AP Online Video Network Taps thePlatform

The Associated Press has selected
thePlatform, a Seattle-based video technology provider, to launch a more
flexible, enhanced version of its Online Video Network, which distributes AP’s
acclaimed video content to more than 2,000 newspaper, broadcast and other media
Web sites throughout the U.S.
OVN’s technology platform, initially provided by
Microsoft, will now be licensed from thePlatform, an industry leader in the
broadband video management and publishing market, which is a subsidiary of
Comcast. In addition to offering enhanced content, AP will offer network
affiliates for the first time a fully embeddable video player for video
destination pages. The new system will also support higher video
quality.
Rollout of the new technology platform, to be
completed by December, will provide network affiliates with greater ability to
showcase their own news video as well as to offer higher video quality for AP’s
coverage of world events, which most recently included the Summer Olympics in Beijing, the U.S.
presidential campaign and the hurricanes that hit Haiti, Louisiana and
Texas.
AP’s Online Video Network provides video
reports specifically designed for viewing on the Internet. Brought to market in
2006, the network now reaches 61 million unduplicated unique visitors through
its 2,100 affiliate sites.
“We’ve been very aggressive in providing top
stories and breaking news video coverage wherever it happens,” said AP Executive
Editor Kathleen Carroll. “For instance, we chased half a dozen hurricanes over
Florida and the Gulf Coast and produced scores of video clips including
first-person accounts, extensive raw video and live streaming. We also made
available to OVN affiliates last week never-before-seen 1973 video on the
release of John McCain when he was a North Vietnam prisoner of war.”
“For perspective, this is easily one of the
largest online video initiatives to occur in 2008,” said Ian Blaine, CEO of
thePlatform. “In many ways, it’s like launching thousands of individual video
sites at the same time, and we’re very proud to help the AP provide broader
video coverage to millions of viewers.”
“The new version of the network will make it
easier for our affiliates to incorporate compelling news video on their Web
sites,” said Jane Seagrave, AP’s senior vice president of Global Product
Development. “As video becomes the storytelling medium of choice on the
Internet, we’re improving the content as well as the technical environment.”