The need for industry collaboration is a consistent theme when advanced television is discussed. Nowhere is this more salient than in the quest to determine the identity of individual viewers and design unduplicated reach curves for advertising. Because while unduplicated reach has been attainable in digital media, “when we start to include television or traditional media platforms into that, it’s basically been a black hole,” says Furious Corp.’s CEO Ashley J. Swartz.

To help shed more light on the subject, Beet.TV will conduct a half-day forum titled Identity in Focus: Understanding the Cross-Screen Consumer in a Fragmented World on March 5. It will be hosted by Viacom at the company’s offices at 1515 Broadway in Manhattan and sponsored by 4INFO, a provider of identity graph technology. Swartz will be one of the event’s moderators.

In this video, Swartz explains the complexity of determining who is watching what content on what device and when they are doing so. It starts with the myriad ways that individual TV viewers can be tracked—including mobile apps that can hear what’s being watched, digital IP-enabled devices, mobile device ID’s, automatic content recognition and watermarking.

Then there are companies like Nielsen and Comscore that are “trying to develop currencies that leverage all these technologies to actually track what is real reach for a specific piece of content delivered to an audience across an ecosystem and broad reaching selection of devices and platforms,” Swartz says.

So how does it all become real? For Swartz, it boils down to being confident about the data involved and data providers working together, because no one media company has an audience with the “order of magnitude of the breadth of an audience and the reach of an audience that television provides.”

Ultimately, “multiple data providers and platforms and content recognition providers are going to have to come together to marry their data sets to maximize the total audience within an identity graph they make available,” she says.

“The data I get has to be reliable, easy to use and integrated into ad delivery systems to plan against and has to be easy to buy. Not just easy to buy from the perspective of understanding the value of the inventory and what you’re getting for your dollar or what the effective CPM or effective rate is. That’s complex.”

At the Beet.TV event on March 5, Swartz will be joined by moderators Howard Shimmel, formerly of Turner Broadcasting and now a consultant, and Matt Prohaska of Prohaska Consulting.  The entire program will be taped before a studio audience for publication on Beet.TV.