“Privacy fears are a major factor in broadband consumers’ online media experiences,” Glenn Hower, senior analyst at Parks Associates, observes. “Advertisers have the most to gain by leveraging viewership data, and those advantages will only increase as they acquire more personal information such as search histories.”
The research firm suggests consumer trepidation will only grow after last week’s news that the Senate voted to kill the FCC’s controversial broadband privacy rules via the Congressional Review Act. While that measure still needs approval by the House of Representatives and the president to take effect, people are showing wariness around the idea that ISPs could sell collected consumer data without requiring opt-in consent. Parks also notes some consumer anxiety around Google’s move to allow advertisers to target YouTube ads based solely on a consumer’s search history.
According to Parks Associates “360 View: Digital Media & Connected Consumers,” 59 percent of pay TV subscribers in U.S. broadband households are bothered that advertisers use their personal viewing data to push personalized ads to them. The report also says that nearly 40 percent of pay TV subscribers worry about the safety and use of their personal data when they use an online video service.
What might quell some of the angst? Parks suggests that both pay TV operators and advertisers need to be transparent about their data collection and protection of consumers’ information. These efforts are especially important for pay TV providers, the research firm says, since its research show 34 percent of U.S. pay TV subscribers indicate they trust an online video service more than they trust their current pay TV provider.
More on the report is here.
Filed Under: Industry regulations