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In the digital asset management (DAM) business, you wind up hearing this dilemma all the time: my company has a huge library of source and broadcast-quality assets in our local DAM - which took a huge investment of both time and money to buy, configure, and catalogue - but no one is using it! Erik Freid, VP of product management at MediaSilo, reports.


content, is that the system that took so much time, effort, and money to build is, in fact, too complex, too stationary, and not accessible enough to actually use. The result of this unfortunate situation - wherein assets are your capital, but no one can actually get to them - is a vicious cycle of effort duplication. This might manifest in the form of sending yet another team out to get the same establishing shot that you know is already in the library somewhere. Or paying for celebrity stock footage that you already own. By placing barriers to content, companies industry-wide are decreasing the efficiency of access to their own content, their own property, their own lifeblood. For many enterprise broadcast


entities, the question becomes: how do you take these repositories and make them easily accessible to the people who need them so that your valuable resources can be efficiently discovered, used, and reused? In the current climate of cloud


everything, the immediate answer might be: put it on the cloud. But, unfortunately the solution of cloud storage comes with it’s own plethora of downsides. Sure, it provides access from anywhere, but what enterprise company handling privacy-sensitive, pre-release materials wants to open a security DMZ (‘demilitarised zone’ aka


The hybrid DAM O


ften, the problem for the marketing departments, production departments, contributors, freelancers, executives and clients who need to access


Often, the problem for the marketing departments, production departments, contributors, freelancers, executives and clients who need to access content, is that the system that took so much time, effort, and money to build is, in fact, too complex, too stationary, and not accessible enough to actually use.


unprotected web server port)? And, beyond the potential security issues, storing an entire library’s worth of source-sized files on the cloud is simply not yet a practical solution from a storage cost or file transport perspective. So, if a local DAM is too stationary,


but converting entirely to cloud storage is too costly and leaves content too vulnerable, then it seems the answer must lie somewhere in between. This is one of the many reasons that MediaSilo, along with many other cloud-based SaaS (software as a service) providers, are turning to a hybrid approach that takes advantage of XML data exchange or API (Application Programming Interface, aka a series of cues that can allow software systems to communicate with one another) for custom integration. This allows in-house or 3rd party integrators to create client-specific hybrid solutions to find a safe and solid middle ground. Results of this hybrid approach vary,


but the goal is consistent: allow source files to be stored locally, while small proxy versions of them are uploaded to the cloud for review and discovery. These proxies can then be used for collaboration, approvals, and sharing - while still maintaining a connection to the secure local source through the proactive use of metadata. Within MediaSilo, we have a


number of clients who have implemented similar strategies, but the following two examples really


64 l ibe l september/october 2012 l www.ibeweb.com DAM in the cloud


Client A provides IT asset management as a service (ITAM) for a large industrial manufacturer of a variety of video content - from training videos to advertising content that includes video, audio and images.


Client A.


This client maintains a local DAM that houses all its content in an LTO (Linear-Tape Open) library. At ingest into the local system, a watermarked proxy and a metadata payload are simultaneously uploaded into the cloud system, as well.


show the potential of a little creative flexibility. Client A is a straightforward local DAM that has been linked with our cloud-based system. Client B has added a cloud element to an existing SAN (Storage Area Network, aka a shared storage system that allows multiple users to access files simultaneously). Both of these setups were


implemented by 3rd party integrators who used our powerful API to meet their client’s need for secure end user- access to large local repositories via the Internet.


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