This year’s Primetime Emmy Awards winners, honored in a two-hour ceremony last Sunday, included an on-demand program that is leveraging technology relevant to the cable industry’s advanced advertising initiative.

As it happens, a meeting this week of the SCTE digital video subcommittee (DVS) provides additional evidence that technology which will ultimately drive the industry’s so-called Canoe initiative is moving forward. Election cycle It’s easy to lose track of what and whom the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences is honoring in any given year. There are only some 80 separate categories.

But in this year’s winner in the "Special Class, Short-Format Nonfiction Program" category (not to be confused with five other "Special Class" awards) was "Great Moments from the Campaign Trail," a program in the History Channel’s Electron ’08 video-on-demand (VOD) channel.

According to our CableFAX colleagues, the non-partisan Election ’08 is the first product emanating from Canoe Ventures, the joint MSO advertising effort. Although Election ’08 precedes Canoe, the joint venture adopted the program, which has attracted advertising and entailed standardization of the on-demand platform across several MSOs.

"It was a big technological milestone and a big on-demand accomplishment," Comcast Spotlight SVP marketing and communications Vicki Lins, told CableFAX. Addressable ad standard Although there is room for skepticism on the Canoe project, there is a strong corresponding momentum among vendors and operators toward figuring out acceptable ways to deliver greater value to both advertisers and consumers. (See this discussion of "The Personalized Future" by Motorola’s Ray Bontempi.)

At least on the technology side, the standards are lining up, slowly but surely.

According to Paul Woidke, chairman of the digital program insertion (DPI) working group of SCTE’s digital video subcommittee (DVS) and SVP and GM of advanced Advertising for OpenTV, this week’s DVS meeting included several related updates.

Specifically, Woidke said the drafting group responsible for SCTE 130 has resolved some comments that are leading to amendments to parts 2, 3, and 4 of this standard. (For more on SCTE 130, see this brief overview) There was also movement in the standard’s subsequent four parts.

"Part 7 has been finished and is going to move to ballot," Woidke said. This part of the standard governs the physical transport and logical protocols required to exchange advanced advertising messages a system’s multiple components.

Finally, Woidke said that the proposed DVS 766 standard, "Stream Conditioning for Switching of Addressable Content in Digital Television Receivers," is also moving ahead through the standards-creating process.

"The significance of (DVS 766) is that it is what I would call a foundational or underlying standard that supports the delivery of addressable advertising," said Woidke.

– Jonathan Tombes

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