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Rkolsen3,307 posts since 20 Jan 2014
BBC World News
Remember supposedly there’s the ability custom graphics for each channel, but I doubt this was the case. However with the way things are setup as I understand and the real time renderings and automation , the director may have only had a brief chance to catch it.

I don’t recall seeing in the multiviewers a separate page for the multiple lower thirds and one for different Viz full form channels. There maybe a preview but it could change as the previous slide goes to air.
Don’t let anyone treat you like you’re a VO/SOT when you’re a PKG.
VMPhil10,398 posts since 31 Mar 2005
Granada North West Today
How exactly does a graphic like this make it to air?
*


Sigh. Broadcasters are facing an unbelievably challenging time and mistakes will be made. We should be thankful we’ve got a service at all.

I don’t think AxG was being rude, I think he was genuinely asking how that would have happened in hope of a response from one of our knowledgeable members (I’d like to know too!)
10
dosxuk4,572 posts since 22 Oct 2005
Yorkshire Look North (Yorkshire)
Remember supposedly there’s the ability custom graphics for each channel, but I doubt this was the case. However with the way things are setup as I understand and the real time renderings and automation , the director may have only had a brief chance to catch it.

I don’t recall seeing in the multiviewers a separate page for the multiple lower thirds and one for different Viz full form channels. There maybe a preview but it could change as the previous slide goes to air.


The "custom graphics" is the ability to have different lower thirds on each output, which is added after the main gallery output. This looks like a full screen graphic, which is part of the gallery output, so would be the same on all channels and visible in the gallery. Although if it's part of an animation which hasn't rendered correctly, the first the gallery may know of it themselves is when it comes up wrong.

Looks to me like a wrong character encoding or an incorrect font has been used by the renderer. If so, it will have looked fine on whoever-designed-it's computer, only appearing wrong when played out for real. Although there are a number of other possibilities.
1
Rkolsen gave kudos
w1a19 posts since 22 Jul 2017
London London
Yes so this is caused by a few unfortunate happenings. Essentially the engine that the graphic has been played out doesn't have the right font installed on it. That wouldn't matter usually (because VizRT loads font in it's own special way) but unfortunately a setting in the graphic is also incorrect. The two issues fall between design and technical competencies, and so these things happen!

And when I say right font, I mean right version of the font. Reith is still being updated with new characters and some fixes too and periodically there's an update.

For VizRT to handle right to left languages and languages that do special things with characters we have to use a setting which looks on the PC's Font folder for the right typeface to get that functionality. That setting is on by default globally, in case an Arabic or Persian programme needs to come from any studio at short notice. But it can be switched off on a scene-by-scene basis.

So here, the graphic is probably looking for a font in it's Font folder that it can't find - because it's got a slightly older version of the font installed. When it can't find the right thing we get that gobbledy-gook. Not helpful!

The fix here, would be to change the setting in the scene or to update the fonts installed on the myriad of machines. Why wasn't that done already? Well...human error and the usual issues you get in all work places.

Also, this scene might be a special case that hasn't been used in a while. Journalists have a habit of picking things they are used to, irrespective of how old it is. This may have been built before the global font setting was applied. Of course, there's a lot of people not doing their usual shifts etc too. On average this doesn't happen a lot, but we get peaks when the font is updated and then these cases which slip through the net.

I think there's also a point to be made about issues with automated systems too though. Maintaining the systems, with the correct fonts and settings is boring, repetitive work that I think lends itself to things getting missed. This isn't industry or BBC specific at all. It most likely happens in your job. And we're not talking about 20 or so templates. There are hundreds, made at different points, serving three 24 hour news channels. And there's plenty of machines to update too.

In my mind, this wouldn't have gone on air if graphics operators we're still a thing, previewing in the gallery. When I was operating, I always made sure I saw graphics before they went out on air, on the machine they were being played out on . Automated systems make this harder to do. The theory is that all machines are equal, but in reality that is difficult to maintain. Dosxuk is right (and this is what makes these issues harder to spot), it may have appeared correctly on the preview engine if the same font issue is happening there too and then only fallen over when it was taken live.
18
Worzel5,006 posts since 8 Jan 2008
Anglia (West) Look East (West sub-opt)
Yes so this is caused by a few unfortunate happenings. Essentially the engine that the graphic has been played out doesn't have the right font installed on it. That wouldn't matter usually (because VizRT loads font in it's own special way) but unfortunately a setting in the graphic is also incorrect. The two issues fall between design and technical competencies, and so these things happen!

