Nielsen has partnered with Digimarc to digitally “watermark” or fingerprint video clips from media companies circulating on the Internet. Clips would have a unique ID and specific rules could be assigned to govern their uploading and distribution accordingly, to prevent copyright infringement.
As the Wall Street Journal explains, “once identified, the program will check its database for video-distribution rules given by the media company that produced the clip. For instance, the video may be allowed to load, or perhaps load only if it is attached to a particular piece of advertising. Or, if the video hasn’t been authorized by the media company, it won’t be allowed to load at all.”
Nielsen is facing several more established competitors in this effort, including AudibleMagic, among others. And Google has introduced its own proprietary system for YouTube. According to the WSJ piece, Nielsen plans to expand the offering to DVDs/movies, videogames, and music in 2008.