BOSTON, MA, February 9, 2009 – Backchannelmedia, an interactive TV technology provider, announced today that Gray Television (NYSE: GTN), a television broadcast company based in Atlanta, has signed an agreement for the Gray Television station group to deploy the Backchannelmedia Clickable TV solution. Gray Television’s 36 local broadcast TV stations’ combined reach is approximately 7 million U.S. households (6.2% of U.S. homes) and Backchannelmedia will deploy the opt-in Clickable TV technology on a per station basis until reaching full deployment in all Gray Television stations. This expands Backchannelmedia's deployment roster to 68 television stations reaching approximately 16.7% of U.S. television households.
Participating viewers will be prompted to interact by small, non-intrusive icons (sometimes referred to as “bugs”) located at the bottom of their TV screen. These on screen icons indicate a “clickable moment,” an opportunity for the viewer to click one button on their remote control and “bookmark” that content to the viewer's private web portal or email address. This secure web portal, accessible through any Web browser, serves as a centralized hub of that viewer’s digital TV media interests. Users of Clickable TV can schedule automatic e-mail updates of TV bookmarks to any e-mail account or e-mail-enabled mobile device.
The Clickable TV solution works through over the air digital broadcast and other providers, including cable and satellite. This new interactive opt-in revenue stream for broadcasters unites the mass media reach of TV with the precise engagement metrics of the Internet. As viewers interact and opt-in with clickable moments, Gray Television and its advertisers will collect valuable data on viewer interaction, which in time brings valuable engagement metrics to the advertiser for both live and time-shifted programming. This new advertising and content inventory created by the clickable moment allows TV stations to sell advertising avails on a “per click” basis in addition to impression based TV commercials. Clickable TV was designed with consumer privacy in mind, is free from behavioral targeting, provides consumers with the control to manage their opt-in data, and is spam and click fraud free.
"We spent several months researching the technical feasibility and consumer appeal of Backchannelmedia's clickable television," said Robert S. Prather, Jr., president of Gray Television. "We are excited by the prospects of utilizing our digital spectrum to not only potentially launch a new revenue stream but also to engage our viewers in such a powerful way."
“We’re confident that our interactive technology will help prepare Gray Television for the new digital age of television, provide their viewers with a useful and enjoyable experience, and help their advertisers connect with viewers in new ways, “ said Michael Kokernak, co-CEO, Backchannelmedia.
“Clickable TV became a reality upon the launch of our market trials in May 2008,” said Dan Hassan, Co-CEO, Backchannelmedia. “The response from consumers has been overwhelmingly positive and our partnership with Gray will further speed the rollout of Clickable TV to consumers."