And when I say right font, I mean right version of the font. Reith is still being updated with new characters and some fixes too and periodically there's an update.

For VizRT to handle right to left languages and languages that do special things with characters we have to use a setting which looks on the PC's Font folder for the right typeface to get that functionality. That setting is on by default globally, in case an Arabic or Persian programme needs to come from any studio at short notice. But it can be switched off on a scene-by-scene basis.

So here, the graphic is probably looking for a font in it's Font folder that it can't find - because it's got a slightly older version of the font installed. When it can't find the right thing we get that gobbledy-gook. Not helpful!

The fix here, would be to change the setting in the scene or to update the fonts installed on the myriad of machines. Why wasn't that done already? Well...human error and the usual issues you get in all work places.

Also, this scene might be a special case that hasn't been used in a while. Journalists have a habit of picking things they are used to, irrespective of how old it is. This may have been built before the global font setting was applied. Of course, there's a lot of people not doing their usual shifts etc too. On average this doesn't happen a lot, but we get peaks when the font is updated and then these cases which slip through the net.

I think there's also a point to be made about issues with automated systems too though. Maintaining the systems, with the correct fonts and settings is boring, repetitive work that I think lends itself to things getting missed. This isn't industry or BBC specific at all. It most likely happens in your job. And we're not talking about 20 or so templates. There are hundreds, made at different points, serving three 24 hour news channels. And there's plenty of machines to update too.

In my mind, this wouldn't have gone on air if graphics operators we're still a thing, previewing in the gallery. When I was operating, I always made sure I saw graphics before they went out on air, on the machine they were being played out on . Automated systems make this harder to do. The theory is that all machines are equal, but in reality that is difficult to maintain. Dosxuk is right (and this is what makes these issues harder to spot), it may have appeared correctly on the preview engine if the same font issue is happening there too and then only fallen over when it was taken live.


Thanks for the insight. Smile It's great when we get insiders who are happy to explain these sorts of things.
8
AndrewPSSP, SuperSajuuk and 6 others
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JamesTV311 posts since 4 Mar 2015
Westcountry Spotlight
How exactly does a graphic like this make it to air?
*


Sigh. Broadcasters are facing an unbelievably challenging time and mistakes will be made. We should be thankful we’ve got a service at all.

Ah shall we just stop discussing TV presentation altogether then, and all stop being intrigued as to how things work? That's clearly what many people want. Rolling Eyes

Mistakes can happen at any time. Not just during this pandemic. TV Forum is the place where they tend to get discussed which is perfectly reasonable.
9
chris4,386 posts since 6 Jul 2005
Granada North West Today
How exactly does a graphic like this make it to air?
*


Sigh. Broadcasters are facing an unbelievably challenging time and mistakes will be made. We should be thankful we’ve got a service at all.

Ah shall we just stop discussing TV presentation altogether then, and all stop being intrigued as to how things work? That's clearly what many people want. Rolling Eyes

Mistakes can happen at any time. Not just during this pandemic. TV Forum is the place where they tend to get discussed which is perfectly reasonable.


Sorry AxG - I misread the post as having a sarcastic tone.

There is a balance between interesting presentation talk and posters jumping on the smallest, briefest mistakes which are understandably becoming more frequent. It’s become very tiring - probably thanks to many bored posters. I won’t stop defending the industry in tough times but I will try and ignore if it continues.
DavidWhitfield882 posts since 16 Oct 2013
Tyne Tees Look North (North East)

Sigh. Broadcasters are facing an unbelievably challenging time and mistakes will be made. We should be thankful we’ve got a service at all.

Ah shall we just stop discussing TV presentation altogether then, and all stop being intrigued as to how things work? That's clearly what many people want. Rolling Eyes

Mistakes can happen at any time. Not just during this pandemic. TV Forum is the place where they tend to get discussed which is perfectly reasonable.

I won’t stop defending the industry in tough times but I will try and ignore if it continues.


I don't think any of us would be here if we didn't have full respect for 'the industry'. When questions are asked about how things happen and when things are posted about problems or things appearing differently to normal or displaying incorrectly, it's because we're fascinated by what goes on 'behind the scenes' and want to know more. You don't need to defend anything as nothing is under attack.
Guess who's big in the back time!
4
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