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Ad industry, SMPTE seek standardized coding for video content

The Coalition for Innovative Media Measurement (CIMM) and the Society for Motion Picture and Television Engineers (SMPTE) have teamed to generate widespread industry adoption of Ad-ID and Entertainment Identifier Registry (EIDR) coding for all advertising and audio and video assets.

Ad-ID is an advertising asset coding system for use with all forms of advertising media, including print, video and voice. EIDR is a universal character string that uniquely identifies an audiovisual object. It is similar to a UPC code that is used to identify physical packaged goods. EIDR can be used for both physical and digital video objects that are part of the movie and television supply chain.

At the center of the effort by the two groups is the establishment of an optimal open standard technical system for the actual binding of Ad-ID and EIDR identifiers to video assets. The media industry currently has no standardized, open method of directly associating content identifiers with the audiovisual content itself. 

CIMM’s advocacy platform, commonly known as Trackable Asset Cross-Platform Identification (TAXI), calls for all sides of the media ecosystem to coalesce around unique identifying codes — similar to the ubiquitous Universal Product Codes (UPC) used in many other industries.

These codes are provided by either Ad-ID, the industry standard for identifying advertising assets across all media platforms, or EIDR, a global registry for unique identification of movie and TV content. 

Users who embrace the Ad-ID or EIDR coding as well as CIMM and SMPTE’s forthcoming open standard technical system can better monetize their video assets across distribution platforms. They can, the groups said, increase efficiency and accuracy of media workflows and improve crossplatform media measurement by making it easier to track assets across television, broadband and mobile video.

“Today, the transfer of content throughout the media ecosystem is rife with thousands of siloed, proprietary avenues that have resulted in massive inefficiencies, errors and waste,” said Jane Clarke, CIMM’s Managing Director. “The growing support for the TAXI initiative is a testament to the frustration with the existing system and a sincere willingness to effect change.”

As part of this initiative, CIMM and SMPTE formed a study group comprising CIMM members and representatives from media organizations, ad agencies and vendors. The group is meeting regularly to discuss the issues and challenges, and ultimately, to agree on the best binding process to enact.

The study group held its first session Aug. 13, and the discussion focused on creating a roadmap to define such things as use cases, technical requirements and binding technology candidates, all of which will provide valuable input to the group’s expected report. The outcome will be a key next step for the TAXI initiative and successful industrywide adoption. 

Technical system providers are encouraged to participate and can contact the study group chairman Chris Lennon.