Attributor to help Reuters track digital content

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Digital media monitoring company Attributor Corp plans to announce on Monday that it will help track content produced by Reuters Group RTR.L that finds its way onto the Internet.

The explosion in the growth of blogs and social networks such as Facebook and News Corp's NWSa.N MySpace, where consumers link to and borrow content from big content producers, makes tracking services valuable to companies.

One way that companies like Reuters reach new viewers is by syndicating text, photography and videos.

But discovering what consumers do with the media is difficult.

“We may find that people are using our content in unidentified ways, so we can identify revenue models to capture that,” said Ric Camacho, vice president of digital syndication at Reuters.

Video programming owners have pushed sites such as Google’s YouTube to better track copyrighted videos that are uploaded by its millions of users, often without permission.

But Reuters said the deal had less to do with chasing piracy. “It’s not really about slapping people’s hands,” Camacho said. “It’s about establishing relationships.”

Initially, Attributor, which uses so-called fingerprinting technology that extracts identifying traits in text or photos, will track text sources as it monitors billions of pages on the Web to discover real-time usage information.

“More and more content monetization will happen off of the publisher’s site,” said Attributor Chief Executive Jim Brock, a former Yahoo Inc executive.

“To capture it, you have to know where it goes,” Brock added.

Financial terms of the deal were not furnished.