TV and the Internet and Vice Versa

Once upon a time movie musicals were made from Broadway shows. Now the opposite is true: most of the musicals on Broadway come from source material originally produced or published in another medium, and very often movies. There’s a sort of vague analogy there to what’s happening with television, as it fights to remain relevant to advertisers amid all the targeting innovation online and the migration of audiences.

Today’s WSJ features an article about Cox Cable offering behavioral and demographic targeting via set-top box data and the ability to make quasi-dynamic adjustments to ad campaigns. This is the future of cable advertising, Google or no Google, to be sure:

The results were part of a test conducted by RE/MAX and closely held Cox Communications in parts of Southern California to try out a new electronic ad-network platform and targeting system for cable TV. The goal: offer marketers an environment similar to online advertising, where marketers can target consumers, as well as quickly place ads and measure its effectiveness.

Abby Lee, director of regional advertising at RE/MAX, said the test gave her more information about where her ads were being viewed, as well as a way to quickly change ad-buying plans, much like on the Web.

The article points out that no personally identifiable information is available but that’s also true of most BT programs online as well. As advertising becomes more “relevant,” it becomes less manipulative in a way — and that’s good. However, the “creep factor” of being tracked is both disturbing and sure to raise more eyebrows in Washington too.


Here’s a related piece from MediaPost on European scrutiny of BT practices and the US-proposed “do not track list,” which is a direct reaction to the prevalence of BT online.

One Response to “TV and the Internet and Vice Versa”

  1. fred333 Says:

    I hope it raises eyebrows in Washington.

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