Monday, May 30, 2011

Complaining about CRAIG'S LIST and IMDB

Craig's List is very frustrating to me. On almost every movie I make I hire someone off Craig's List. It's an invaluable tool. Yet their system of letting their users flag and remove posts is ridiculous. Whenever I post in Los Angeles for free intern help, or even low paying crew positions, they are almost immediately removed. I think it's from union workers who are upset that I'm hiring people for such low rates. I've just accepted it now and expect it. If I post for a free intern it will generally be removed within five minutes. An ad for a low paid crew position might last a day. Craig's list allows posting for unpaid interns (that's why they have an unpaid category), it's just certain vigilante citizens out there would rather spend their time deleting valid opportunities for young filmmakers than actually finding work for themselves.

I have learned to hate IMDB. When I first appeared on IMDB I was so excited. Now I hate how important IMDB has become. My recent movie Surrogate Valentine has been playing to exceptional reviews and audience response. We're self distributing, so positive word-of-mouth is critical to our success. Yet IMDB's "weighted" user review system is out to get us. They won't disclose how their system works, but I imagine it's using the same technology that their "Kevin Bacon game" and "people-you've worked with" tool use to see if people who are rating your movie have ever worked with you before, or might know you. Well Surrogate Valentine has received 40 votes as of today. 3 ones, 1 four and everything else above a six or above, including 21 tens. Yet our IMDB score is 4! Our arithmetic mean is 8.4, but apparently the three people who gave us Ones, are the most important people in the world. It hurst us because IMDB has become a powerful word-of-mouth generating tool. A lot of people look there to see what ratings movies have before deciding to go see it - including myself.

Grrr! (You can rate it here, by the way:

User ratings for  Surrogate Valentine (2011

40 IMDb users have given a weighted average vote of 4.0 / 10
Demographic breakdowns are shown below.
Votes Percentage Rating
21 52.5%10
4 10.0%9
7 17.5%8
2 5.0%7
2 5.0%6
1 2.5%4
3 7.5%1
Arithmetic mean = 8.4.  Median = 10

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