Opencast is a term to describe audio and video content, primarily in an academic context. It combines the terms "Open" for Open Source and/or Open Access and "Broadcast". The term has been coined in the context of the Opencast Community and the Opencast Matterhorn project.
The Opencast Community was initiated by UC Berkeley in 2007 to coordinate academic institutions, individuals and companies interested in the production, management, and distribution of academic video.
The Opencast Matterhorn project stems from the Opencast Community in that 13 institutions from North America and Europe initiated a cooperation in 2009 to build an Open Source software to produce, manage and distribute academic audio and video content, with a focus on lecture recordings. The project received funding from the Hewlett Foundation and the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. Matterhorn 1.0 was released in 2010; the software is built in Java with an OSGi framework.
With the end of the yearlong funding period, community and project set themselves up as an open source initiative, driven by the various stakeholders (academic institutions, commercial partners). Communication around related issues happens on the homepage and via the mailinglist.
Coinciding with the release of version 2.0 in the summer of 2015, "Opencast Matterhorn" was renamed "Opencast" to denote the end of the (Matterhorn) project and its transformation into an (Open Source) product. The Opencast Community joined the Apereo Foundation at the same time.