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SMPTE to hold inaugural meeting on broadband distribution standard

The Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers said Oct. 7 that it is forming a technology committee to standardize mastering and packaging formats for content distributed over broadband networks.

Broadband 23B will meet for the first time on Oct. 27, 2008, at 5:15 p.m. in the Renaissance Hollywood Hotel in Hollywood, CA, during the SMPTE 2008: Annual Tech Conference & Expo. Participation in Broadband 23B is open to all entertainment technology professionals, particularly those in the content creation, distribution, consumer electronics, IT and retail sectors.

According to SMPTE engineering VP Wendy Aylsworth, the industry needs to adopt “standard content and container formats for the entire electronic distribution ecosystem.” The lack of interoperability standards means that content can only be accessed on “a limited subset of services and devices,” she said.

Broadband 23B will create a standard to benefit consumers and allow producers and distributors to deploy content across all broadband services. It also will work to enhance the consumer experience by establishing procedures for uniform captions and subtitles.

The committee’s activities will include: detailing the requirements for a universal file container; deciding upon its technical specifications; examining essence formats; developing content identification procedures; and defining structural and descriptive metadata.

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