Mediocracy Starts in Stadiums

The current (March 25) issue of Time Magazine has a number of Robot Futures – relevant stories.  Spy on Sports Fans, by Sean Gregory, reports on the fact that stadiums (stadii?) can now observe the fans’ body movements and eyeballs to see who is looking at the jumbotron when and who is most and least excited by the action on the field. Of course all this feeds into some serious data mining to sell beer to just the right seats, and to upsell cool app’s to the folks whose eyes are forever glued to their smartphone screens. The technologies coming on-line inside stadiums, which are admittedly somewhat controlled-lighting situations, will come to a billboard near you. Which raises an interesting New Mediocracy question– if highway billboards can track eyeballs, and of course they want drivers to look at the advertisements on the billboards, and they fine-tune this by car type over time to absolutely maximize the number of people who stare at the billboard long enough to be advert-hypnotized…does anyone see anything wrong with this picture?


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