Movie Theaters Using Anti-Piracy Tools to Analyze Your Emotions

Paul Lilly

BitTorrent news site TorrentFreak is up in arms over the anti-piracy measures some movie theaters employ, particularly an anti-camcorder solution offered by Aralia Systems, a company that specializes in monitoring services and technologies. As TorrentFreak explains it, the anti-camcorder system beams infrared light onto movie goers, which are then reflected back off camcorders and analyzed through software capable of reading people's physical reactions and emotions.

TorrentFreak went and spoke with project leader Dr. Abdul Farooq from Machine Vision Lab, who indicated that his company's number one goal is to extend the functionalities of the anti-piracy system.

"We want to devise instruments that will be capable of collecting data that can be used by cinemas to monitor audience reactions to films and adverts and also to gather data about attention and audience movement," Dr. Farooq said.

"Using 2D and 3D imaging technology we aim to do this in two ways. Obviously cinema audiences are spread out in large theater settings so we need to build instruments that can capture data for different purposes. We will use 2D cameras to detect emotion but will also collect movement data through a 3D data measurement that will capture the audience as a whole as a texture," Dr. Farooq further explained.

By analyzing people's emotions, Dr. Farooq envisions his system being used as a market research tool for the movie industry and advertisers rather than as a way to catch pirates.

"Within the cinema industry this tool will feed powerful marketing data that will inform film directors, cinema advertisers, and cinemas with useful data about what audiences enjoy and what adverts capture the most attention," Dr. Farooq added.

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