Magazine Article

Working While Others Sleep

Adventist Review Media is a round-the-clock operation.

André Brink

Some days are predictable; most are not. Today is one of those days, and as a creative, that’s the way I like it.

It’s early morning: South Africa rises while America still sleeps—a good time to catch up on emails and get ahead with work before the day’s staff meetings: Adventist Review Media is based in Maryland, but its contractors are spread out from America’s East Coast to Canada, England, and here in South Africa, where two of us happen to share a house.

I open an email from Australia and answer it immediately, to get a second response before the writer heads off to bed. It is from a well-known evangelist: “We have some more new episodes for Adventist Review TV [ARtv].” I copy his assistant so that she can send me links to the files, thumbnails, and descriptions of each episode.

I sign in to the back end of ARtv. This is where videos are uploaded and are arranged into categories and collections, where metadata is added and videos are scheduled for future release. We’re now closing in on 1,500 videos from all over the world. Our on-demand streaming channel was the very first in the Seventh-day Adventist Church, and one of the first among religious channels. This was late 2017, years ahead of other streaming giants like Disney, HBO, and Amazon Prime. The Adventist Church is known for being a pioneer in media, having been one of the first religious organizations to broadcast on radio and television. Mission instincts told Adventist Review Ministries that reaching a changing consumer market required the move beyond print and demanded a variety of digital platforms.

I check the time difference with São Paulo, Brazil. I need to talk with a 3-D animator there who is working with us, creating animations for kids. ARtv also produces its own original content, and we are gearing up to launch a KidsView streaming platform this year. I enjoy being part of a team that helps create original content, as well as curating third-party content from producers around the world. Novo Tempo, the South American Hope Channel, will be sharing all their Portuguese and Spanish content with us so that ARtv can soon provide programming in multiple languages.

Later in the day I log on to the daily Adventist Review Ministries staff meeting. The COVID pandemic has not paused our gospel commitment: everyone connects remotely from home if they aren’t living near their offices at headquarters. Connecting to Zoom and interacting with 20 faces on one screen is not quite the same as being in the same room together, but it works for now.

André Brink creates and curates content for Adventist Review TV. In his free time he loves trail running and mountain biking in the mountains and vineyards that surround Somerset West in sunny South Africa. He and his wife, Penny, have a passion for spreading the gospel through innovative methods.

André Brink