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Torrent-Only Movie Denied IMDb Listing

samzenpus posted about 4 years ago | from the no-list-for-you dept.

Movies 207

An anonymous reader writes "A film set to be released for free via BitTorrent has been denied a listing in the Internet Movie Database. The Tunnel is currently in production and despite pleas from the makers, IMDb won't allow it on their site. The creators of this horror movie believe that because they have shunned an official distributor and chosen a BitTorrent model instead, this has put them at a disadvantage with the Amazon-owned site."

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207 comments

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Your definition of movie may vary... (5, Informative)

LostCluster (625375) | about 4 years ago | (#33743496)

IMDB has a very clear rule requiring traditional distribution in order to make their site. Search for your favorite podcast there, even if it comes from CBS-owned CNET or Comcast's G4, and you get comical results of other uses of the words in the title with the exception of only those that had TV runs at some point in the past. TV shows are allowed on the site, but saddled with a "(TV)" mark every time the title is mentioned in the DB.

IMDB's purpose for living currently is a place for Amazon to collect data on video entertainment products that more likely than not will eventually show up as a product Amazon is going to carry. Even if you've got a huge budget, if you're going to go for non-studio Internet downloads, you're not going to end up in Amazon's catalog and offend the big media types that IMDB depends on.

Don't like it? Create your own directory of legal download video projects and lock big content out unless they embrace the download format. Better yet, help people download their picks onto whatever device they want. Oh, wait, that's MediaFly. [mediafly.com]

Re:Your definition of movie may vary... (4, Informative)

kandela (835710) | about 4 years ago | (#33743610)

Yes, and if you read their rules in detail, you will see that acceptance at a film festival with any sort of selection criteria is also sufficient to get a listing in IMDB. So, I don't understand why the makers don't simply submit the film to a festival!?

Re:Your definition of movie may vary... (-1, Troll)

sycodon (149926) | about 4 years ago | (#33743794)

Because they have a point to make and like all stubborn, obstinate children, they will bitch and moan and throw a tantrum about how it's "not fair".

Fucking Buck Up and take it to a film festival.

Re:Your definition of movie may vary... (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33743878)

Fuck that. Let Amazon fuck themselves. We don't need IMDB. List it here and lets me done with it.

Re:Your definition of movie may vary... (1)

stuckinphp (1598797) | about 4 years ago | (#33743940)

From the FTA: “There is no official deal in place to make that happen, as it isn’t controlled by a ‘distributor’ as such. The only conclusion we can reach is that in the absence of a ‘proper’ distributor, they won’t list us.”

I dunno why he gave such a lame geek answer like "the sky is falling you're retarded". Should have just sent him an email with the distribution info:

http://www.google.co.nz/search?&q=filetype%3Atorrent+the+tunnel [google.co.nz]

Re:Your definition of movie may vary... (4, Informative)

TapeCutter (624760) | about 4 years ago | (#33744310)

"like all stubborn, obstinate children, they will bitch and moan and throw a tantrum about how it's "not fair"."

Denton is famous for his short stature but he is anything but an obstinate child. He is highly intelligent, has a razor wit, and IMHO makes some of the best Aussie TV shows on air, he also served as executive producer and script editor for "The Chasers". His company goes by the name of "Zapruder's other films" ( Zapruder being the guy who filmed JFK's assasination ).

He has not moaned about it being unfair, nor has he thrown a tantrum, the media have picked up the story because he is such a well known and popular figure in Aussie TV. Denton of course is getting a bunch of free publicity for his free film but everyone here in Oz already knows the guy is way too smart to knock back free publicity.

Re:Your definition of movie may vary... (1)

The Hatchet (1766306) | about 4 years ago | (#33744570)

you just like to bitch about things and people and hate on torrenting don't you? you sound like you need to get laid.

Re:Your definition of movie may vary... (1)

Custard Horse (1527495) | about 4 years ago | (#33744600)

What is this "torrenting" of which you speak?

I did a search on IMDB and the top result was 'Tormenting Job' which smacks of irony as I am reading this thread.

Re:Your definition of movie may vary... (5, Informative)

BillX (307153) | about 4 years ago | (#33743950)

Because it doesn't exist yet. FTFA: "IMDb told the team that if a movie is not set up with a production company with a history of theatrically released movies, getting it listed at the early stages of development would not be possible."

Re:Your definition of movie may vary... (0)

kandela (835710) | about 4 years ago | (#33743996)

So a company with no history in the industry is annoyed because IMDB won't list their pre-production film. How is their problem different from any other production company without a history of releases behind them?

Re:Your definition of movie may vary... (4, Informative)

jcdick1 (254644) | about 4 years ago | (#33744138)

Actually, The Tunnel has completed principal photography and is in post-production, according to the Open Letter referenced in the article. And they supplied references to major media tracking their work, as IMDB requested.

Re:Your definition of movie may vary... (5, Informative)

TapeCutter (624760) | about 4 years ago | (#33744358)

"So a company with no history in the industry...

Your obviously not an Aussie, saying Denton has no history in the industry is like saying Hitchcock knew nothing about suspense.

