MLB to Test Teletrax Digital-Watermarking Technology

Content tracking and monitoring firm Teletrax said Major League Baseball will test its digital-watermarking technology during TV coverage of the American and National League playoffs and the World Series, making it the first professional-sports league to do so.

Teletrax -- a division of Medialink Worldwide that is 24% owned by Royal Philips Electronics -- uses its technology to embed an imperceptible and indelible digital watermark into video whenever it is edited, transmitted, broadcast or duplicated. The company has installed monitoring systems in 210 local U.S. markets to track how video is used and counts major U.S. broadcast networks ABC, NBC, Fox and CBS as customers.

MLB will test the Teletrax service through the end of March 2008 to help it assess the broadcast use of its game content beyond the live telecasts.

“Major League Baseball is proud to be pioneering the use of digital-watermarking and broadcast-tracking technology in the American sports industry with Teletrax,” said Elizabeth Scott, vice president of programming and business affairs for MLB Properties, in a statement.

“Its broadcast-verification services will allow us to thoroughly ascertain the reach of our game content and, in turn, better protect the valuable live-game assets we license our broadcast partners, increase footage-licensing revenue and provide valuable information to our sponsors about the impact of their brands beyond the live-game broadcasts,” she added.