Internet corporation Yahoo has filed a patent to make ad charges based social reputation of viewers measured in terms of their social media presence.
The patent would help advertisers bid against each other to target users based on the level of authority amongst their peers scored on terms of their social media influence, reports BBC.
According to the report, the number of followers of the user on social media, reference to them in the posts, number of contacts of the users, products they 'like', subscriptions and their suggestions to other users etc., a viewer's social influence can be measured.
While industry consultants find it a creative practice for marketers to use a multiplier effect to influence how brands are perceived to ideally lead to sales, privacy campaigners find it to be another way of collecting data in order to sell advertising.
Director of Big Brother Watch, Nick Pickles, said that users are viewed as products to be monitored, packaged and sold to the highest bidders and hence there is an immediate need to have a stronger consumer privacy protection, the report added.