The transition from “Serial-Digital” to high-definition encoding has opened up new possibilities for regional broadcasters. More local stations than ever are taking advantage of multiplexing to bring quality content to a wider audience.
These developments introduced content delivery over the internet, eliminating the need for trucking tapes and linear satellite feeds. Along with this progress come the challenges of file formatting, acquiring media and transfer to on-air devices.
For Northwest Broadcasting-owned KAYU-28 in Spokane, the FOX affiliate would spend a total of 24 man-hour handling syndication, on average.
It took two hours of transfer, flipping and preparation to ready each one-hour program for air.
Now, the station has reduced a month’s workload by 400 man-hours.
How did KAYU, which transmits seven channels, do it?
ARAMYST automated workflow was acquired to help KAYU six of those channels with syndicated programming.
“What once took hours to download and manually trim a segment took 10 minutes,” Lead Master Control Operator Robert Cram said about the new system from NVerzion.
ARAMYST works by using a set of definitions to automatically transfer the appropriate files from PitchBlue and Pathfire syndication servers to network storage. Next, it renames the files in consistency with station traffic’s naming convention. Then, using included metadata, ARAMYST auto-segments the files, instantly preparing them for playout. During this process, the system incorporates network commercials into the segments, according to the station’s barter agreement, while leaving gaps for local commercials. And, it will automatically insert specific ID’s for channel branding. The only time required is the time it takes to transfer media without transcoding. Operators then perform optional quality control, with included NFinityView software, and schedule their commercial inserts.
Cram said, “Once I was done [configuring the system, the programs] started to download automatically. After they were done downloading, I checked the segments against the generic run down and everything matched. Barter breaks were correct, number of segments matched, local breaks matched and landed in the right spots.”