Re:Your definition of movie may vary... (1)

AHuxley (892839) | about 4 years ago | (#33744384)

Re no history http://distractedmediaonline.com/distracted-media-team.htm [distracted...online.com]
Seems some real skill on Australian TV and other docos.
I hope they get listed. If not it shows just how closed the site really is.

Re:Your definition of movie may vary... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33744692)

RTFA..

Re:Your definition of movie may vary... (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33743670)

IMDB was much better before Amazon took over. When it was independent it was easy to submit updates and corrections, and while it was not a free-for-all like the Wikimedia (the Wikipedia) back end is, it was very easy to submit updates and watch for the managers (or "editors" in Wikipedia nomanclature) to accept the changes and publish them. That all changed quickly right after Amazon took over. I quit volunteering my time to improve the site, as did many other casual readers who simply wanted a better system for their own reference and entertainment. I still use IMDB to discover older movies and television series which might interest me, but I have no desire to try to submit corrections. The system has become far worse than trying to get updates and corrections submitted to the Open Directory Project (does dmoz even exist any more?).

I still volunteer my time on Wikipedia now and then - correcting grammar, spelling, and factual errors when I see them, remove vandalism, and I keep an eye on articles for a BBS and other projects I am involved in watching for vandalism from a few individuals who insist on grinding their axes. I hope no company ever tries to take over and monopolize Wikipedia the way Amazon did with IMDB.

Re:Your definition of movie may vary... (1)

LostCluster (625375) | about 4 years ago | (#33743716)

Wikimedia gets its money from PBS/NPR-like "pledge drives" where they basically tell the public you're getting something valuable for free, please pay to keep it going.

IMDB gets its money from Amazon, who'd love to keep the pay-for-content model going, and that explains its bias.

Re:Your definition of movie may vary... (-1, Troll)

Cylix (55374) | about 4 years ago | (#33744020)

The article is actually biased and misleading.

IMDB denied a pre-production listing for a low budget horror film... damn... those are only a dime a dozen.

How about when they do release and then get denied we talk about it then?

I'm quite certain IMDB receives hundreds of similar requests and I am in no lesser of a position having not been aware of each of them. The truth is I don't care and I'm not going to watch their cheap horror flick no matter how much gimmick they throw into it. It's also not the first time someone has released a bad movie via download only.

Something else that bothers me and I don't know the answer (but should have asked). I've had lots of startup director friends over the years because I was heavily involved in broadcast engineering in the past. Every damn one of those guys wanted to make a low budget horror film and of course eventually each of them did. They were all awful and the guys who made the garbage were getting laid left and right. I suppose it's more of an observation then a question because I don't want to know why.

Re:Your definition of movie may vary... (2, Insightful)

TapeCutter (624760) | about 4 years ago | (#33744472)

Like many of the other posts you have erroneously jumped to the conclusion that Denton [wikipedia.org] is an unknown startup doing things on the cheap. As well as at least a half dozen very popular Aussie TV shows, this is the same guy who brought Chaser's [youtube.com] onto Aussie TV.

BTW: His wife is also a well know Aussie TV personality and is drop dead gorgeous.

Re:Your definition of movie may vary... (5, Informative)

wagnerrp (1305589) | about 4 years ago | (#33744072)

That all changed quickly right after Amazon took over. I quit volunteering my time to improve the site, as did many other casual readers who simply wanted a better system for their own reference and entertainment. I still use IMDB to discover older movies and television series which might interest me, but I have no desire to try to submit corrections.

You may want to consider TheMovieDb.org [themoviedb.org] and TheTVDB.com [thetvdb.com] . They started up in response to IMDb restricting their content and images, and exist to provide community-sourced metadata and artwork for use in HTPCs.

Re:Your definition of movie may vary... (3, Insightful)

iamhassi (659463) | about 4 years ago | (#33743704)

"Don't like it? Create your own directory of legal download video projects and lock big content out unless they embrace the download format."

I was thinking the same thing. I'm not impressed with the direction IMDB has been going in recent years, more and more paywalls, I think it's about time someone create an alternative to IMDB and I think it's rather scary that one website has wielded so much power over a movie database for as long as IMDB has.

Like Field of Dreams said "If you build it they will come". Judging by the torrent movies I've seen there's quite a few that would love a site where they might get better exposure than buried under Avatar and Iron Man

Re:Your definition of movie may vary... (3, Interesting)

rockNme2349 (1414329) | about 4 years ago | (#33743838)

You should check out http://www.themoviedb.org/ [themoviedb.org]

XBMC can download information directly from their database, which is how I was introduced to it. I believe this is what you are looking for.

Re: (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33744008)

A legal snapshot of IMDB was contributed to AmiNet in 2004: http://aminet.net/misc/imdb [aminet.net]

Re:Your definition of movie may vary... (1)

dave420 (699308) | about 4 years ago | (#33744084)

Exactly. If they accept this film, they'd have to deal with people asking for their YouTube videos to be listed, too.

Re:Your definition of movie may vary... (5, Informative)

Kaedrin (709478) | about 4 years ago | (#33744186)

So IMDB has a clear tradition and quite likely violated it for...

