What is COVE?

The term "COVE" has been heard pretty widely throughout the system lately. It's a term used quite readily to describe the new "player" being developed by PBS to feature local and national content. While this is accurate, the term COVE refers to so much more than just any one video player experience.

Over the next few weeks, you will have the chance to learn all about COVE in a multi-part series that looks at everything from back-end tools to station integration to future possibilities. But first, let's answer the most important question about COVE ... What is COVE?

COVE has been talked about frequently from Showcase to DevCon and everywhere in-between, but for anyone new to the term, COVE stands for Comprehensive Online Video Ecosystem. While I am a huge fan of all the letters of the alphabet, the most important part of this acronym is the letter E, the Ecosystem. This is the part that makes COVE so unique and mighty. The idea behind COVE is to create a holistic approach to offering video throughout the PBS network by providing the infrastructure necessary for local stations and national producers to serve and share content in a similar vein as they already do on-air. Through COVE, viewers will be able to watch full-length programs--from any participating station or producer--online and at their own schedule.

The backbone of COVE is an asset publishing and management system known as thePlatform. This system allows stations and producers to add media content and syndicate it throughout the COVE network. This means stations can not only present local and national content through the video player on their website, but they can also serve local content from other stations. While syndicating content throughout the COVE network is completely voluntary, there is the potential for a comprehensive network of content ... not local or national ... just simply, content. 

This is were the Local/National COVE Pilot comes in.  The 14 pilot stations will be the first guinea pigs to experiment with using COVE to mix local and national content.

This infrastructure will serve many different applications over time beyond the PBS Video Player (for example,the PBS KIDS GO! video player which has been launched since September 2008). We'll delve more into these experiences in a future post. For now, hopefully this gives you a better idea of what COVE. Talk to you soon!


[Posted on behalf of Max Duke. We'll be back next Wednesday with some tips for implementing the new DTV Schedule Modules]


  1. Posted January 22, 2009 at 11:48 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Hopefully a lot of people out in the system have had a chance to see COVE demoed at various meetings, etc. I think those who have would agree that this has great potential for use on station sites as a way to create sticky content that will create return visits.

    KETC/St. Louis

  2. Posted January 22, 2009 at 9:17 PM | Permalink | Reply

    After doing a number of these demos, one of the features that is most consistently remarked on is the ability to program the interface with content much like an on-air programming block.

    PBSi/Station Products & Services

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