SnapStream Blog

TV Monitoring Technology for Government #GTEC 2011

October 18 2011 by Rachel Abbott

Lots of folks have conspiracy theories about the government, that the government is Big Brother; the government is always watching. Well, I'm here to tell you that government surveillance is a real thing, in one aspect that I know for sure, and that is television monitoring. I can say this with the utmost certainty because SnapStream is in use at hundreds of government organizations throughout the United States, Canada and beyond.

Today, our team is on the ground at GTEC, Canada's largest government technology exposition. It's our second year showcasing TV Search at this event thanks to our partner, CBCI Telecom, for prompting us to make it a yearly ritual. At the brand new Ottawa Convention Centre, the government's IT community will congregate to see the hottest spread of tech offerings, looking for ways to improve operational efficiency while justifying the budget spend, no doubt.

In these aspects, SnapStream is attractive for many public affairs and public information departments who have a vested interest in monitoring televised media on their own terms. Politicians and political parties, too, are a great fit for SnapStream. With SnapStream, you are the keeper of your TV recordings—you have the power to search, clip, archive and transcode your content.

After attending GV Expo last year, I learned that having in-house control over this process is key for government authorities, who need to respond to media requests, dispatch information and maintain an archival of all their press appearances, mentions and activities.

If you're at GTEC Oct. 18 and 19, come visit SnapStream at booth 123 for a demonstration. The first time you see a TV search in action, you'll be amazed at how familiar it feels, just like searching the Web. It's that snappy and easy.

SnapStream makes its official European debut with DVB-T and PAL! #IBC11

September 09 2011 by Rachel Abbott

Meet us at IBC! Hall 6, Stand 6.A06

Today is the day! At the 2011 International Broadcasting Convention, Europe's largest professional broadcast show, SnapStream will premiere its best-of-breed TV recording and search capabilities on the world's stage, Hall 6, Stand 6.A06. This is a highly anticipated moment by many, and I mean MANY. Every day, we receive messages from organizations all over the world, looking to enlist SnapStream to solve their TV monitoring problems (which include costly clipping services and traditional, subscription-based media monitoring services).

The international distinction, or technical hurdle, has long been the varying digital broadcast standards native to each country. For example: In the U.S. and Canada, it's ATSC. In Europe, it's DVB-T and PAL. We soon discovered it wasn't going to be a simple migration to transfer the complexity of SnapStream's architecture over to these foreign standards.

Digital broadcast standards

Luckily, our engineers are incredibly smart people! So it's in due course that our team is now on the ground in Amsterdam, showcasing the first prototype of our European TV monitoring technology. The new SnapStream adds support for PAL and early support for DVB-T. Subtitles and teletext searching will be incorporated into a subsequent release.

If you're at the Amsterdam RAI, Septemeber 9 - 13, you'll see up close how SnapStream enables organizations to record, log and search traditional TV (terrestrial, cable or satellite), all over the LAN.

Today, our powerful TV monitoring platform is used by hundreds of broadcasters, production studios, educators and governments across North America. Now, European organizations will soon be able to leverage SnapStream's robust capabilities:

- Record large amounts of TV, from 4 channels to 50 channels or... more!
- Archive an unlimited amount of TV shows with expandable storage
- Access TV over the LAN from any LAN connected PC with a web browser
- Perform real-time keyword searches of subtitles (where available)
- Easily create, download and e-mail TV clips
- Receive TV e-mail alerts of specific mentions
- Watch TV from any PC on the network
- Transcode TV files seamlessly and quickly to WMV and H.264 formats

If you're not going to be at the show, contact us to set up a Web demo and to glean additional information.

Tis the Season for Government Video Expo

November 30 2010 by MLopez

Every year after the Thanksgiving turkey has been gobbled, I know one thing is for sure. Team SnapStream is bound for the nation's capital to partake in the expansive Government Video Expo. This year, the event runs December 1 - 2 and will mark our fourth trip to what is known as the largest video production and training event to grace the east coast.

I love traveling to Washington, DC since it's the thriving epicenter of our government customer base, which includes the U.S. Senate, the Library of Congress and lots of federal organizations under lock and key. Yet it's important to note that the applications for TV search are boundless between city, state and federal government, and we have customers across the map with systems ranging in power to meet all levels. The gathering at GV Expo is largely federal, so we will be demonstrating our more powerful systems that can record and archive greater amounts of television over time.

I personally invite all of you "TV Searchers" to our booth (427) to be among the first to test our next generation of TV search technology, which will be fully released in the first half of 2011. I look forward to seeing many of your familiar faces at GV Expo, and happy holidays to all!

Fresh from #SMPTE2010: Exclusive Webinar Nov. 3

October 31 2010 by Rachel Abbott

If you missed the SMPTE conference this year, have no fear. We're recreating our presentation content just for you! Straight from SnapStream's file-based workflows session: "Inside the Jokes: TV Search Technology Yields Creative, Comedic Screenwriting."