Star Wreck: In the Pirkinning
The Guild
The Legend of Neil
Dr. Horrible's Sing Along Blog

Frankly, if any web series also deserves to violate this rule, it's Doraleous and Associates. Awesome web based show that very easily deserves to be in IMDB, yet currently is not. Not unlike those other awesome shows which also avoided standard publishing paths. I know nothing about The Tunnel, but I think IMDB damn well should have a vetting process for things worth mentioning because they appear to already have one in spirit if not in their own law.

Anyway, these did not originate or target standard distribution channels, yet they got into the IMDB database. Was the only reason those shows got on IMDB is because some of the people working on or for them are well known, and IMDB actually has a flexible policy of supporting those who they like or are well known when clear traditions are broken? I don't think Star Wreck even had known actors, and yet it's original distribution channel was, *gasp*, torrent.

So yes, maybe the folks at The Tunnel kind of have a valid complaint, even if their show is as bad as parts of Star Wreck. Hell, it can't possibly be as bad as Neverending Story 3, which is listed on IMDB and most certainly should be forgotten by all who exist.

Re:Your definition of movie may vary... (1)

Kaedrin (709478) | about 4 years ago | (#33744200)

I forgot Troops! The Star Wars / Cops parody! This is also on IMDB and was web only.

Re:Your definition of movie may vary... (1)

Sockatume (732728) | about 4 years ago | (#33744700)

Why should IMDB carry podcasts? They don't carry radio shows at all.

OTOH (4, Insightful)

Citizen of Earth (569446) | about 4 years ago | (#33743516)

On the plus side, they'll now get way more publicity than if the IMDB guys weren't dicks. Perhaps they'll even make the popular news.

Re:OTOH (3, Insightful)

LostCluster (625375) | about 4 years ago | (#33743530)

Sorry, popular news is controlled by the same media interests that would rather Internet distribution that goes around them didn't exist.

Re:OTOH (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33743558)

Yes, IMDb is certainly a paragon of old media sensibility.

Re:OTOH (4, Informative)

MishgoDog (909105) | about 4 years ago | (#33744518)

Sorry Mr Cynical, read about this this morning (Australia time) on the front page of a 'popular news' site...
The Age [theage.com.au]
But please don't let me get in the way of a good anti-establishment rant...

Re:OTOH (1)

Dodgy G33za (1669772) | about 4 years ago | (#33743834)

And from my point of view IMDB get negative news. I hadn't noticed that it was now owned by Amazon (I have been using it for ages). I have deleted my quick link to it as a result of the article. For me Amazon is up there with Apple as people not to do business with.

Re:OTOH (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33744164)

Thank you for your moral stand on this issue that absolutely nobody cares about and will be completely forgotten by tomorrow morning. I'm sure at least 3 internet people will follow your courageous lead to spend five seconds altering their "quick links" to exclude IMDB.

Re:OTOH (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33743906)

Getting your no-name movie listed as in-production on IMDB along side thousands of others with no real hope (approximate promotional value: $0)

-or-

Milking a buttload of free press out of the knee jerk anti-IP tech crowd by pretending to be offended over being kept down by "the man" (approximate promotional value: four to five figures)

Gosh, I wonder if they had thought of that already?!? Torrentfreak gullible? No wai brah.

Speaking of gullible - selling each frame for $1 = 1x24x60x90 = $129,600 - Pretty spendy for a film that's rejecting the capitalist system. I hope they're on kickstarter, that seems to be the best place these days for the blurry line between idealistic venture and confidence game. Maybe IMDB knows something we don't.

I guess that means IMDB has to remove... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33743532)

Global Frequency [imdb.com] , anyone?

Re:I guess that means IMDB has to remove... (1)

LostCluster (625375) | about 4 years ago | (#33743546)

Nope... the pilot episode aired on Sci-Fi in June of 2005, therefore qualifying it as a failed TV production.

Re:I guess that means IMDB has to remove... (1)

daveime (1253762) | about 4 years ago | (#33743614)

Can you beat Frustration Trivia?

No because like everything else it wants registration to play, and I'm tired of getting spammed.

(Creating a throwaway Hotmail or GMail account is NOT a solution, as it merely diverts the spam for someone else to deal with).

Re:I guess that means IMDB has to remove... (1)

LostCluster (625375) | about 4 years ago | (#33743638)

I've thought of allowing linking of Twitter/AIM/Facebook/Myspace/MSN/Google accounts as a alternative to registering with me directly... but can't figure out which one to do first.

Just support OpenID (1)

jonwil (467024) | about 4 years ago | (#33743680)

If people can login via OpenID, they can use their google account or their yahoo account or other accounts.

Re:Just support OpenID (1)

LostCluster (625375) | about 4 years ago | (#33743732)

I honestly would love for people to be able to use their Slashdot accounts on my site.

Re:I guess that means IMDB has to remove... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33743720)

Can you beat Frustration Trivia?

No ... it merely diverts the spam for someone else to deal with).

er wait, who is dealing with my spam only email address and all the spam it gets? Also i'd like to take this opportunity to thank said person, i've been using the same spam mail address for over 9 years now, and the amount of rubbish it gets is probably enough to make their penis so erect it goes and buys some wow gold and uses it to assist wealthy nigerians transfer their vast sums of naira.

