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Archive for Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Kiosks planned on KU campus to offer information; software includes ability to recognize types of people viewing ads

August 30, 2011, 3:35 p.m. Updated August 31, 2011, 10:15 a.m.

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This rendering features an early design of one of six information kiosks planned for locations at the Kansas Union and at the Underground dining facility at Wescoe Hall. Mike Reid, director of public affairs for the KU Memorial Unions, said that the final product may not look exactly like this rendering, but it will likely be close.

This rendering features an early design of one of six information kiosks planned for locations at the Kansas Union and at the Underground dining facility at Wescoe Hall. Mike Reid, director of public affairs for the KU Memorial Unions, said that the final product may not look exactly like this rendering, but it will likely be close.

Related document

Pilot Project Agreement ( .PDF )

New kiosks planned for various Kansas University on-campus locations will offer interactive campus maps, event calendars and games for students and visitors. The kiosks will also offer advertising space, and will employ software to provide demographic information to advertisers through a visual feed.

The KU Memorial Unions, a non-profit organization that is financially separate from the university that operates the KU unions and dining facilities, has a contract with Lawrence-based Axon Displays for a one-year pilot program to operate the kiosks.

The software can’t recognize individual people, said Bob Terry, president of Axon Displays, LLC, who also owns Star Signs, 801 E. Ninth St. The company isn’t keeping any images generated from the program.

“It doesn’t infringe on anybody’s identity or ability to be anonymous in any way,” Terry said.

The software does, he said, sort users into one of four demographic categories — an adult male, an adult female, a child or a senior citizen. The kiosks can keep track of that information and provide advertisers with information on the kinds of people who are looking at their ads, Terry said.

The company has installed similar kiosks in Newton that feature community information, Terry said, but KU is the first university to try the product.

Mike Reid, director of public affairs, said that the unions would receive 20 percent of all the advertising revenue generated from the kiosks. Three kiosks are planned for the Kansas Union, two for the Underground dining facility at Wescoe Hall and one for a as-yet undetermined location, possibly inside a library, Terry said.

Advertising revenue will pay for their installation, which is set to occur in the next few weeks, Reid said.

Reid said he hoped that the more than six-feet-tall kiosks will serve as a place for students to obtain information. They will provide content from University Relations’ news feeds and social media accounts, he said. Terry said the kiosks may also feature games.

The unions did place a few restrictions on the kinds of advertising that could be used in the kiosks, according to the terms of the contract setting up the program.

Axon Displays will sell the advertising, but can’t feature some kinds of ads, including ones for alcohol, tobacco, unlawful substances or any ads that compete with Coca-Cola, the exclusive beverage provider for the KU campus. Also forbidden are ads for bookstores, other institutions of higher learning, firearms, sexual aids, condoms or other sexually related products.

This article has been updated to reflect the correct title for Mike Reid, director of public affairs for the KU Memorial Unions, and corrects an attribution error.

Comments

ljwhirled 3 years ago

Great, just what we need. Kiosks that watch us and report back to the Interweb.

How is this Okay with the administration? They won't allow cell sites on campus (other than 1 sprint site) so that the kids can get cell service, but kiosks who watch the traffic for their corporate masters are fine.

I wonder what the vendor is allowed to do with the video feed? Do you think they can sell access on warm summer days? I bet there are a lot of pervs out there that would love that.

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JM Andy 3 years ago

Will they be accessible to people with all types of disabilities? Better check the ADA and Rehab Act before you discriminate.

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ladykess 3 years ago

They said the kiosks are being paid for by the money made from the ads that will be displayed on them, silly!

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johnwoods 3 years ago

The Unions are not operated with state tax dollars Southside, and like KRichards states..the units are not being purchased by the Union.

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glcshowtime 3 years ago

Awesome!! Digital signage has finally arrived in the heartland! Today's "millennials" demand hi-tech messages for information and per-sway-sive messages. As a business owner, I want and need demographics to support my ad budget, as well as the feedback to plan long term campaigns. Count me in!!

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classclown 3 years ago

glcshowtime (anonymous) says…

Awesome!! Digital signage has finally arrived in the heartland! Today's "millennials" demand hi-tech messages for information and per-sway-sive messages. As a business owner, I want and need demographics to support my ad budget, as well as the feedback to plan long term campaigns. Count me in!!

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I take it that it's been several years since you've been to Wichita.

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LogicMan 3 years ago

"I love Big Brother."

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George_Braziller 3 years ago

Big Brother indeed. This is pretty creepy.

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ladykess 3 years ago

oh, everyone calm down about the big-brother on this one.. the kiosks will only read a person to display ads that fit that demographic.. no one is watching you here. trust me, none of us are that interesting..

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George_Braziller 3 years ago

Oh ONLY read a person's demographic.

"......the kiosks will only read a person to display ads that fit that demographic......."

"....no one is watching you here."

Reading demographics isn't "watching?"

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Flap Doodle 3 years ago

I want to see what type of ad it shows to hollis.

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bevy 3 years ago

Time magazine had a great article on data-mining a while back. Here's the link, and a snippet: http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,2058205-2,00.html

---------snip-------- Russell Glass, the CEO of Bizo — which mines the fact that people are business executives and sells that info to hundreds of advertisers such as American Express, Monster.com, Citibank, Sprint and Google — says the newness of his industry is what scares people. "It's the monster-under-the-bed syndrome," Glass says. "People are afraid of what they really don't understand. They don't understand that companies like us have no idea who they are. And we really don't give a s — -. I just want a little information that will help me sell you an ad."

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equalaccessprivacy 3 years ago

Who wants to be sorted into demographic piles? Sounds insulting and simple-minded.

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