The IMDB business is almost 20 years old (true, just 10 days to go) and although we all love it the site hasn’t changed much or matured beyond its web 1.0 status. Yes it has 57 million visitors every month but it’s not without flaws. Indeed I think there are some interesting lessons to be learned in how to utilise social and crowdsourcing from the little movie recommendations site Criticker.com especially when it comes to movie rankings – read on:
So here’s the problem (and I will bet this has happened to you at some point): You watch a movie, love it only to find IMDB users gave it a crummy 6.5 out of 10 (or vice versa – a crap movie gets a good score on IMDB). The issue of course is that movies are rated by everyone INCLUDING people who also hate the sort of movies you love. In short IMDB does nothing more than merely aggregate the mass opinion of everyone. In the real world we make many choices based on trusted opinions, not just those of the many.
Criticker calls itself a ‘movie recommendation engine’. How does it work? It calculates ratings by analysing movies that YOU like/dislike then it finds OTHER PEOPLE with the same likes/dislikes and then gives you a Probable Score Indicator (PSI) based on the result. In short it ranks movies based on scores from people just like you.
The outcome is that when you search for a movie, your Criticker predicted score is much more likely to be the score you would actually give it. Here’s an example: The film I searched for here is Clockwork Orange. My PSI (probable score) on Cricketer is adjusted to 79/100 (that rating is based on other ratings of people like me). On IMDB it is rated en masse at 8.5/10. The reality here is that Cricketer is much closer than IMDB (I’d probably give it a 75).
Social web 2.0
I’ve been using Criticker for 18 months, I’ve scored about 230 movies and I find the more data I give it, the better it becomes at predicting my scores. Bottom line – this is a truly intelligent and useful crowdsourcing tool and it works. I love it.
BTW: Here’s my profile on Criticker… feel free to hate the movies I <3 😉
Oh PS: If you like it, pop them a donation – this is a startup run by a couple of movie buffs and they need support.