Re:I guess that means IMDB has to remove... (1)

daveime (1253762) | about 4 years ago | (#33743884)

You seem to be missing the point.

All this spam clogs up the pipes. It doesn't matter is it get's filtered by your personal e-mail client, or by Yahoo or GMails spam filtering software. The point is, it still has to travel multiple hops from source to destination, slowing down multiple servers and sucking bandwidth, just to tell you "you successfully registered and can now play".

You could do all that ON THE WEBPAGE, with no email addresses involved. Chose a username, choose a password, YOU'RE IN. Finished.

For 99% of registrations, there is NO need to use email addresses (unless they want to send you spam now or in the future). And for the 99% of registrations that DO require you use an email address, I'll bet it's a throwaway one, making the whole thing an exercise in futility.

I'm putting my foot down, FWIW.

Stupid (4, Interesting)

adenied (120700) | about 4 years ago | (#33743554)

I love IMDB for keeping track of movies I've seen but they have some really annoying policies around what gets included. How is this any different than the 60 or Funny Or Die movies in IMDB right now? http://www.imdb.com/company/co0215655/ [imdb.com] I don't think any of those have gotten anything other than web streaming distribution.

A while back I thought I'd add a few obscure short Russian films that are included on a DVD set I have. Mostly fascinating propaganda from the 1950s or so. About half of the films are in IMDB. I spent a good hour or so using their ancient and difficult to use system entering all of the data that I could find which was relatively substantial. Go figure, they actually had a lot of production information in the credits for the main one I wanted to submit. So I put all the data in, got the e-mail that said OK we'll take a look! Waited. Waited. Got another automated e-mail saying well you don't have enough information. Please add more. So I tried to clean things up a bit. Waited.. Waited.. finally got an e-mail saying Well, sorry, none of our staff have looked at this yet, and don't expect them to. Resubmit with more information if you want us to maybe consider it. !!!

What do they want?? There's tons of movies in there that don't even have things like director and producer credits much less acting credits. After that I just don't see the point in trying to help.

I feel bad for these guys with this torrent movie. Can't imagine they'll get very far on their own with them.

Re:Stupid (4, Informative)

LostCluster (625375) | about 4 years ago | (#33743566)

FunnyOrDie shorts often appear in film festivals where they are shown in theaters to therefore qualify them as a theatrical short and therefore qualified for IMDB mention. Notice they only get about 100 entries despite the thousands on the site.

Re:Stupid (3, Informative)

adenied (120700) | about 4 years ago | (#33743812)

Huh, if that's true I was unaware of it and stand corrected. (I know, a rare situation on Slashdot.)

Re:Stupid (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33744088)

If I had Mod points, you'd be rewarded for being a mature person that reacted rationally when confronted with conflicting information. :') So inspiring!

Re:Stupid (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33743850)

well have they been to thousands of film festivals or about 100? oh, right.

Re:Stupid (1)

Cronkodile (1834440) | about 4 years ago | (#33744190)

Also, I believe HBO now owns Funny or Die, and airs the videos in a late night show called "Funny or Die presents..." Did some work on an ep a few months ago and this is what the deal memo led me to believe. Ironically, I don't actually get HBO, so I can't tell you for sure. http://www.hbo.com/funny-or-die-presents [hbo.com]

And I've never had an issue submitting things to IMDb. Nearly every update I've submitted is up within 24 hours. Most of the time I provide a link with proof/citation of the information I'm submitting, which may be the "additional information" they were looking for? Who knows.

those have been released (1)

YesIAmAScript (886271) | about 4 years ago | (#33744264)

This hasn't.

http://www.imdb.com/help/show_leaf?titleeligibility [imdb.com]

Once a movie is released, it's pretty easy it on from the "has been downloaded a large number of times from a site" criteria. This is surely how the funnyordie stuff got up there.

But the movie in question hasn't been released yet. So it can't meet those criteria. So it must wait a little bit longer.

Ying/Yang (2, Funny)

DirtyCanuck (1529753) | about 4 years ago | (#33743556)

I guess the real argument is what is considered a Production. Surely if the movie is of the quality as many B titles the means of distribution are irrelevant.

That said, the flip side is a IMDB that is littered with amazing Productions such as "Football to the Groin" and "Cat Gets Tasered, In Bathtub"

I guess for some of us the real IMDB will be reduced to .NFO files and their summary. That'll learn em' :O

Re:Ying/Yang (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33743630)

Will be?

More like has been for several years now.

