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Media supply chain

From EverybodyWiki Bios & Wiki

A media supply chain refers to the process needed to create, manage, and deliver media from a point of origin (content providers, creators, and owners) to end-point consumers using different devices and platforms.[1]

Any company that is responsible for creating, storing, processing, managing, and distributing media is a part of the supply chain. This includes sports leagues working with broadcasters and media rights licensees; production studios working with theatres, TV stations, VOD platforms, and OTT platforms; and game developers and testers.[2]

For example:

  • When the streaming service CBS All Access rebranded as Paramount+, it became the end-point distributor of library content held and created by cable networks MTV, Comedy Central, VH1, BET, Nickelodeon, and the Paramount Network.[3]
  • A+E Networks, owned by Walt Disney and Hearst, controls licensing rights for thousands of hours of library content.[4] It temporarily licenses this content to distributors including Peacock, Hulu, and Discovery.[4] Supply chain: Walt Disney and Hearst - A+E Networks - distributors.[4]


In general, a media supply chain consists of content preparation and distribution.[5] It can be broken down into:

  • Media and metadata acquisition: the first step in the process and an ongoing part of the process; required to initiate the rest of the workflow.[6] In addition to describing content, metadata is added as media moves throughout the supply chain lifecycle, updating companies on where and how the media originated, and how it made it to its current point.[7][8]
  • Quality control (QC) and validation: the media must be analyzed to ensure it complies with all technical requirements (for example, a specific delivery format), as well as all content requirements (in case it will be distributed in a region that restricts certain imagery).[2]
  • Editing: this includes media editing for both creative and content moderation use cases, such as the process of adding captions, additional graphics, different languages, changing a video to meet local specifications on language/nudity/violence, and more.[2][9]
  • Transcoding: the process of converting media files into a certain format with a desired bitrate in preparation for distribution.[10]
  • Distribution and Packaging: media is shared (distribution) and, if on certain platforms, is organized and scheduled for consumption (packaging).[11]

Metadata usage[edit]

Metadata is captured and updated as content moves throughout the supply chain in order to support a number of different use cases, including to inform companies of the exact content of the media and how it made it to its current point in the lifecycle.[12][13]


  1. "The Cloud Media Supply Chain Technology and Engineering Emmy Award® goes to…". Amazon Web Services. 2020-01-15. Retrieved 2021-04-07.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 "Case Study: Inter-company content exchange for the modern media supply chain, an explainer". NewscastStudio. Retrieved 2021-04-07.
  3. Adalian, Josef (2021-03-04). "Which Streaming Service Do You Actually Want?". Vulture. Retrieved 2021-05-27.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 Steinberg, Brian; Steinberg, Brian (2020-12-09). "Rivals Discovery and A+E Networks Forge Streaming Alliance". Variety. Retrieved 2021-07-21.
  5. "SDVI article: Cloud-native Media Supply Chains in Plain English". sdvistage. Retrieved 2021-04-07.
  6. "Column: The five pillars of media production – considerations in creating your media supply chain". NewscastStudio. Retrieved 2021-04-07.
  7. "How AI and data science can improve supply chains". Retrieved 2021-04-07.
  8. "Rights and Metadata Management for Media". mindtree. Unknown parameter |url-status= ignored (help)
  9. "Using ML in the media supply chain to optimize content creation: How to improve efficiency for operations teams and automate workflows with ML metadata". Amazon Web Services. 2019-11-07. Retrieved 2021-04-07.
  10. "What Is Transcoding and Why Is It Critical for Streaming? | Wowza". Wowza Media Systems. 2019-12-31. Retrieved 2021-04-07.
  11. "An overview of TP implications in the media supply chain". International Tax Review. Retrieved 2021-04-07.
  12. Oles, Murray. "Linking Supply Chain Metadata to Products". Retrieved 2021-06-04.
  13. "Using ML in the media supply chain to optimize content creation: How to improve efficiency for operations teams and automate workflows with ML metadata". Amazon Web Services. 2019-11-07. Retrieved 2021-06-04.

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