Nielsen To Police Web With Anti-Piracy Watermarking Scheme

Nielsen has teamed up with Digimarc to create Nielsen Digital Media Manager, earnest-sounding software that will "use digital watermarking and fingerprinting to establish an industry-wide rules-based solution to copyright security and to assure copyright compliance." While much of this pertains to Nielsen's core business, tracking the popularity of shows, it is very much a security system:

Content owners can leverage the popularity of new media distribution channels by identifying what content is being shared, viewed, mashed up or accessed. This intelligence enables content owners to make meaningful decisions on what content to allow or disallow on such sites.
I guess this means Nielsen no longer needs our explicit participation in order to see what's popular. Makes me feel a bit scared and a bit used. [DigiMarc/Nielsen via Reuters]