News emerged recently that the BBC has
abandoned a digital production system developed by Siemens, saying the project
had been badly managed and outpaced by changing technology.
The BBC’s “Digital
Media Initiative” was awarded to Siemens in 2008 and was designed to streamline
the broadcaster’s workflows, in particular the management of its archives. The
collapse of the project led to the suspension of the BBC’s Chief Technology
Officer John Linwood.
Tony Hall, the
BBC’s director general said the DMI had “wasted a huge amount of licence fee
payers’ money,” adding that “I have serious concerns about how we managed this
According to the
BBC Blog, “the first
parts of DMI were rolled out across the BBC in 2012, including the Fabric
Archive Database—a system to allow users to search and request access to the
BBC’s archive of tapes and other media. In addition, wide ranging
technical infrastructure was installed to underpin the move to a digital,
tapeless way of working for the future.”
2012, the broadcaster decided to put the project on hold to conduct a review
and concluded last month that “it
is clear DMI’s ambitions have not been met,” according to Dominic Coles, BBC
Director of Operations. Coles added that a wider-ranging investigation will be
conducted to determine what went wrong and that disciplinary action could be
taken. But Coles also stressed that the need for a comprehensive state of the
art digital production system remains.
need to work digitally and ambitiously remains but, moving forward, the BBC
will deliver this digital environment in more manageable stages with stricter
project management controls and clearer objectives that reflect the current
business and technological requirements,” Coles said.
For more details, see...
BBC was Warned That its DMI Would Fail, at Information Age
BBC Blows £98 Million on Digital Media Initiative, at IEEE Spectrum
We may never know the true cost of the BBC's latest disaster – but it'll be a lot more than £100 million, at The Telegraph