Inscape’s Neumeier On The Privacy Of Smart TV Viewers’ Behavior

As the rolling stone of digital privacy concerns has gathered more moss over the last couple of years, could TVs become the next device to worry consumers?

In the practice of automated content recognition (ACR), a television set listens to or analyzes a viewers’ current viewing behavior to turn habits like viewing time and channel in to actionable data.

That is something ad-tech vendor Inscape can do better than most, because its technology is integrated in to TV sets from Vizio, by dint of being wholly operated by the manufacturer. Data is currently coming from more than eight million active TVs.

So how does Inscape product SVP Zeev Neumeier assess the privacy issue?

“We are the cleanest data in the market,” he tells Beet.TV in this video interview. “The entirety of the Vizio dataset is 100% opt-in. We have a very high opt-in rate, but it’s not anywhere near 100. That makes us feel very comfortable that those people who genuinely do not feel comfortable participating in this dataset have an opportunity and are able to get out.”

In January, marketing technology firm 4C Insights inked a deal with Inscape allowing its customers to target ads on TV or social media to people who have or haven’t watched particular programs, have or haven’t been exposed to particular TV spots, or those who don’t watch linear television at all.

Unlike traditional methods of measuring audience viewing, ACR allows more granular understanding of watch time, show and channel selection, combined with more specific audience characteristics.

“There is a very clear opt-in where to the consumer is explained in layman’s terms exactly what it is we are doing in the way that is understandable and people can then choose whether they want to participate on that,” Neumeier adds.

“We only count TVs that are active, that are still opted in, that are generating clean data.”