AV Tech Facilitates Virtual World Literacy Awards

Partnership between World Literacy Foundation and NewTek keeps mission-critical awards show live and engaging across the globe
(Image credit: NewTek)

The World Literacy Foundation recently announced the winners of its World Literacy Awards, honors given to those who proactively foster literacy skills among the 773 million people across the globe who, according to UNESCO research, still cannot read and write.

The Awards took place online as many locations around the world still struggle with the effects of the global pandemic. This required a creative and unique live stream that brought in participants across multiple time zones. Luckily, one of the World Literacy Foundation’s partners is Vizrt Group, the world’s leading provider of visual storytelling tools for media content creators seeking to provide more stories, better told.

“When we first partnered with World Literacy Foundation in 2020, just before the effects of the global pandemic set in, we saw a philosophical alignment where the Vizrt Group could harness its technology and expertise in order to help children from disadvantaged backgrounds access stories and learning resources,” said Petter Ole Jakobsen, founder and chief innovation officer at the Vizrt Group.

Jakobsen continued, “The fact that we have spent the past 18 months working on ways to keep content in production during the challenges of the pandemic meant we were able to offer an innovative solution for the WLF Awards, a key awareness raising event for the organization. We felt honored to be in the position where we could assist in making that happen.”

Creating and operating an awards show on a global scale is no small challenge, but was made possible through just two NewTek products. The ground-breaking TriCaster 2 Elite and Talkshow VS4000 devices were connected through NDI(R) on the home network of Liam Hayter, Senior Solutions Architect at NewTek. From his home, Hayter brought a total of six Skype TX channels in for the host and guest presenter judges.

NewTek Helps to Facilitate Global Awards Show

Through TriCaster 2 Elite’s Live Call Connect feature, Hayter brought 50 nominees for the awards into the production as “virtual awards attendees.” Through producers based in Luxembourg controlling Zoom, it was possible to spotlight the winners as they were brought on air.

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“This kept the awards experience intact by offering the exciting element of surprise that is so often lacking with online ceremonies,” Hayter said. “As a single operator at home, the TriCaster was automated using a combination of our powerful Macro engine and LivePanel custom web GUI to sequentially run graphics, switching, and M/E layouts to run the show in a simple, repeatable manner for both rehearsals and the live event itself. It was a very exciting setup and a really thrilling outcome for all involved.”

The WLF Awards were live streamed to YouTube through the on-board streaming encoders available on every TriCaster.

“We were able to provide a professional and engaging broadcast to our global audience thanks to the Vizrt Group team, and we feel the charitable partnership has been made even stronger in the process,” said Caroline Burkie, COO at The World Literacy Foundation.

The event can be seen on-demand here. The focus of the 2021 Awards was on the need to bridge the digital literacy divide highlighted by the pandemic in the world’s poorest communities. Children from low socioeconomic backgrounds, with limited access to books, technology, and the internet, have been most seriously affected during this global education crisis. The World Literacy Foundation continues to ask for support as it addresses this new challenge. For more information on donating, visit.

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