In April 2000 I first learned about TVeyes.com from this company press release:
Most experts agree that watching too much television is bad for humans, but it’s the key to success for a new Internet company called TVEyes.com. Southport, CT- Even as TV is blamed for everything from teenage violence to declining morals, TVEyes.com has a new vision for watching television. The Southport, CT company tracks keywords on network, cable and satellite television broadcasts—and sends instant e-mail alerts to users when their requested keywords have been spoken on TV. Users can obtain a transcript of the text in which their keywords appear, as well as a brief history of the previous mentions. TVEyes also can instantly link users back to the web sites of the TV show or network where the keywords were mentioned. Best of all, these services are absolutely free. The initial target user has been the individual with a specific interest who can’t stay glued to the TV set (such as an investor trying to monitor the buzz on a stock). But because of its own buzz, TVEyes has positioned itself to make a play for marketing and PR professionals, information outlets, corporations, watch dog groups, politicos and lawyers—even as it continues to cater to its base of loyal individuals. TVEyes.com is the brainchild of software wizard David Ives, who has created his own patent pending technology. Because the system is automated, TVEyes can watch television around the clock and send real time e-mails to users whenever their keywords are spoken. Other monitoring companies and clipping services have humans watching endless hours of TV, only to notify subscribers hours or even days later. Talk about burnout. Coupling a less labor-intensive system with significant ad revenues allows TVEyes to offer its services for free. TVEyes.com recently completed its Series A round of funding led by Redstone7/Trident Ventures. The undisclosed amount of initial funding will go to expanding coverage in local and international markets, and to creating full-service programs for both the professional and non-professional user.
TVEyes used to be text based. But try it out today. Search for any keyword and TVEyes will bring up matching online video clips (recorded from television.)
Click here to see a TVEyes search on the word Google. About 25 TV clips come up that mentioned Google in the last few months.
You do have to endure a 30-second advertisement to get to the video clip you want; but over time I think this model will become more flexible.
The two year Alexa chart for TVEyes isn’t great, but it does look they are beginning to gain some momentum.