Hulu, the popular video streaming service, is expressing measured optimism with regards to the potential of blockchain technology solving issues faced by the advertising industry, especially in the areas of data privacy and brand trust.
Adam Moser, the head of ad tech and platform operations at Hulu, recently said in a report on PC Mag, that although the firm is not at the moment, pursuing any blockchain applications, it is thrilled about the promise the innovation brings.
“Blockchain is interesting to use because trust, transparency, all of those things matter to marketers. They’re critical from our standpoint not just as Hulu as a brand, but also Hulu as a media publisher. So when we meet with companies that are talking about blockchain solutions, I think the promise of what they can bring to the landscape, specifically regarding transparency and the ability to be able to track transactional details in an open and decentralized way, is something we’re in support of for the industry.”
Moser was speaking from the sidelines of the CDX Blockchain Brand Innovation Summit at Columbia University. He added that Hulu is taking a “wait-and-see approach” to blockchain applications, stresssing that smart contracts are still so nascent that the industry has not yet even reached a consensus as to which challenges this technology can tackle and perhaps, resolve.
“Everyone is talking about how blockchain is going to solve for smart contracts, for transparency, for streamlining data targeting…those are three very different avenues. I think this is a potential path forward to solve challenges within our industry, but we have to decide which challenge we want to solve for,” Moser said, saying that applications do not provide solutions to each and every problem there is.
“Every time we talk to these companies and they ask if we want to run a test, we take a wait-and-see approach. We want to test-drive the car when it’s been built, not as it’s being built,” he added. “The way we integrate our service onto gaming platforms, smart TVs, etc., it requires a different approach. If a solution comes to us and says it may work on Xbox and Playstation but not on Roku or Apple TV, it doesn’t work for Hulu.”
In spite of that, the company is hopeful that it can make use of blockchain technology to normalize the buy side and sell side of the video advertising market, as well as offer advertisers with transparency into pricing and other significant data such as whether their ads are being reaching their target demographic.
“Blockchain [shows] a decentralized and open way that marketers can understand how their inventory is being bought and how they’re being charged,” he said.
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