What is Video Contribution?

The video contribution step occurs after an event is produced and that program is sent (contributed) across the world to different rights-holding broadcasters. They add some local production such as logos, local interviews, commentary, and studio arrangements to create a complete program. Once this is done there is no further manipulation and the content heads straight to distribution (primary and consumer).

Video contribution is a vital transport link in nearly every live event workflow, such as sports contribution. It is sometimes referred to as Occasional Use Contribution (OU). OU contribution refers to event connections that are occasional for a match or an event/tournament.

Video has typically been routed (backhauled) to a central gallery from outside broadcast units at the venue over satellite links or via permanently installed cable networks.

This traditional circuit-based video contribution infrastructure has high fixed costs. Booking space on a satellite transponder is expensive. As OU contribution is normally arranged for less than 300 rights holders it is not efficient to use satellite, which incurs the same cost regardless of the number of receivers. Telcos, meanwhile, would charge a premium for using their fixed links – links that lay redundant outside of occasional events.

Video Contribution vs Video Distribution

Video contribution and video distribution are similar only in name, where both may be part of the same process of providing content for the viewers.

Video contribution describes the process of using satellite links or services to transport content from a studio to a TV uplink center, or from content providers, content rights holders, or another remote source to a broadcaster’s studio.

Video distribution describes the process that takes place after the video contribution. It simply refers to the process of distributing the content to audiences on different devices. A video distribution platform is often used to achieve this, such as a MAM (Media Asset Management).

The challenges of sports contribution

Sports broadcasting is a very vibrant and growing sector and a highly relevant industry for live contribution. As sports rights rise in price, the broadcasters are desperate to find new ways to monetize the content across an increasing amount of channels. The big challenge is how to manage the growth in content generated from events, as well as maintain the quality of the content. Sports contribution concerns the acquisition and delivery of live signals from events for the relevant stakeholders.

A core challenge of sports contribution the rights holders are facing is how to maximize the monetization of their rights. For example, in the case of major events, there’s been a dramatic increase in the number of feeds that broadcasters want to transmit from a venue, across various resolutions and codecs.

Sports contribution is becoming more complex as the need for more content to be able to satisfy the expanded range of platforms and devices is ever-increasing. Traditional, legacy sports contribution technologies can no longer keep up and are, as mentioned, fairly expensive.

Enter the stage: IP video contribution.

Taking the next step with IP Video Contribution

IP connectivity is the game-changer for video contribution. Contributing video and audio feeds as streamed data over the internet eliminates the need for dedicated high-cost links.

Today, the use of the Internet with Retransmission protocols (ARQ) is gaining market share at the expense of satellites. Since IP-based solutions can be scaled up and down according to the event it is more economic. What’s more, it is also easier to send specific adapted content to different rights holders.

Satellite is however still used to a large extent because of its proven reliability. Internet-based transport is relatively new, and its reliability is yet to gain the trust of rights holders for the largest events. But the flexibility and cost of IP have enabled smaller events and sports to reach new markets without risking large investments.

The direction of travel is clear. A large portion of video contribution will eventually be made using the unmanaged networks of the Internet and cloud.

The Net Insight Nimbra advantage

Net Insight Nimbra video transport solutions address the demands of live video contribution by facilitating the delivery of content over managed IP networks or via the open internet.

Whether it’s for video contribution over managed IP networks and into public cloud, or for pushing live video to streaming platforms, Net Insight is trusted by broadcasters and video service providers to deliver the largest Tier 1 multi-camera, multi-day events to the smaller-scale live events.

Net Insight technology is the broadcaster’s insurance that the live event will be delivered securely, reliably, without delay, and at optimum quality.

Read more about our different video transport products:


World’s largest Nimbra networks to HD

EBU has selected Nimbra platform for the Eurovision fiber network

The European Broadcasting Union (EBU)

World’s largest alliance of public service media organisation

Since 2004, when the EBU selected Net Insight’s Nimbra platform, the EUROVISION Fibre Network (FiNE) has evolved with Net Insight’s latest products and features.

The EUROVISION satellite and fibre network is one of the largest and most rock solid in the world. It delivers more than 80,000 hours of programming every year, the majority of which is live sports. Its undisputed reputation for flexibility and reliability is reflected in the prestigious events it regularly carries on the EUROVISION network.

“We continue our solid relationship with Net Insight for the development of our network since we aim to be the standardbearer for QoS and reliability around the world.”

Related resources


Cloud Ingest of Live Video

As cloud production becomes an integral part of broadcasters’ live workflows, the corresponding cloud infrastructure becomes an integral part of the media transport network.


Open Insight #2

Welcome to the second edition of Open Insight, where I will share thoughts and updates with our shareholders, other stakeholders and anyone with a general interest in the company.

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Video contribution involves sending a produced event program to different broadcasters who add local elements like logos and commentary, forming a vital transport link in live event workflows​​.

Video contribution is the process of transporting content from studios to broadcasters, while video distribution is about delivering this content to audiences on various devices​​.

Challenges include managing growing content from events, maintaining quality, and maximizing rights monetization in an increasingly complex and cost-sensitive environment​​.

IP connectivity allows for streaming video and audio feeds over the internet, reducing the need for dedicated links and enabling more economic and flexible content delivery​​.