News Stories

Digital Distribution Standard IMF lands at SMPTE

While media convergence and related “smart” CE devices/services take center stage at CES, Hollywood is taking important steps toward addressing the digital production and distribution of media content.

The Hollywood tech community – under leadership of the major studios and the ETC@USC – published its Interoperable Master Format (IMF) in 2010, a proposed voluntary specification designed to serve as a standard digital distribution master. Recently, the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers (SMPTE) announced the creation of an IMF working group to move forward with standardizing the format.

CES continues to showcase an increasingly expanded array of connected, over-the-top, CE devices and platforms. Now more than ever, content creators are faced with the challenge of making media available via television, the Internet, mobile devices, gaming platforms, and more (not to mention HD, 3D, and Digital Cinema). Eliminating the reliance upon multiple forms of physical media to meet these needs, while successfully managing the growing number of file formats, will help streamline this process for Hollywood and, in the long run, help foster an improved experience for consumers.

Read more on this from Carolyn Giardina’s article in The Hollywood Reporter.

ETC has a page explaining the goals and background of the IMF project.


Our Youtube channel can be found here
Watch the vNAB videos below



  • To advance technology and innovation within the entertainment industry
  • To provide a neutral setting for the entertainment industry, technology and electronics companies and to identify and discuss pressing issues
  • To understand the impact of technology on the consumer experience and the creative process
  • To connect and leverage the University of Southern California’s extensive research facilities, faculty and student body with companies
  • To provide insight about emerging consumer habits
  • To convene industry peer groups and partners to share knowledge and experience
  • To create an environment for testing and evaluation of proposed technology solutions
  • To help identify new business models for the entertainment industry
  • To improve the consumer experience and advance the art of entertainment as the 21st century unfolds

ETC Events

ETC Executive Board Meeting – Board Members Only
June 7, 2018

ETC All Members Meeting – By Invitation Only
USC School of Cinematic Arts (SCA 465)
June 20, 2018

ETC Events