Re:Ying/Yang (1)

loki_tiwaz (982852) | about 4 years ago | (#33743976)

the more money the mafiaa makes me pay for watching their rubbish the less i want to pay. anyone remember an article from yesterday pointing out that the encoding and decoding of a standard definition raw video stream on hdmi requires at least a quad core 2ghz x86 class cpu? ok maybe it's not well optimised code yet but please explain to me the logic of encrypting a point to point connection that is at most 6 metres long? without talking about fables about how all the people who leech a movie from torrents had the money to spend on movies in the first place (i for one can barely afford rent and food and infrequent transport and my internet spend is only about the same as 2 movies a month if i buy popcorn). where do they think i'm gonna extract that extra money from? sell my blood or something? i don't have haemochromatosis, and the blood bank doesn't want my blood anyway because i used needles years ago even though i have been tested clear of blood borne diseases the whole time since.

anyway, wikipedia does better movie entries than the imdb. for that matter filmographies too. and if your interest is music, discogs is the best place to go and wouldn't you know it, it's user content driven... i'm boycotting imdb from now on, not that i'd ever click on their stupid ads. i also don't go to cinemas much anymore... not that there's much worth really watching anyway... but there's an IMAX sized theatre not far from me right in the middle of a major student district that will let you watch most of the mainstream releases on an imax-sized screen for aud$6.50 full adult ticket price... now and then i'd be happy to go there but the rest of the city has your regular 100sq/m theatres with 5 metre wide screens and $12 ticket prices... who are these twits getting their data from?

can anyone else spot the irony about their nonsense about losing money to piracy when they aren't obeying the laws of economics they profess are godsent about price elasticity? goodbye imdb, and good riddance... you don't have a monopoly on publicly available information.

Re:Ying/Yang (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33744194)

this post is actually spraying spittle all over the inside of my monitor screen. please mod down.

Re:Ying/Yang (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33744098)

It's yin yang dumbfuck.

Musicbrainz has a Similar Problem (1)

adamgolding (871654) | about 4 years ago | (#33743560)

Last I checked, Musicbrainz wouldn't allow this sort of thing either. Mind you, specifically I was asking about bittorrent 'compiliations' of pre-existing material where, arguably, the set and ordering chosen results in a new work. I'm not sure if they would allow a torrent-only album under 'other' under the current practices:

            http://wiki.musicbrainz.org/ReleaseType [musicbrainz.org] [musicbrainz.org]

            But at least Musicbrainz is rather 'open' and allows dissent among the community on such topics--this leads to the obvious question, then: why isn't there a centralized 'open' metadata database like this for *all* forms of media: music, scores, movies, television, books, magazines, journal articles, encyclopedias, video games,etc...

The Guild (1)

nastro (32421) | about 4 years ago | (#33743564)

Hasn't stopped them from listing The Guild. I'm sure there's others. Screw you, Amazon.

Re:The Guild (2, Informative)

LostCluster (625375) | about 4 years ago | (#33743624)

The Guild is available at Amazon as DVDs.

Mainly-online projects that have a small traditional distribution deal qualify for IMDB mention... those who don't do not.

No shit (2, Funny)

imthesponge (621107) | about 4 years ago | (#33743568)

If it doesn't come out in theaters, it's a home movie, not a real motion picture.

Re:No shit (2, Informative)

LostCluster (625375) | about 4 years ago | (#33743592)

Yep. Even HBO stages small theater runs for their serious productions to qualify them for Oscar contention. Otherwise, all they could get would be Emmy awards.

Re:No shit (1)

Chuq (8564) | about 4 years ago | (#33743718)

.. but IMDb includes straight to video, straight to television, TV shows, and computer games in their database without a problem.

Re:No shit (2, Insightful)

LostCluster (625375) | about 4 years ago | (#33743752)

All of which classes of products Amazon can sell.

Theaters vs. Everything else (1)

kainosnous (1753770) | about 4 years ago | (#33743754)

Defining what is a "real motion picture" by whether or not a handful of companies decide to play it is not the best option. I fully support capitalism, but for it to work, we must be able to move beyond reasoning that the level at which something is marketed is the definition of it's quality.

Media companies practically have an oligarchy, and people have been eating it up. However, as they pump out more trash, the people seek more substance. When comapanies want control, users want usability. In a time when economies are low and tech is high, I feel that people will reach more and more for technology and a community module for entertainment.

Currently, I don't go to theaters, so what comes out in them means little to me. I also don't spend much time in the video rental stores for the same reason: there's nothing there that interests me these days. I find that I have better luck finding good content on the internet. I'm probably a minority now, but I see that sentiment growing.

Re:Theaters vs. Everything else (1)

Dodgy G33za (1669772) | about 4 years ago | (#33743844)

You may be a minority, but I am betting you are a growing one. 99% of Hollywood content isn't even worth a free download.

The definition of Irony (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33743938)

If it doesn't come out in theaters, it's a home movie, not a real motion picture.

Some of what has hit the theaters have been little more than home movies.

Entertainment industries in two parallel universes (4, Funny)

mykos (1627575) | about 4 years ago | (#33743572)

In one universe, digital distribution is an unholy force that costs the world eight billion jobs every year and funds terrorism.

In the other universe, digital distribution doesn't exist at all and is no more potent a force than than a barely perceptible breeze.

IMDB is pretty useless anymore, anyway. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33743580)

I look up movies on wikipedia, anyhow.

Re:IMDB is pretty useless anymore, anyway. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33743892)

Does that get you real far, anywho?

