Yahoo! Acquires Social TV App IntoNow, Has the Potential to Make TV Invasive

The big Social TV news of the day is that Yahoo! has just acquired the 12 week old company, IntoNow. When it first launched its Shazam/Foursquare-like service earlier this year I was excited by its potential to transform the way watch and share our TV experiences, but now I’m having second thoughts — thanks to PCWorld.

PCWorld writes:

Advertisers will be able to push content to your smartphone or tablet, so you get the groovy cola game or coupon for pizza while the commercial is still smacking your eyeballs. It’s everything an adman could want: Immediacy, reach, frequency, personalization, monetization and a whole bunch of other -ations that may or may not have anything to do with “making television more social, engaging and personalized.”

All true. Do we really want that level of monitoring in order to serve us personalized content?

I liken Yahoo!’s plans for the service — specifically SoundPrint — to what Google and other ad firms are doing to track the sites we visit and the items we’re looking to purchase. We’re already seeing push back with “do not track” web browser initiatives. Then there was that big iPhone location tracking scandal [new] this past week. On the other hand, it would be neat to have an app that can pull in related content to our second screen devices in real-time based on the shows and commercials we’re currently watching — hopefully without the need for personal information being gathered, stored, or shared with third-parties (do you really think Yahoo! or IntoNow’s partners will be able to restrain themselves?).

I don’t know folks… I’m on the fence on this one. The truth is, though, it’s just an app and no one is forcing you to use it if you don’t want to. What say you?


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Filed in: Industry Buzz, Portable Media Players, Software