News in Digital Age: ENG Production Facilities’ Role

news in digital age eng production facilities role

In today’s fast paced world of internet and AI, getting news on the go is not just a requirement, it has become a necessity for everyone. Everyone wants to have a scoop of what’s happening around the world in real-time with every detail. The way this news is consumed has also changed over the years with changing consumer preferences from print media to mobile journalism in today’s time. Also, social media has played a significant role in the gathering, production and dissemination of news. But what lies at the heart of this news gathering, production and dissemination is the role of electronic news gathering (ENG) production facilities that support journalists and news broadcasters on the back end of creating a compelling story. Let’s explore how they contribute to the real-time reporting of these events as they unfold.  

Capturing Live Footage  

Did you know? According to research by Verified Market Research the professional video equipment market is projected to reach $43.07 billion by 2030, demonstrating the growing demand for professional video equipment in news gathering and production. At the heart of capturing live news footage lie two types of cameras: Electronic News Gathering (ENG) cameras and Portable Studio Cameras (PSC) cameras, each offering distinct benefits and suited to specific situations. The former has been engineered for agility and flexibility. Their rugged design enables them to endure harsh environmental conditions, ensuring high-quality footage even under challenging circumstances.  

While PSCs are less robust than ENG cameras, they offer better low-light performance. Designed primarily for studio settings, PSCs require additional accessories including lights, tripods, and cables and can be used for interviews, press conferences, and other stationary scenes. Through this video production equipment, journalists can capture real-time footage in different environments and provide audiences with the content required.  

Transmitting Real-Time   

Once footage is captured, the role of ENG production does not end. ENG crews rely on cutting-edge technologies to transmit news in real time. For this, they rely on seamless and reliable transmission methods that involve microwave wireless links or cellular networks that help them broadcast news in real-time. These microwave wireless links and other networks enable journalists and news teams to overcome traditional terrestrial transmission limitations, such as distance, obstructions, and signal interference. This allows for seamless and reliable transmission of breaking news events, ensuring viewers receive up-to-date information.   

Furthermore, many ENG production facilities rely on hybrid transmission solutions that combine multiple technologies for optimal reliability and flexibility. For example, a reporter covering a live event may initially rely on cellular networks for transmission but switch to a satellite uplink as they move to a remote location with limited connectivity. This allows them to continuously transmit video footage without transmission failures.

Editing-on-the-go   

This is like having a ‘fast lane’ on the highway that bypasses congestion, allowing for a smoother ride and efficient goods transfer. Mobile broadcast vehicles often include editing suites where journalists and news crew can edit footage and prepare it for broadcast. This saves a lot of time and delivers the news quickly and more accurately. These editing suites have industry-standard editing software which enables journalists to quickly assemble footage and modify it on the go. Instead of waiting until they return to the studio to begin processing, they can start modifying as soon as they capture the footage. Moreover, this allows for a polished and seamless presentation of news footage, enhancing viewers’ viewing experience.  

Apart from editing software, the production crew also needs to be prepared for downtime and data loss. Hence, these production units also include disaster recovery systems which ensure that news teams can continue operations even in unforeseen circumstances. With backup systems and redundant infrastructure, ENG production facilities ensure to minimize disruptions and their coverage remains uninterrupted.  

Collaboration and Communication:  

When covering news events as they unfold, collaboration and communication act as the two major pillars throughout the process. According to a survey by Deloitte, 90% of journalists believe that real-time collaboration tools are essential for improving newsroom efficiency and productivity. In this entire process, the ENG crew uses collaboration tools to deploy resources via messaging platforms, they provide real-time feedback and respond quickly to events as they unfold. They rely on tools such as messaging platforms, video conferencing, cloud storage solutions, collaborative editing software and much more to streamline their workflows. They access shared resources and review each other’s work regardless of location.  

You can think of the newsroom transforming into a war zone when they must broadcast real-time events, where the journalists are the soldiers that stay on the ground and mobilize to gather information and disseminate it. ENG production facilities act as command centres where journalists constantly report live footage and producers, editors and other team members package and broadcast it.  

Future Landscape:  

The silos between the newsroom and the events taking place are breaking down as we see an increasing shift in journalism from ENG production to mobile journalism. According to research from Ipsos and UNESCO, Global Survey on the Impact of Disinformation and Hate Speech, on average 56% of users from 16 countries rely on social media to get the latest news updates. This highlights how social media impacts the news landscape on a massive scale. This has enabled the birth of mobile journalism which has revolutionized the entire process.  

Furthermore, as we witness drones entering the spectrum, digital broadcasting of news has been pushed to an unprecedented level which was impossible earlier. Through this equipment, the production crew can provide aerial shots which are a safer way of reporting in dangerous environments. Further, Augmented Reality (AR) offers audiences a more immersive experience, creating a deeper connection with the content.

Professional video equipment and ENG production facilities have empowered journalists and revolutionized the way live-news is broadcasted and consumed by the digital audience. With further advancements in technology, we can see better camera quality such as 8K video quality being broadcasted live. This would also involve better video transmission technology and post-production processes. Additionally, advancements in artificial intelligence (AI) may enable automated video editing and real-time fact-checking, further enhancing the quality and accuracy of live news. The possibilities are endless, and the future of live-news broadcasting is certainly full of exciting potential.

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