Monday, June 11, 2007

The networks' web conversion experience has a creepy side

Cynthia Little has written quite the interesting article in last Friday's Variety, "Networks go on blitz for Web hits: CBS, Fox, NBC adopt online syndie strategies."

She runs down the ways the major networks have gone from hand wringing to high fiving the many compliments it's received from the great www. They've realized the sincerity of this particular form of flattery and have moved from litigating to monetizing.

I'm so happy for everyone. Happy. Happy. Happy. But then there was a bit about the depth of demographic information suddenly available to data miners. While I'm always happy for every bit of this kind of data when I'm developing a campaign, as a consumer, it creeped me out.

... CBS brass are as intrigued by how much the electronic connection of the Web will allow them to study their consumers in granular detail. Do "CSI" fans also tend to like Avril Lavigne? Do "America's Next Top Model" viewers spend more time on fashion-oriented Web sites? The marketing and sales potential of the kind of demographic and audience profile data that can be built on the back of every download is astounding, Smith says.

You may look at my chunks, but my grains are private.