This Wednesday, Nov. 3, you'll catch a glimpse of the HD workflows and long-term storage setup we pioneered at The Daily Show with Jon Stewart and The Colbert Report, along with a behind-the-scenes look at how The Soup searches and clips TV.

HD Workflows & Long-Term Storage

Wednesday, November 3

3:30 - 4:30 p.m. EDT.

Live Q & A to follow

Sign up now at GoToMeeting (it's free)

SnapStream rocked the PIO Section at #IACP2010

October 22 2010 by Rachel Abbott

Mickey Mouse knows what's up: Police Chiefs have invaded Orlando, FL, gathering from all around the globe at the International Association of Chief of Police Annual Conference Oct. 23-27. It's their 117th annual gathering. (Since 1893, folks!)

From patrolling on horseback at the turn of the century to searching TV in the new millennium, IACP has come a long way as the world's largest oldest and largest association of law enforcement executives.

On Saturday, Oct. 23, SnapStream's CEO Rakesh Agrawal and Senior Sales Engineer Tom Wilson led a session in the Public Information Officers section track. Our friends at the Plano Police Department (TX) and Lee County Sheriff's Office (FL), Officer Rick McDonald and Lieutenant Larry King respectively, participated in the panel discussion as well.

Both PIOs are SnapStream users who rely on TV search technology in their day-to-day media communications. The topic of discussion, "Instant Television Communication to your iPhone and other Applications During a Crisis," included case studies from Plano PD and Lee County detailing their uses of search, clipping and TV Alerts in action. If you'd like a copy of the presentation, send an e-mail to

Here's one example from Lee County Sheriff's Office (LCSO). When the State Attorney's Office dropped murder charges on two suspects arrested by LCSO, local media all used the word "botched" in reference to the investigation. At no point did the District Attorney (or anyone) use this term. See for yourself how this was a flagrant case of the media "piling on." PIO Lt. King brought this reel into a meeting between public safety and the media: prepared, supporting evidence using SnapStream.

This year, IACP attracted nearly 14,000 attendees with members diversified from over 100 countries. The workshops provide excellent training opportunities in law enforcement leadership, tackling new, yet important issues like social media policy and outreach and media response with TV search technology. For conference updates, visit the IACP 2010 Blog or follow @IACPOfficial on Twitter.

3 C M A - City-County Communications and Marketing Association

September 17 2010 by Mark Brooks

In Atlanta last week (Sept. 8-10), I represented SnapStream at the City-County Communications and Marketing Association (3CMA) annual conference. The event combined technology, creativity, information and networking in a fun-filled atmosphere.

They had dozens of workshops focusing on every aspect of communications. I was lucky enough to participate as a panelist for "Stay on Top of Your Game: Communications Survival Skills." With experienced 3CMA'ers Michelle Bono (Asst. to City Manager, Tallahassee) and Joe Munoz (PIO Manager, Maricopa County), we discussed techniques for flourishing consistently in local government communications and marketing.

It was exciting to bring television monitoring to the conversation and gauge the importance, especially at the city government level. Nearly 200 3CMA’ers made the trip to the conference and are now headed back to their work sites armed with powerful new tools to increase their communication arsenals. I'm looking forward to next year's event in Austin--3CMA Texas Style!

Our meetup with the Houston-Galveston PIO Network

August 03 2010 by Rachel Abbott

Last Thursday, I tagged along with Rakesh Agrawal (CEO of SnapStream) to introduce TV search to the regional PIO Network meeting held at the Texas Department of Transportation. I'll tell you, public information is A LOT to keep up with, especially with all the mutations of social media multiplying every second.

There were all sorts of PIOs represented, from city offices to the Coast Guard. It was cool to see all of these diverse officials gathered with their common, collective concern for public knowledge, safety and health.

The meeting kicked off with Chuck Wolf, an integral media consultant in the Gulf of Mexico oil spill response, which is now transitioning to the gulf restoration response. (Woohoo the well is capped!) At the Joint Information Center headquartered in New Orleans, Chuck and his team dispense a mind-boggling amount of documents--fact sheets, press releases, media advisories--on a 24-7 basis.

“A Joint Information Center is a co-located group of representatives from local, state, federal and private organizations designated to handle public information needs during an incident or event.”

BP has put together quite the team to handle the world's largest oil spill response. You can see who's involved at this page of

Having a tough act to follow, we were the closers in the presenting line-up. (In baseball, that's a very important job!) Rakesh led the presentation about SnapStream, joined by the insights of Rosie Torres, Assistant PIO, Harris County Office of Emergency Management and Dinah Massie, PIO, Houston TranStar.

At the Harris County OEM, the PIOs recently monitored flash flood warnings during Hurricane Alex. Meanwhile, the Houston TranStar office continually tracks local television news to verify and enforce correct attribution for traffic footage. Those magic words, "courtesy of Houston TranStar" must appear. (Or else, major traffic jams will incur!)

