Multimedia communication and streaming media services will become mainstream network infrastructure applications in the coming decade. However, there are many challenges that must be overcome. These challenges include the Internet’s limited ability to handle real-time, low-latency media streams, the need for media security, and an uncertainty of the killer app. The nature of these challenges lends itself to enabling technology innovations in the media delivery and media processing space. Specifically, we envision an overlay infrastructure that supports networked media services that couple media delivery with in-network media processing. The media overlay should be programmable to allow rapid deployment of new applications and services and manageable so as to support the evolving requirements of the resulting usage models. Furthermore, the media overlay should allow for the delivery of protected media content for applications that have security requirements. A properly architected infrastructure can enable real-time multimedia communication and streaming media services in light of the inherent challenges.