Re:IMDB is pretty useless anymore, anyway. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33744324)

Six slashdottin' antelopes gave this thread their "hoof of approval"

Amazon? (4, Insightful)

Macrat (638047) | about 4 years ago | (#33743604)

this has put them at a disadvantage with the Amazon-owned site.

That explains why the site has been getting so "design" heavy it is almost unusable. It can only be viewed with flash and javascript blocking.

Re:Amazon? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33744122)

They bought it in 1998...

Other movies on there (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33743618)

Did "The Hunt for Gollum" and "Born of Hope" make it to the big theatres? They are on IMDB.

Excuse me? (1)

Seraphim_72 (622457) | about 4 years ago | (#33743690)

Are you really purposely introducing flaws in your own database? Is it not a movie? Does it not have actors, grips and sundry?

Draw the line (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33743706)

They have to draw the line somewhere. The bittorrent angle is a red herring. If they don't establish some meaningful threshold, then they have a pretty big universe of material to apply resources to, considering that we've seen quite a revolutionary amount of video works of independent origin in the past few years.

These guys are either... (4, Insightful)

bm_luethke (253362) | about 4 years ago | (#33743712)

...idiots or trying to drum up publicity (my bet is the second).

Really - IMDB can't do what they want them to and remain a reliable source of movie information. IMDB clearly told them what was needed: be at a late enough period of production or at release so they can tell it isn't simply a hobby or publicity stunt or have a major publisher sign off. So they resubmitted without *any* of that happening and *gasp* got rejected each time! I mean, there is only one explanation right - they are protecting Amazon.com business of selling movies!!!!!! BitTorrent is a *distribution method*, not a distributor. They are following their rules for self published movies and those are in place for a reason. It's like complaining that a CentOS repository will not take your half baked project like sourceforge would - after all you have other half baked projects that made it! It's not some grand conspiracy, they list professionally made published movies and some publishers are reliable enough that they allow them to "pre-publish" information. Any other database that is looking for a similar reputation (again, take a community accepted CentOS repository) and they have to do the same thing. Nothing wrong with either way and there is place for both, but do not expect one striving for the higher reputation to take anything.

Further this is what you pay publishers to do and is the tradeoff one pays for saving that money. To use another computer analogy no reason you can't self publish your own x.509 certificate, set up a secure server, and rely totally on that. Just do not complain when people do not trust it like they would a certificate signed by Verisign - you are not really paying for the distribution, you are paying for the trust and connections that the publisher (or CA) has. Lots of examples there too - have your home for sale by owner? You aren't going to get the ability to advertise like a real-estate agent would. Service your own equipment? The place you purchased your items from aren't going to refund your money because you hit something with a hammer you were not supposed too. Yea, they have a few other movies with them but I bet they were not added unless: the movie was released, at the end of production, or had a publisher backing it. Even then one has to note the number of movies that are "in production" and never make it, by that observation the standards are already low.

IMDB is *not* looking to be a repository for information on any and all movies out there (they aren't looking to be a sourceforge of movies, they are looking to be a community wide accepted CentOS repository). Yea, some "real" movies may very well end up with much worse production values than this one - but they aren't going to take your word for it. If they release a quality movie and IMDB refuses *then* lets blast them, until then these guys are only marginally better then me submitting my upcoming movie to IMDB.

indie films must be released before listed (5, Informative)

YesIAmAScript (886271) | about 4 years ago | (#33743756)

IMDB requires indie films be released before they are listed.

http://www.imdb.com/help/show_leaf?titleeligibility [imdb.com]

This movie isn't out yet. He can submit the movie for inclusion once it comes out.

Is there no website that won't fall for a fake outrage story like this one? Is it really this easy to manipulate "new media"?

Re:indie films must be released before listed (1)

smbarbour (893880) | about 4 years ago | (#33743984)

And one of the criteria for General Public Interest is "has become famous for some reason and is widely talked about/referenced in non local media or the 'film community' or is now of general historic interest for some reason." By virtue of it being discussed on Slashdot, it now meets that requirement.

(And will probably also meet the "has been downloaded in 'large' numbers from some website(s)" criteria as well, due to Slashdot.)

I don't see why it shouldn't be included since even porn is allowed in the database: Dirty Bob's Xcellent Adventures 35 [imdb.com] (Yes, that is actually the title)

Granted, it has someone in it that has done regular movies as well, they still have it in the database (along with many other of his movies)

Re:indie films must be released before listed (1)

Garble Snarky (715674) | about 4 years ago | (#33744342)

So the movie is now notable due to its lack of notability?

Re:indie films must be released before listed (1)

DerekLyons (302214) | about 4 years ago | (#33744104)

Is there no website that won't fall for a fake outrage story like this one? Is it really this easy to manipulate "new media"?

Is that a rhetorical question or are you new to Slashdot?

Frankly, IMDB needs to be replaced (2, Insightful)

l0ungeb0y (442022) | about 4 years ago | (#33743782)

No public API, only some ambiguous statement saying they *might* be willing to license you you for at least $10,000, maybe, if they are feeling ok about it that is.
There needs to be an open web platform that does what IMDB does, but allows it's information to be used freely. While I can understand there needs to be a standard as to what get's in, not including something solely because it's internet distribution only shows that though they exist on the net, they don't really care for it. We deserve better.

themoviedb.org not enough for ya? (1)

itslifejimbutnotaswe (1173791) | about 4 years ago | (#33744204)

Open data, open API. What more do you want?