Lastly, we learned the telling results of a media monitoring survey conducted among the Houston-Galveston group. Two major stats to highlight:

86% of PIOs monitor local TV stations on a day-to-day, non-emergency basis.

98% of PIOs monitor local television stations when an emergency or disaster arises.

That's what makes SnapStream incredibly relevant for this group. Since many of these municipal agencies share LAN connections, they can pool together and utilize one centralized SnapStream Server to access TV Search and disperse actionable news quickly to their departments. Wouldn't that be something?

On the Road with Public Information Officers

May 04 2010 by Rachel Abbott

Spring is in the air, and it's the perfect time for road trips. This month, we're leaving Houston in the rear view, touring to Kansas, Georgia and Ontario to convene with three different government crowds. The schedule of events is leaning towards public safety, information and communication.

Along our way, we'll pick up our friends from the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, Johnson County Sheriff's Office, Overland Park Fire Department and Plano Police Department.

Once we're cruising, we'll get to talking about television monitoring, workflows and best practices, all from the PIO's point of view. (PIO = public information officer)

First stop, Kansas

KAPIO | Lawrence, KS | Thurs. May 13, 12 pm

SnapStream, I've a feeling we're not in Houston anymore. We're hightailing it to Kansas for the first, ever, statewide gathering of PIOs, not to mention officers from surrounding states like Missouri. We are thrilled to be a part of the Kansas Association of Public Information Officers' inaugural conference, where we're hosting the headlining educational seminar.

Panelists: Tom Erickson, president of KAPIO and PIO for Johnson County Sheriff's Office, and Jason Rhodes, PIO of Overland Park Fire Department

Next up, P-I-O' Canada!

IACP PIO | Toronto, ON | Fri. May 21, 8:30 am

The week after KAPIO, we're trekking to Toronto for a friendly meet-up with our neighbors to the North. American and Canadian public information officers will come together at this joint event between the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) and the Ontario Association of Chiefs of Police (OACP) for an open exchange of information and training across borders.

Panelists: From the Royal Canadian Mounted Police - Steven Lusignan, Media Monitoring and Analysis Unit of Public Affairs and Communications Services, and David Patterson, Operational Readiness and Response Coordination Center

A Peachy Finish

IACP LEIM | Atlanta, GA | Thurs. May 27, 10:15 am

Last in the lineup, we head to the Peach State for the 34th annual IACP Law Enforcement Information Management (LEIM) training conference, where we'll learn about the technology that battles crime and helps departments run at tip-top speed.

Panelists: From the Plano Police Department - Rick McDonald, Public Information Officer, and Heather Bowden, PIO Coordinator

Oh, the places we go! That wraps up the trips for May. Thanks to everyone who's coming along for the ride.

NAB Afterglow

April 28 2010 by Mark Brooks

The team jetted back from Vegas at the end of week before last, in a total whirlwind. We had a real successful showing at the
National Association of Broadcasters conference. At our booth, we had the 50-channel DVR on display and ramped up for active demos and got to meet tons of interesting people in the entertainment industry.

We were in South Upper Hall, a lively, active spot. Passerby came over to enter our DVR contest, which is still going on until the end of this week (April 30), if you haven't entered. But man, did we get some funny names and reactions at the booth!

The Broadcast Education Association had a co-located conference that Thursday (April 15) where our CEO Rakesh Agrawal participated in a panel along with other news assignment editors and journalism professors. The panel explored adapting news video for the Web.

For those of you who couldn't make it and requested the rebroadcast, we've clipped out Rakesh's portion for you to watch. (It's on our YouTube channel.)

All in all, definitely a great show. This was SnapStream's fourth time, my third, and I know we'll be back to kick it again next year.

Visit SnapStream at NAB Next Week

April 17 2009 by Lynne Burke




SnapStream will be at NAB this year again, to demonstrate our new products and features. Come by and see us at our booth, South Upper Hall #SU6105 (Map)


The new products and features we’ll be demonstrating:

  • QAM/ATSC Support: Record, search and clip QAM and ATSC broadcasts.
  • Email Clip: Create a clip and email it using the Viewscape or Admin interface.
  • Real-Time Search: Search for mentions of interest as they are being recorded.
  • SnapStream Mini TV Search Appliance: For smaller organizations that stand to gain from searching television, but don't need the full functionality of the SnapStream Server.




April 17–23, 2009 • Las Vegas, NV
The NAB Show has evolved over the last eight decades to continually lead this ever-changing industry. And while the solutions at your fingertips have changed to keep pace with consumer lifestyles, habits and technologies, your aspirations to produce and deliver memorable content have remained consistent. From conception through distribution, the NAB Show has proudly served as the incubator for excellence – helping to breathe life into content everywhere.


What is SnapStream? There's an unlimited amount of video content out there: 24/7 news channels, breaking news events, sports, talk shows, awards galas, entertainment shows, and so much more.

SnapStream makes a real-time news and media search engine that makes it fast and easy to find the video moments that support our customers telling great stories.

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