It’s all about the people

I was listening to an interview on NPR around how Rotten Tomatoes is changing the economics around movie going. Then I read a piece on it too.   It has definitely made an impact on how we choose what films to see.  When we look at seeing a film, be it on Netflix or at the movie theater, the first question we ask is, “what did it get on Rotten Tomatoes”?  If the score is below 80, even 85, we hem and haw.  Ridiculous but true.

The same goes for Foursquare.  I might be a restaurant being available for a reservation but it if gets below an 8 then I hem and haw about going there too.

You can read a review of a wine that Robert Parker thinks is incredible but who is to say he has my taste?  I can find out what my friends think on Delectable, people whose taste I trust.

There is something extremely democratic about this approach. If enough people comment and review something that I want to do and it doesn’t score well, then I can use that as a point of data before delving in.  Certainly, when the score is off the charts I don’t need to do as much research.

As for the movies, well there have been a lot of films that have been green-lit over the years that are terrible that cost a lot of money to make so perhaps this will push the industry to think deeper about what type of entertainment they are making.

Comments (Archived):

  1. awaldstein

    Amazon was the pioneer and the won the category with this innovation.Your title made me think of the first blog post I ever pushed live.

    1. Gotham Gal

      so good!

  2. Jlix

    Except… Rotten Tomatoes can be devastating for smaller movies that are really trying to do something ambitious or original or unique. The tentpoles (super hero movies) are immune to RT anyway. its the arthouse fare that can get screwed when a few critics don’t get it.

    1. Gotham Gal


  3. LE

    I might be a restaurant being available for a reservation but it if gets below an 8When traveling to an area that I don’t know anything about what I will often do is simply check and see which onesare sold out on Saturday night (open table) in the coming week (say 7 days or longer in advance). Those are the ones that I figuremust be popular. Or good enough for me. Then I would try to book months in advance. Anything where you can get last minute reservations or is not sold out is typically suspect.I know restaurants probably game this but I am not thinking they do it other than the same day or day before.With movies netflix recently changed and you don’t get the star rankings. I think that’s good since I was relying to much on that and (to your point) not even thinking about watching anything that didn’t have 4 or 4.5 stars. But what I have also noticed is that I am so much more likely to bail on something that doesn’t look good in the first 10 to 20 minutes. Back in DVD/VHS days you just rented two movies and ended up sitting through at least one of them.