By Ariel Visconti
Canadians will be treated to a heightened red carpet experience this weekend, thanks to an Ontario Centres of Excellence (OCE) supported start-up that will play a major role in bringing Hollywood’s biggest night of the year to audiences north of the border.
Toronto-based Videogami will be working with Bell Media to take CTV’s etalk Oscar coverage to the next level on social media using its innovative Media Center platform.
Videogami's platform enables producers to capture and share key moments from the star-studded red carpet and extensive complementary digital coverage. New this year, aside from featuring exclusive interviews CTV will feature the footage from the “fashion cam," which captures candid moments only available in Canada on CTV.ca and CTV GO.
The high-quality video clips will be shared through etalk's Twitter account and reach an audience of millions of viewers who are following the goings on. Videogami's Media Center will also allow producers to compile a highlight reel of trending clips from Oscar night, letting those who missed it see the most memorable moments.
CTV's etalk will be the only Canadian entertainment news outlet broadcasting live from the red carpet, and with an audience of 6.4 million viewers nationwide tuning in last year, the Oscars is a huge opportunity for Videogami to demonstrate the power of its platform.
“This is a fantastic development for Videogami that will give the company major exposure for its inventive technology,” says OCE President Tom Corr. “We’re very pleased that OCE has been able to provide support for helping this start-up realize its vision for enhancing live event coverage through social media.”
Videogami, which is currently receiving $30,000 in funding plus $5,000 for training services through OCE’s SmartStart Seed Fund, has developed a platform that aims to make videos and live streams even more social. Social media channels have opened up a whole new way for people to engage with events such as sports games and concerts as they happen. As viewers migrate to mobile platforms, they are demanding the media they love follows them. Beyond just commenting using hashtags, these viewers want access to great video, but most of the time all they can find are “low-res” captures off their TV screens. On the other side, event hosts and sponsors can miss the opportunity to engage in these conversations with their own clips, and often will only make video content available online after the event and conversation are over.
Videogami's platform offers benefits for both sides. For producers trying to take advantage of online conversations surrounding their live events, the Videogami Media Center enables them to push the best moments of their own branded video content in real time, which can then be amplified by fans to reach new audiences. The platform also has the capability to let the audience easily make short video clips, share on social media channels, cheer and comment on clips, and create highlight reels.
Videogami is an alumni of the Toronto-based accelerator, INcubes Inc., which “opened doors to a broader spectrum of opportunities, both local and beyond our geographical limits," says Juan Gonzalez, Videogami's CEO.
After the Oscars wrap up this Sunday night, Videogami is excited to keep the momentum going.
“This year is all about exploring how big the deals can be,” says Gonzalez. “Almost every producer we’ve talked to acknowledges the need to connect their best content with their increasingly mobile audiences at just the right time. We have the technology to do this and are now pursuing opportunities across sporting events, concerts, live television and conferences.”