Four of the five BBG broadcasters have now migrated to the same web publishing platform – developed by Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty – saving more than $1 million a year…
In August, BBG broadcasters received more than 31 million visits to their online and mobile web sites – garnering more than 75 million page views.
The overwhelming majority of the news stories were published on a newly shared Content Management System (CMS) called Pangea.
The five BBG broadcasters previously used five different systems, leading to not only an inefficient use of funds, but an inability to easily share content between them. The CMS issue is just one of several instances where BBG broadcasters, too often operating in silos, missed out on opportunities to interact and save money through efficiencies.
The Pangea CMS was developed at Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, and was not only identified as superior to those used elsewhere in the agency, but it was owned outright by the agency – allowing Voice of America, for example, to drop its expensive licensed CMS software.
Originally identified by the Office of Strategy and Development, the migration to a shared CMS offered up more than $1 million in annual savings, according to Andre Mendes, Director of BBG Technology, Services, and Innovation.
With RFE/RL already on board, migrating Radio and TV Martí as well as Alhurra television and Radio Sawa proved relatively easy considering OCB and MBN handle just Spanish and Arabic respectively.
Voice of America, with some 40 language services, presented a more robust challenge. Not only were there more languages and related fonts, but the services themselves varied significantly in content output.
In response, the Office of Digital Design and Innovation charged a team led by Marlene Wright and Matthew Baise to develop a handful of Pangea templates based on broadcast service complexity, ranging from relatively simple to full service in nature.
Services were loosely grouped and assigned a template. After migrating to Pangea, services could then customize their offerings further.
Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, Voice of America, Radio and TV Martí, and Middle Eastern Broadcasting Networks are all now using Pangea to publish on the web. Only Radio Free Asia remains out of the mix, using an open-source CMS called Plone.
August 2012 BBG online and mobile web stats: