it is a sure way to not be replaced by the robots,” he added.
Widmar’s advice was to “try everything, make everything, keep pushing that envelope and don’t worry about AI; it’s only coming to help.”
What’s Intelligent Content All About?
In our February Twitter Spaces event, thought leaders and producers shared advice and insight about what intelligent content (IC) means for content creators. The event offered a deep dive into how data, cloud computing, AI (artificial intelligence) and ML (machine learning) are transforming the creation of content. Panelists discussed tangible tech facts alongside projections about the future.
The event featured guest speakers from companies at the vanguard of Intelligent Content, including MESA (Media & Entertainment Services Alliance), Special Circumstances, 90 Seconds, MEDCA (M&E Data Center Alliance), EIDR (Entertainment Identifier Registry), Feed Magazine, and Cognizant.
- Neal Romanek (event moderator), Editor, Feed Magazine
- Jonathan Glazier, Media Consultant, Executive Producer and Director, Jonathan Glazier Media
- Guy Finley, President and CEO, MESA
- Hollie Choi, Executive Director, EIDR
- Mary Yurkovic, Director of Smart Content, MESA
- Tiran Dagan, Chief Digital Officer, Cognizant
- Eddie Vaca, U.S., Growth & Platform Monetization, 90 Seconds
- Pedro Widmar, Content Creator, Fyne Agency
Follow Us on Twitter
In addition to following NAB Show on Twitter (@NABShow), please consider following our speakers: Neal Romanek is @rabbitandcrow, Jonathan Glazier is @jonathanglazier, Guy Finley is @MandEdaily, Mary Yurkovic is @chicagoMY, Eddie Vaca is @eddievaca, and Tiran Dagan is @DaganTiran.
What is Twitter Spaces?
A Twitter Spaces event is a live audio-only conversation that takes place on Twitter. Our event on Thursday, Feb. 24, will feature moderated conversation with a group of subject matter experts. The format leaves room for dialogue between panelists and event participants, with the opportunity for questions and conversation.
How to join a Space: Spaces are public and you can join one in one of three ways. Each Space has a public link that a host or listener can include in a Tweet, or share via a Direct Message. Live Spaces featuring a speaker or host you follow will also appear at the top of your timeline, highlighted in purple. Twitter has much more information about Twitter Spaces, including a rundown of how to use Spaces, a Spaces FAQ, and details about the Spaces user interface.
What you’ll need to join: A Twitter account, which you can create at twitter.com. Follow @NABShow on Twitter for notifications about the event. You can participate using Twitter in a web browser or mobile app.