Passion for DAM, Growth Potential in Metadata and the New Chemistry of Data
An Interview with NueMeta founder Nick Sincaglia
By Charlotta Hedman | April 12, 2012
NueMeta is a technical development and service provider that helps media & entertainment companies design and develop digital asset management and royalty reporting systems which embrace global metadata and messaging standards.
Q: How and why did you set up NueMeta?
A: I started NueMeta in early 2007 after working in the digital media & entertainment industry for almost a decade. The company grew out of my experiences working in the early days of the online music business where I designed and managed large-scale digital asset management systems for companies like Rhapsody and AOL. Managing digital collections of images, sound recordings and videos numbering in the millions, requires a unique set of skills and knowledge, which I realized few others had. We further recognized that most companies would eventually need to address the challenges associated with a growing number of digital assets they use on a day-to-day basis in their business. We see the field of digital asset and metadata management as still being in its infancy with enormous potential for growth.
Q: Why is it important for media and entertainment companies to embrace global metadata standards?
A: Media and entertainment companies must embrace metadata standards for one simple reason, because the economics of a vibrant and diverse digital marketplace simply cannot support itself otherwise. In order to provide consumers the media and the entertainment experiences they want, and at the same time, respect rights of the owners and ensure they are properly compensated, we need fast, efficient and unambiguous business communications with many different business partners. Metadata standards are the key to achieving this. The digital marketplace is a high volume, low margin business, in terms of transactions. The industry needs to minimize or eliminate as many costs from their business communications as they can, to come close to achieving the balance they seek between the consumer and the creator.
Q: Would you say the entertainment and music industries understand the importance of using metadata?
A: The truth is, the majority of the industry does not fully appreciate the importance and value of metadata. However, in the last few years, I have seen this start to change. We have been working with a number of companies that do "get it". They recognize that their lifeblood is their digital assets and their competitive edge can derive from the metadata they use to manage them.
Q: What has been the most challenging with setting up NueMeta?
A: Running any type of business is extremely challenging. Running a business in an industry, which has been going through the type of seismic shifts that have occurred in the media and entertainment industry, is especially challenging. However, we do what we do because of our passion for this industry. I want to continue to be a part of changing the industry for the better. Helping consumers get the media experiences they want and helping those who helped create, distribute and delivered the media, to be fairly compensated.
Q: What has been the most rewarding?
A: The most rewarding aspect of NueMeta for me has been getting to know all the amazing and talented people I have worked with or done business with over the years. Our clients span the globe, so we have our team strategically placed across all major media hubs in the US and Europe. This has forced us to become accustomed to working in distributed teams. I value the unique perspectives they bring, the insights they have on the business and the industry as a whole and everything they have taught me along the way.
Q: Where do you want to go next?
A: I have a long-term vision for NueMeta, which we are executing now, and will continue to execute for some time. The field of digital asset and metadata management is still in its early stages. I see enormous growth potential in this field. I am particularly excited about bringing the native XML architectures we use at the core of our software platform to a much broader market. Our approach to metadata management has significant benefits to businesses that deal with large volumes of XML data. This software architecture enables rapid development and greater maintainability, which enables us to keep our costs down. When these systems are combined with cloud computing, we are able to put powerful data management tools in the hands of small and mid-sized companies. In addition, we have just recently have partnered with MarkLogic and we plan to expand that relationship to bring high performance and "big data" solutions to our larger clients.
Q: Do you think data is the new oil? If so why/why not?
A: To be honest, the comparison between data and oil is flawed in my opinion. I think the comparison is trying to suggest that data is this new untapped resource that will drive the economy and make those who control it, incredibly wealthy and powerful.
Let me suggest a different comparison. Data is the new chemistry. Data is all around us. We can collect it, characterize it and mix it with other data. Under certain circumstances, this work will result in new and unexpected breakthroughs. The field of big data is still very young and we have much to learn. But we all recognize it has enormous potential.
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