Watching Ads Verified By Facial Recognition Earns Moviegoers Free Ticket

MoviePass cofounder Stacy Spikes wants to give moviegoers a free ticket for watching 15 to 20 minutes of advertisements, with facial recognition technology and the device’s camera confirming the views.

PreShow, an ad-supported platform, is a new concept that Spikes is selling on Kickstarter. Pledges have already surpassed the $10,000 goal and to date, fans of the concept have pledged $46,724 with three days to go.

“Branded content will become the definitive entertainment medium,” Spikes said.

The product becomes the celebrity. PreShow will work with companies like Procter & Gamble to promote its brands such as Tide laundry soap or Ivory soap, which may appear in the movie the moviegoer wants to see. The consumers will log into the app, pick a movie they want to see, and PreShow will run a one- to-three-minute spot on that brand. One brand can buy the entire 15 to 20 minutes.

“The brand may take the entire segment or a portion of it,” Spikes said. “We can tell if the consumer completed the segment through the technology we created.”

The camera on the mobile phone, desktop or laptop device tracks the viewing time through facial recognition, he said. The technology doesn’t record the viewer, but acts more like motion detector in real time to tell is the person walks away from the screen.

Spikes said the company may take the data collection a step further with consent from the viewers. “We’ve talked about collecting high-level aggregate data, but if the brand wants to dive deeper into the data we would have a Nielsen-like panel that would agree to give feedback,” he said. “We’ll figure that out.”

Viewing the entire segment in the app on mobile or desktop earns a moviegoer a free virtual credit card to exchange for a ticket at a participating movie theater.

For the average American, who goes to the movie theater about four times a year, per Google data, earning a free movie pass could become the hot ticket.

“We think we’re tapping into a cultural trend that already exists,” Spikes said. “It gives brands the opportunity to engage with consumers.”

Backers of the Kickstarter campaign automatically become patrons, benefactors, or members of the Founder's Circle, and the first to use PreShow. There’s no subscription or processing fees other than the donation.

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