One of the tricky things in NoTube is that there are many different metadata formats that are both provided and consumed by the various services that will make up the NoTube system. To make sure that the metadata used is understood correctly by every service, the alignment and conversion of metadata is necessary. Regarding the metadata which concerns TV content, the WP2 team has achieved three major steps in the past months. First, we have tried to gather all the requirements of the three NoTube Use Cases. This has been achieved working together closely with the use case partners. Then, we took a comprehensive look around to see which existing metadata models appear as potential candidates. Last but not least, we checked the most promising models against the use case requirements to identify the most suitable candidates.
For the metadata that is provided together with TV content by content providers such as RAI, we decided to use the Broadcast Metadata Exchange Format (BMF) as the input interface format to the Service Provider side. BMF is a powerful metadata model which covers all metadata in the life-cycle of a TV production – from the initial planning and the pre-production all the way to distribution and archiving. It is intended to be used as an exchange model by systems that are interchanging metadata in different steps of the TV production process to increase the interoperability between the many systems involved in this process. Such a uniform interface which is able to handle various broadcast metadata formats will make NoTube future-proof and enable other broadcasters to connect to the system.
On the Home Ambient side, we will be using TV-Anytime which has been identified to meet the requirements of the NoTube use cases. TV-Anytime is an internationally agreed and accepted metadata schema in the TV consumer domain already widely used in consumer devices like PVRs etc. After evaluating the requirements for the Service Provider side, we figured that TV-Anytime will suffice for these needs as well.
However, a bit more difficult, for advertisement metadata there is currently no common format around used for TV ads. Thanks to IRT’s involvement in the European Broadcasting Union (EBU), we learned about the collaboration between EBU and egta, the trade association of television and radio sales houses. Together, they are working out a unified metadata scheme for ads which we will be using for adaptive advertising in NoTube. We already discussed the preliminary schema with the EBU and provided feedback from NoTube’s ads experts back to EBU and egta.
To allow an exchange of information and thus the interoperability between the Service Provider and the Home Ambient side, a metadata transformation is required. The internal transformations as well as the transformation of external sources into the NoTube metadata formats will be tackled in WP2 in the coming months.