MUMBAI: Amidst Prime Minister Narendra Modi's call for a 'Digital India', there is an increasing demand for digitisation of archives of Doordarshan and All India Radio, to make it available on digital and online platforms.
"Private sports body Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has successfully adopted a digital strategy to future proof its invaluable archives and also to monetise it across multiple platforms. It is scoring additional revenues on starsports.com and other digital platforms," says Ramki Sankaranarayanan, Founder and CEO of Prime Focus Technologies.
The company has leveraged in-depth knowledge of the sports genre and strong IT skills to join Deltatre in developing a powerful and interactive OTT platform for Star Sports – StarSports.com (SS.com)
According to Sankaranarayanan, getting DD and AIR archives on every smartphone or mobile devices can become a money spinner in India, which has 90 crore mobile phone handset owners.
DD-Archives has nearly 150,000 hours of analogue content on BCN/U-matic tapes and about 200,000 hours on Beta tapes. About 100-200 hours of fresh programme, which can be termed as digitally born, is added to its libraries daily.
AIR has about 12,000-15,000 hours of programme in analogue form on tapes/LP-discs and nearly 20,000 hours of programme stored on CDs in its Central Archives at Delhi. In addition, about 75,000 hours of programme in analogue form is available at major AIR stations.
"Digitisation of archives, some of which are rare, can be a money spinner for Prasar Bharati as it is much bigger than BCCI," says media professional and TV producer Shruti Agrawal.
"Prasar Bharati has to become self-sufficient in revenues in order to become autonomous. If it can get revenues from digital archives satisfying demand from across the world, then it will no longer need monetary support from Information and Broadcasting Ministry. Archives of regional DD channels is another big opportunity," Agarwal said.
Prasar Bharati plans to outsource the process of digitising the archives of Doordarshan and All India Radio and has issued expression of interest seeking applications from private entities, but progress is slow, say media experts.
Union Minister of State for Information and Broadcasting Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore had recently said that so far, AIR has accomplished digitisation of 1,40,000 hours of recording, while DD has digitised 20,139 hours of recordings.
In the 12th Five Year Plan, AIR was allocated Rs 2.30 crore and DD Rs 16.32 crore for the purpose.