Re:Frankly, IMDB needs to be replaced (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33744464)

http://www.themoviedb.org/

Too late for a film at 11 joke again... (1)

LostCluster (625375) | about 4 years ago | (#33743784)

Torrent-distributed movie that vows never to be sold in stores denied listing at online retail giant's movie database. We've got a team working on the story overnight and will have complete details on tomorrow's Wicked Early News, we start now a half hour earlier than before normal people wake up.

Seems like an opportunity to me (1)

rcpitt (711863) | about 4 years ago | (#33743804)

IMDB is ripe for being made redundant, or at least there is room for someone else to fill in where they've left off.

Re:Seems like an opportunity to me (1)

Cylix (55374) | about 4 years ago | (#33744078)

There are competing movie databases which feature user contributed content.

In fact mythtv supports an alternate movie and poster database out of the box.

I actually added the entire content for one movie simply because it was not listed on IMDB and there was nothing I could do to change this. (I Sell The Dead). It was a horror comedy flick and while not my usual genre I was pleased enough. At the time there was no IMDB listing and this was surprising because it had Dominic Monaghan as the lead star. (Charlie from Lost). Now hopefully they won't pull a gracenote with all of that user contributed content.

Re:Seems like an opportunity to me (1)

NoMaster (142776) | about 4 years ago | (#33744672)

"Now hopefully they won't pull a gracenote with all of that user contributed content."

Like IMDB did? I've been around the 'net long enough to remember when it was the user-contributed 'rec.arts.movies movie database', a collection of text files and shell scripts, before it even moved to the web as the 'Cardiff University Movie Database'. What happened after that was like a beginners HOWTO for the CDDB guys.

But apart from that, anyone who relies on IMDB for accurate info has rocks in their head. Anything pre early-90's that's not a Hollywood production or an international classic is almost guaranteed to have multiple errors.

Mmmm ... (1)

tqk (413719) | about 4 years ago | (#33743814)

Pre-release PR. Mmmm ...

but... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33743818)

IMDB is full of films that have no distributor at all...

there's a lot of fly-by-night, never-see-the-light-of-day films (some of which i've got a credit on IMDB for working on).

how is this different? if an independent film is in production it quite often will not have a distributor, and i can name a ton of movies that still had IMDB listings while looking for distribution.

i don't get this at all. i think there's more to it than TFA is letting on.

it would set a bad precedent (1)

OrangeTide (124937) | about 4 years ago | (#33743852)

If anyone who decides to torrent a home movie could add to IMDB the site would, in my opinion, become less useful. If I want to wade through cruft I'll search with google.

Re:it would set a bad precedent (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33744116)

what about screeners? just send one to IMDB. a DVD screener isn't beyond most productions' budgets.

IMDB refute the claims (1)

z0idberg (888892) | about 4 years ago | (#33743972)

According to this article http://www.smh.com.au/entertainment/movies/torrent-of-data-not-enough-to-get-aussie-movie-on-imdb-20100930-15yk6.html [smh.com.au]

IMDb's head of public relations and marketing said the company would "review this specific case", but brushed off the producers' claims of bias.

"To the contrary, we already list many titles that were initially or solely distributed online and/or via BitTorrent," Emily Glassman wrote in an email from Seattle, where the company is based.

"As a pioneering internet company - we are celebrating our 20th anniversary on 17 October! - we are fully aware of and totally embrace digital distribution."

Re:IMDB refute the claims (1)

TheyreNotTheir (1911970) | about 4 years ago | (#33744490)

WOW. So IMDB's PR department is the first to answer? What about a qualified person in charge of listings.. such as oh say,the listings reviewer or CEO? They still havent answered the specific questions put forward explicitly in the open letter by the producers.

What I don't get.... (1)

CTU (1844100) | about 4 years ago | (#33744004)

I know of 2 fan made ghostbuster files that are not for sell (download only that are listed on IMDB

Freddy VS Ghostbusters (only 35 min so prob should not be counted as a movie :P) http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0439576/ [imdb.com]
and
Return of the Ghostbusters http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1230164/ [imdb.com]

if they got listed then, I don't see why this movie can't be

What exactly IS the fair standard? (1)

Trerro (711448) | about 4 years ago | (#33744034)

Imagine if this exact same article were written, but instead of "torrent-only", it said "Youtube-only". Are there Youtube-only full-length movies of good quality that probably should be listed in major movie DB sites? Yes. For every one of those, however, there's thousands upon thousands that really shouldn't. A database of everything ever filmed with a camera would be utterly useless, because all of your searches would return mountains of crap you don't care about.

The question then is, "what standardized set of rules gets as many real movies as possible, while including as few videos as possible that really aren't production-quality, full-length movies?" IMDBs answer is "must have been shown in a theater, either the normal kind or the film festival kind". This is obviously a flawed model, since as others have pointed out already, there's 5 minute Funny or Die shorts in there, and there's many full-length movies of at least B movie quality that aren't.

