Technology is a wondrous thing, and the minds at Google are hoping to leverage science to potentially save us from Game of Thrones and Walking Dead spoilers. Yes, please.
Vulture reports the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has awarded a patent to Google for “content processing” that aims to identify potentially spoilery information related to movies, TV shows and books on social media, then filter them out with a warning that can allow you to automatically block those details, but access them with a click. Taking things a step further, the software would also track what shows/movies you’re interested in and try to focus on what it knows you like.
As anyone who has ever had a massive plot point spoiled by an errant Twitter post can attest, this could be extremely useful. Entertainment is big money these days, and TV/movie posts populate a massive corner of the social media spectrum. Something to help us navigate that spoiler-filled wasteland could do big business for Google, and be insanely useful for fans.
In addition to the obvious applications to keep us from finding out the latest big water-cooler death before we’ve had time to kick back with our DVRs, the tech also has potential academic implications that could be used in classrooms or book clubs to measure progress by users and potentially request spoilers related to a project.
Obviously, there are still more than a few questions here. The first is how Google will scale these concepts outside of their own walled garden (i.e. Google+), and make this applicable on Twitter, Facebook, etc. (you know, the social media platforms people actually use). A Chrome plugin, perhaps? Also, it’ll take some heavy lifting on the back end to actually have this thing smart enough to figure out what we don’t want to see and don’t care about.
But if they’re actually able to figure it out, this could be an insanely handy application. What do you think? Would you use a spoiler blocker?