Preserving media assets is critical. Archiving media content not only enables assets to be remonetized, but it also empowers content creators to maximize viewer engagement and drive consumer satisfaction. Historically, the cinema industry has found media archiving challenging, with real-world instances of movie libraries on tape going up in flames, the wrong files being deleted, and critical security issues.
Yet, innovations in content delivery platforms, artificial intelligence algorithms, and cloud working practices are simplifying media archiving and enabling creative and post-production studios to unlock new levels of content monetization. This article will highlight ten capabilities to look for in a media archiving solution to improve content preservation, optimize the reuse of media, and drive revenue.
Fundamentally, an archive must keep content secure and ensure the data is authentic. Creatives and post-production studios can set the digital governance policy at the level of the object, bucket, or by object metadata criteria. Choosing an open and self-describing solution will help to future-proof the archive. Data authenticity guarantees the consistency of the checksum with stored data.
Only authorized users and applications should have access to and be able to update data. A media archive must enforce the strongest levels of user authentication wherever that data is being kept. If an archive is hosted on multiple storage locations, then the archive security will only be as strong as the weakest link. Leveraging management technology, archivists can enforce modern security at the level of data access as well as with application access and the management software itself.
All formats of data, metadata, audits, and policies should be stored in an open format that is self-describing to ensure that data, metadata, audits, and policies will continue to be supported over the long term. Archivists must be able to take advantage of all types of storage platforms, including on-premises, private cloud, public cloud, edge, and edge-cloud. No technology should be considered status quo. History has proven that storage technology is ever evolving.
AI and Machine Learning can optimize data archiving in a variety of ways, enabling intelligent data classification, automated metadata generation, enhanced search and retrieval, content-based recommendation, video analytics, and video restoration. Leveraging AIOps, archivists in the digital cinema industry can streamline tasks such as data deduplication, predictive storage management, and intelligent data retention policies.
Modern archives need costing feedback mechanisms for user chargeback and archive maintenance costs. Accurate costing feedback should support environmental information such as the electrical usage of keeping data on tiers of storage. Ultimately, costing feedback provides digital cinema professionals with insights into potential cost savings and opportunities for efficiencies.
Hostile attack intrusion alarms provide an additional layer of protection against unauthorized access or malicious activities. They detect and alert administrators, preventing or minimizing damage to the data stored in the system.
Statistical monitoring analyzes data access for anomalies or suspicious activities. This helps archivists detect potential threats or unauthorized access attempts, allowing for timely investigation and response. Access notifications inform administrators or security teams about the access events, such as logins, file modifications, or data transfers, allowing for swift identification of any unauthorized or suspicious activities to mitigate risks.
Robust content protection is essential in a modern media data management solution. Data management solutions must work with a digital rights management system to provide the strongest possible backbone for media archiving.
Typically, post-production houses generate a massive amount of video content. Storing every media asset is not financially or logistically possible. Archive solutions with advanced data management capabilities will ensure only the right content is removed from the archive.
The industry’s ability to evolve is crucial to long-term content preservation. By deploying archive solutions with advanced features — such as robust security, open data, and vendor-agnostic support — and embracing an open asset management architecture, creatives can future-proof their workflows and optimize media content availability. Adopting these strategies will ensure that all assets are AI-ready, interoperable, and well preserved for decades to come.
Jonathan Morgan is senior vice president, product and technology at Perifery.