Many are saying someone should make a better site than IMDB, and it's not a bad idea. If you're thinking of actually doing it though, you need to answer that question in a way that works. I personally can't think of a standard, but there likely IS a much better one than what IMDB uses. The challenge of course, more so than actually making a better site, is to come up with that standard.

Amazon (2)

spyder-implee (864295) | about 4 years ago | (#33744054)

I always wondered why imdb had such a gawd awful design. I guess that explains it.

The producers of the movie don't have a legit case (2, Interesting)

DavidinAla (639952) | about 4 years ago | (#33744206)

I have a short film that's listed on IMDb and I have a personal listing there because of having written/directed it, so I've dealt with IMDb. I can tell you that it's not easy to get on their. They don't communicate with people very well. And their rating system is frequently "gamed" by people to hurt films. So I'm not crazy about them and can sympathize that they're not easy to deal with. However, it's VERY clear that there are fairly simple criteria by which IMDb determines what is a legit film. You can distribution or you can get your film into legit festivals. If you choose to exist outside of that system, IMDb has no reason to believe you're a real filmmaker. They don't pass artistic judgement. They simply say that you have to meet certain criteria to be listed. If they didn't do that, how in the world would they determine what to list? As someone who's been around the indie film world for awhile now, I can tell you that there are THOUSANDS of wannabes who are trying to get listed in order to get some credibility. So I believe the producers of this film are whiners who need to simply shut up. Of course, they might very well KNOW that they have zero chance of getting listed on IMDb, so getting geeks riled up about something on torrent not getting respect might be their real PR strategy. Either way, they seem like amateurs at best.

Two bittorrent features listed on IMDb. (1)

bryll (854882) | about 4 years ago | (#33744212)

We have released two indie feature films under Creative Commons licenses through Mininova using BitTorrent, and both have been listed on the IMDb. In both cases we had a very limited screening - you just rent somewhere large enough and do your own screening, that's perfectly valid. In both cases, that was enough for our flicks to get listed. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1265599/ [imdb.com] http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1334226/ [imdb.com]

IMDB (4, Interesting)

Wescotte (732385) | about 4 years ago | (#33744230)

We submitted our (The Amateur Monster Movie http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1717690/ [imdb.com] ) zero budget film to be added IMDB a few times in the past while still doing principal photography. They denied it until we released our trailer and started getting more press coverage. We don't have any distribution deal (yet) or submitted it to any festivals.

I think if they just released a trailer and got more press (which Slashdot should fix) they will be added. I think it's a matter of them simply trying to avoid adding films that most likely will never be seen by anybody but the people involved in creating them.


Here is a link to our trailer in case your curious.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3aZquMQhAmo [youtube.com]

IMDb is corrupt. Thank-you Amazon. (3, Informative)

Fantastic Lad (198284) | about 4 years ago | (#33744458)

Amazon is selling the IMDb as a marketing tool to Hollywood.

How?

Astro-turfing in the reviews section of the IMDb is not just allowed, (and I suspect, sold as a service to big film releases), but when you write a review pointing this out, that criticism vanishes. Or rather, it doesn't vanish, but only appears present to the IP address it came from while remaining invisible to the rest of the world.

Give it a try!

Next time a big block buster release comes out, head over to the IMDb in the first couple of days of release and after wading through the swamp of 10 star rave reviews, down to the bottom where the balanced reviews by real people are buried, and write your own pointing out that Amazon is selling favorable reviews to Hollywood marketing firms and that the movie in question probably sucks just badly enough to require the kind of manipulative push an astro-turfing tactic offers.

Then watch your review mysteriously vanish.

Go on! It's frustrating good times!

-FL

Re:IMDb is corrupt. Thank-you Amazon. (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33744684)

write your own pointing out that Amazon is selling favorable reviews to Hollywood marketing firms and that the movie in question probably sucks just badly enough to require the kind of manipulative push an astro-turfing tactic offers.

Then watch your review mysteriously vanish.

You know, given that reviews are supposed to be reviews of the MOVIE in question and not rants about amazon's business tactics (even if they're rants that are factually accurate), I don't think this is actually a bad thing.

imdb doesn't give free advertising to newbies? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33744486)

Why should they?

It's not an "non-traditional" conspiracy. "Sita Sings the Blues" is listed. But then, that movie actually exists (and it's free).

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1172203/

BS... (1)

SuperDre (982372) | about 4 years ago | (#33744598)

It can't be the reason as I know for a fact there are a few 'homemade'-movies which have imdb listings like cardboardman (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1730680/) and it has only got a youtube publication... But maybe the problem is, they still haven't released it.. And until they release it, it just doesn't exist to them.. Try again when it's actually finished (and ofcourse I don't blame them for that, otherwise imdb would be full of crap that is never finished.. And yes there are exceptions ofcourse when it comes to high profile production companies, but that's because they have a track record of actually producing the movies...

So I guess the makers of this movie should stop bitching and finish the movie first.. so many 'homemade' movies have started but never finished.. finish and release it and then submit it to imdb, then you'll certainly will get an entry...

this whole story seems more like a cry for attention...
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