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WTTW Chicago and MediaRecall Announce Agreement

WTTW Chicago archives to be available stock purchasing by early 2005 (October 25, 2004)

WTTW Chicago and MediaRecall today announced a significant agreement in the world of public television to digitize decades of video footage and eventually place most of the stations total collection on the web for stock video purchase. The WTTW archives will be updated each month with several hundred new, additional clips. The agreement creates ongoing value for a priceless video archive, which is currently difficult to access.

Under the terms of the agreement, MediaRecall, a leading professional services firm in the emerging field of Media Asset Management will scan, digitize, and index WTTW Chicago video archives. MediaRecall will then design and launch a dedicated web site, also accessible from, allowing any user to review the WTTW archives and download low-resolution files without charge. Once users identify the final footage required for their productions, they can easily purchase high-resolution duplicates for final editing, in the format of their choice. Current stock sites require users to pay substantial fees to download low-resolution files they may not actually use in final edits.

?This in an incredible win for WTTW Chicago in so many ways, said Barry OConnell, director of licensing business development for WTTW Chicago. ?We are unlocking a priceless video archive and making it available, via the web, to anyone worldwide. We have long realized the value of placing our video archive online, but organizing and indexing 50 years of video by ourselves was daunting. MediaRecall will provide the skilled staff needed to achieve our project in a few months, allowing a new and much needed resource stream to be available to support the development of WTTW Chicagos new programming initiatives.

?The technology has finally turned the corner to create cost-effective web access to extensive video archives, said MediaRecall chief executive officer Robin T. Rutledge. ?From long-standing companies with decades of both print and video materials, to independent video producers, to public television stations like WTTW Chicago, the technology is now available to turn rooms full of under-utilized video into valuable stock footage. We will begin our work with WTTW Chicago in October, anticipating the launch of the stock video archive on the web to come in the first quarter of 2005.

To make the WTTW Chicago archive accessible via the web, MediaRecall video archivists first play individual videotapes through a tape deck that converts the analog video footage into low-resolution digital files. Customized software then analyzes the footage and breaks it down into individual scenes, categorized by content and topic. Users interested in reviewing WTTW Chicago footage will log onto the dedicated web site and enter search criteria, very much like logging onto any search engine. The user inputs descriptions of the video they are searching for, such as ?Chicago, skyline, night. The user is then presented with video scenes embedded in WTTW Chicago video productions -- from the last 50 years which include at least one scene of the Chicago skyline at night.

Once a production is in the final editing stage and the editor or producer has identified the exact footage required, they can then log onto the WTTW archives site and order the exact high-resolution file suitable for final editing. The file will arrive in any high-resolution format the user requires.

WTTW Chicago intends to store the digital archive in-house. MediaRecall will update the digital archive as WTTW Chicago produces new programming, keeping the video archive current for users and purchasers at the web site.

About WTTW Chicago
Since 1955, WTTW Chicago has been a source of education, information and entertainment, providing Chicago, the Midwest and the nation will television programming of the highest quality. WTTW Chicago has an honored history as a center for original television production and as a leader in broadcast technology. Its program offerings range in scope from the arts, humanities, science, public affairs and live concert performances to an extensive slate of engaging programs for children.

WTTW Chicagos signal and program service reaches more than 65 percent of Illinois population as well as areas of Indiana, Wisconsin, and Michigan. WTTW Chicago reaches more than 6 million regular viewers and is regarded as the nations most-watched public television station. In addition to its regional importance, WTTW Chicagos National Production division produces original programming, like Soundstage, that is carried nationwide.

WTTW Chicagos productions have been awarded broadcastings most prestigious award, the George Foster Peabody Award, on seven occasions, been bestowed with Columbia-DuPont and numerous other national awards and have received more than 300 Emmy awards for the Chicago Academy of Television Arts and Sciences.

Additional information about WTTW Chicago, its programs, public outreach and other services is available at

About MediaRecall
MediaRecall, Inc. ( is a leading Media Asset Management professional services firm providing technology-neutral, web-based client solutions. Founded in 2003 by experienced industry professionals, MediaRecall partners with clients who want to understand the technology available to unlock the value of their visual assets (video, photography and other items), customize a business process and technology solution to easily access their entire visual archive via the web, and then implement that solution cost-effectively and quickly with no increase in permanent staff.

MediaRecall is a privately held company with headquarters in the Chicago Metro area.


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Related Keywords:WTTW, WTTW Chicago, MediaRecall, stock, digitize, video footage, Media Asset Management, archives, Barry O?Connell, Robin T. Rutledge, stock footage,

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