Mercy Corps

February 16, 2010

Global relief organization utilizes NetXposure technology to remotely distribute time-sensitive image and video presentations from a centralized, web-based DAM system to display monitors in the lobby of their new Portland, Oregon headquarters.

Click here to download the Mercy Corps case study

Mercy Corps International utilizes NetXposure’s Public Display CMS technology to remotely distribute image and video presentations from a centralized, web-based Digital Asset Management system to display monitors in the lobby of their new Portland, Oregon headquarters.

As visitors enter the lobby at Mercy Corps International’s brand new global headquarters building in Portland, Oregon -- a LEED-Platinum rated architectural gem in the city’s Old Town District -- they are first greeted by a receptionist, and then by striking images from crisis hot spots around the globe from high definition Samsung monitors mounted to the walls.

While the main television tuned to CNN shows news coverage of recent natural disasters around the globe, additional monitors show Mercy Corps relief efforts taking place in those vary regions. One monitor shows images of rebuilding efforts for recent tsunami victims in the Pacific Islands. Another focuses on relief for victims of an Indonesian earthquake that occurred only the day before.

The proverb, “a picture is worth a thousand words” rings true for Mercy Corps, one of the world’s leading global humanitarian organizations with over 3,700 professionals working amid disasters, conflict and chronic poverty. Complex stories of suffering and oppression, as well as progress and hope are often described with an image or short video, making them powerful means to inspire, educate and raise awareness of the agency’s mission and global relief efforts. These images have been instrumental in telling Mercy Corps’ story, and the stories of those it helps.

Mercy Corps’ creative services team utilizes NetXposure’s Public Display CMS technology in conjunction with NetXposure’s Digital Asset Management (“DAM”) solution to program content shown on the lobby monitors from a remote, web-based administrative console. The content is primarily image slideshows and video presentations that are drawn from the organization’s DAM, a web-based repository of over 50,000 digital images, documents and video organized with an extensive taxonomy system that allows for quick search and retrieval of specific files.

“Using NetXposure’s Public Display CMS to beam images of current relief efforts from the DAM to our lobby monitors is a great example of how were using technology to get the most out of our creative media assets. The ability to make changes or updates to presentations from the web interface, from wherever and whenever we want, gives us the flexibility to get the most out of time-sensitive content when delivering our message.”

Jennifer Dillan, Creative Services Director, Mercy Corps International

Digital Asset Management at Mercy Corps

Phil Ottum, a Photo Library Specialist at Mercy Corps, respectfully acknowledges the Indian Ocean tsunami of 2004 as the moment when it became apparent the organization needed a new approach to managing their digital archive.

“Managing the enormous amount of photographs coming in from the tsunami zone in Sri Lanka -- both from field operatives and a large number of contracted photographers -- became a big issue.”

At that time, Mercy Corps used a legacy image management system that served well as a file repository but lagged in management capabilities or editing and repurposing features.

DAM at Mercy Corps (continued) With search and retrieval topping the priority list, Mercy Corps began the search for a DAM system with robust and flexible metadata management capabilities, including customization and automation. The DAM also had to be cost effective, easy to maintain, and able to scale to meet the expected growth of digital content.

After careful consideration of other DAM offerings, Mercy Corps selected NetXposure, the first enterprise class Digital Asset Management solution builtwithanAdobeFlexuserinterface. Asidefromthevisuallycompelling and easy to use interface, Mercy Corps was drawn to NetXposure’s use of Adobe AIR technology to combine the flexibility of the Web with the responsiveness of the desktop.

In addition, NetXposure’s adherance to open standards technology , flexible Web Services API, and roundtrip-support for XMP metadata enabled Mercy Corps to improve workflow efficiencies and team collaboration, both of which contribute to lower costs and improved productivity for the organization.

Public Display CMS Technology

The purpose of NetXposure’s Public Display CMS technology is to provide a seamless and simplistic content management system to program digital content (e.g. image slideshows, video, live content, dynamic software applications) that will be remotely delivered to publicly viewable clients such as display monitors and interactive kiosks.

Technically, Public Display CMS relies on NetXposure’s Syndication technology, which provides standard XML feeds including RSS and Atom. The Public Display CMS module makes remote URL calls to the DAM, reading the XML configuration files so that it can authenticate against the DAM. Once registered it will communicate with the DAM periodically, looking for syndication updates such as the URL and name of the feed to pull from the DAM, so that it can display the associated content on the client monitor.

The Public Display CMS module is built with Adobe AIR technology, so it's easy to install and runs on all major platforms (Windows, Mac, and even Linux). The only requirements are a client PC or Mac with the following: Adobe AIR, a network connection, and the Display CMS application. The client is a double-click install, and takes seconds to configure and deploy. All content selection is done from the main Digital Asset Management application, making administration a breeze — you can change your content from anywhere!

About NetXposure

NetXposure delivers software solutions that reduce the time and cost of content production, maximize ROI from media assets, and streamline the workflows of managing large libraries of digital files.With a history as an industry pioneer in developing Rich Internet Applications (RIAs), NetXposure has become a leader in delivering Digital Asset Management (DAM) solutions to organizations of all sizes across a wide range of industries.

Founded in 1995, NetXposure is headquartered in Portland, Oregon with an offices in London, England and Tokyo, Japan. For more information visit or call 503.499.4342.

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