Customer Story

Balancing User Experience and Security For AMC

AMC leveraged to share pre-release content securely with everyone from press reviewers to PR teams.

The Challenge

Al Perry, VP of intellectual property protection at AMC Networks, has had a long-held desire to see an industry-wide screening platform that works well for everyone from press reviewers to PR teams while still remaining secure. His colleagues in the public relations team shared the same dream. Devin Johnson, SVP of Public Relations, AMC Networks, and his team in the press department successfully used an independently built press screening room platform that worked well for their team. But they weren’t sure they were serving critics to their utmost ability.

“The primary pain point was that journalists are asked to use a multitude of online press screening rooms — all with unique URLs, accounts, passwords, and interfaces,” says Johnson. “We wanted to showcase our content securely while delivering the best user experience for our media colleagues.” Johnson was aware of the positive feedback journalists were sharing for a new platform called, so he immediately sought out a demo.

The Solution

“I appreciated the offering’s user experience, presentation of content, and focus on security,” Johnson says of

The AMC Networks team tested, using it to make several episodes of Blue Planet II available to reviewers and to help promote their buzzy prestige drama Killing Eve.

Product Adoption

The initial results were promising. While they weren’t quite an apples-to-apples comparison because the shows they rolled out both were generating media buzz, the press team did see an increase in user engagement versus their previous press screening room platform. “We saw positive posts on Twitter when we released the final episode of Killing Eve to journalists on,” says Johnson.

The platform was also well-liked by his colleagues. “The user template made the account upload seamless, and we are able to successfully keep track of who is using the platform,” says Johnson. “The interface is also simple, and episode and show upload has great quality control tools that make it easy to preview the content and its graphics before making live and sharing with users.”

To roll out more broadly across the entire organization, however, the platform needed to gain the blessing of Perry and his security team.

“The user template made the account upload seamless, and we are able to successfully keep track of who is using the platform. The interface is also simple, and episode and show upload has great quality control tools that make it easy to preview the content and its graphics before making live and sharing with users.”

Devin Johnson, SVP of Public Relations, AMC Networks

Perry was aware of the MediaSilo platform, which had passed muster with the security team at BBC Worldwide. “I have the impression MediaSilo with the Screeners platform is very much about creating a good client and end-user interface and experience,” says Perry. “That pleases me because that’s what the business is about: getting the content to the reviewers in a way that is user-friendly.”

But Perry wanted to ensure that was putting just as much emphasis on security as user experience, noting that convenience and cost are often the twin foes of content security. He wanted to avoid critics getting so frustrated with managing multiple screening platforms that they instead demand a screener DVD, which Perry calls “a nightmare from a security perspective.”

Security uses on-demand watermarking technology as an added layer of protection, personalizing each piece of content with visible or forensic information specific to the journalist viewing it. “Watermarking is an effective deterrent,” says Perry. “I think when you can make it convenient, not costly in terms of resources or time or money, and make it dynamic, that’s a good thing.”

Perry looks at several criteria when evaluating and selecting new vendors. “First, I want to know that we have common goals, that we’re both aiming to provide the best platform, the best user experience, and to do it with the best available security,” he says. “Then I want to know that the vendor is bringing to it the resources to make it as much of a reality as it can be.” Perry acknowledges that, inevitably, things will go wrong in any relationship, despite best efforts to plan ahead. “I want to know that this partner I’ve engaged, they are going to be there with me as we deal with the problems that will inexorably arise,” he says.

His experience with the responsiveness of the team at along with the knowledge that others he respects in the industry had good things to say about the company, were enough to give Perry the confidence to move into the next stage of evaluation, which included an exhaustive third-party security assessment performed by Kroll.

“I was hearing that reviewers were clamoring for, which makes sense, because they are the end users. Then I started to hear from my colleagues in publicity that they wanted this because their reviewers wanted it. When we started looking into it, I thought maybe there’s a chance that this might get actually gain wide adoption and become close to an industry-wide platform, which is something that I’ve wanted for awhile.”

-Al Perry, VP of Intellectual Content Protection, AMC

Testing the Value

The first test for was to replicate a report that allows Perry to keep a close eye on unauthorized use of the platform. “I want to know if critic X for publication Y has logged in from two different states and two different countries in a 48-hour period on Z number of devices,” he says. “Then I can talk to publicity and discuss how we want to handle this.”

Critic and Reviewer Relationships

Besides cracking down on potential hackers, has allowed the AMC Networks public relations team to have better interactions with reviewers and critics. “We only want to contact journalists when necessary,” Johnson explains. “The user management tool confirms the receipt of the screeners link and if they have watched the content. This allows us to connect with journalists that we know are engaged with the content. In addition, it eliminates unnecessary guesswork and follow-up emails.”

AMC Networks looks forward to continuing to put through the paces. “A successful rollout is always ongoing, because every day you’re rolling it out to new users, with new use cases,” Perry explains. “But we’re cautiously optimistic that this will get us closer to the ideal of a win-win for end users, my colleagues, and the industry.” by EditShare manages all aspects of video playback and security using state-of-the-art watermarking for delivery, combined with a comprehensive set of tools for creating, inviting, and updating a growing audience of reviewers. You can focus on nurturing press relationships, while we oversee the technology and ensure security.

Contact us to set up a demo of the industry’s premier virtual screening room platform.