Minority Report was one of the most compelling near future science fiction films in recent memory, and its dynamic of personalized ads resonated with many people long after seeing the film. That sort of personalized ad technology could be coming soon, being able to serve ads based around the viewers general demographic and perhaps being powered by social networks.

“Steven Spielberg got it wrong,” says Daniel Steinbichler, 3MGTG’s chief executive. “It will be more advanced than the director ever imagined. Instead of just recognizing consumers by name, technology such as gladvertising will allow brands to offer interactive experiences.”

The presence of the ads is worrying to privacy experts. Many are wondering whom will be collecting this personal data and how it will be collected. “We feel that it is an industry that has so far gone unchallenged and because of this they are developing some scary stuff,” Alexander Hanff from Privacy International. “We have a situation where the boundaries between our online and offline worlds become even more blurred and we currently have no regulatory or legislative regime in place to deal with these dangers.”

There’s been some talk of offering a service for the information, like what some public WiFi spots do. Others consider it to be a generational thing. “It’s about the younger generations that are going to be the early adopters and the leaders and the educators and the influencers, said Dr. Frank Shaw, who wrote the report. “I think the power of what we’re talking about is that the consumer is going to want to participate. If you see those guys in Times Square, playing on the digital boards – that’s exciting! That’s what they want to do.”

“Naturally there are going to be anxieties and concerns about intrusive behavior, about security issues and so on,” added Shaw. “I think, though, that over time the consumer in their experience of the technology is going to become increasingly more comfortable. Don’t forget, we have this wonderful invention called the off button!”

Source: BBC