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back to article Verizon sends text messages to the big screen

Verizon will be asking moviegoers about their music preferences and posting their responses up on the cinema screen as part of a new pre-movie advertisement. The promotion starts mid-June, and will precede 3,500 film showings around the US. Punters will be asked questions about the kind of music they like, and invited to respond …

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Rate my movie

I would rather see this technology to provide for "instant" movie ratings, that is, that I can rate the movie as soon as it's finished. Then cinemas could send shite movies to uglier timeslots and focus on the really good ones.

That way, it might be easier to send stinking turds to the bottom... but then again, maybe not.

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Brilliant

the next logical step:

The piped music will respond to the demand of the audience.

Yippee can't wait to listen to some Emo or Bangin hardcore techno crap because the cinema is jammed full of 14 year old chavs.

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Stop

I wish they'd invent something

which locates active mobile phones in the cinema and fries them with an EM pulse if they're still on when the main feature starts.

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Of course

They'll still charge you 10¢ per message.

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Rate My Girlfriend

I think this would be much more effective, and exciting, if they showed girlfriends of people in the crowd (in various stages of undress of course) and let the audience vote on them.

Otherwise, since all advertisements suck, I'll just lie to the "device" and hopefully enough other people will too. Then we'll have Judy Garland soundtracks set to Bee Gees videos before the movies instead of advertisements for inane products. It'll be great.

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Happy

Heh, that's my website. :)

Heh... "Digital Distribution". That's my website (really).

www.digitaldistribution.com

:)

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Alert

I already have a pretty good idea about my fellow patrons' music taste

due to the little shits insisting that everybody else enjoy the tinny sound of mp3s played through their phones' speakers

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Unhappy

Do I look like I care?

If I gave a flying squirrel's toenails what other people in the cinema thought I wouldn't ask them to shut up.

And thats the nearest I could get to a grumpy bastard icon.

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Why respond?

Why tell the marketroids anything? If I pay to go to the cinema I pay them to entertain me, I don't pay to advise them on their fucking marketing strategy.

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Rate the movie?

The only rating a theater needs is the money.

I'd throw candy at the screens when the ads are too long but the candy costs as much as the tardy movie. It's easier to watch it at home.

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Pay per view advertising

If a cinema wants to throw ads in my face when I go to see a film then the entrance fee should be nothing, zero, zilch. I pay to watch a movie not a series of advertisements. I always enter the cinema 20-30 minutes AFTER the scheduled time of the film. fsck 'em all the greedy bstrds.

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So trailers AND surveys?

All before the movie starts? Do they want to drive people away from cinemas?

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jim

P2P

Will this affect my camera which I use to record movies and then publish on P2P?

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re:I wish they'd invent something

No.. much better if they would put a message up on the screen listing the retards that still have their phone turned on!

You, yes, you... 3456838 Turn your phone off!!

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I don't miss it

I stopped going to theater years ago, primarily because there is nothing but shit out there now (I stopped watching television for the same reason). My secondary reason for refusing to visit the movie theater is that if I pay $10-20 for a ticket, then another $10 on food (double that if on a date), I don't want to sit through advertisements before the movie starts. It was bad enough when they showed two trailers for movies I had no interest in. Then they extended it to 10 minutes' worth of trailers. Then they started showing product advertisements, and that was the last straw.

On another note, from everyone I know, it seems to be a universal thought that people using their cell phones in the theater are extremely annoying (more so when they're talking, but even the light emitted when texting is annoying). So why are these theaters now encouraging people to use their phones? What's next -- encouraging people to bring in babies to the midnight shows (which happens/happened all to often in my area)? If you ask me, every theater should get signal jammers so the people paying their hard-earned money to be entertained for a few hours are actually entertained and not annoyed.

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but

But I like the "traditional lurid slides of the nearby curry house"!!!

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Hahahahaha

They really are getting desperate now, aren't they.

I nearly went back to a cinema recently. The local Odeon was showing the Monaco GP live on the big screen - great, I thought! Possibly worth the cost of a cinema ticket!

Then I saw how much tickets were - £15. Sod that, I'll put it towards a big LCD screen of my own.

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I just got back from the cinema

The local cinema is the first Digital only cinema in europe. Picture quality is fantastic, the sound is awesome and I can imagine there's a lot more they could do with it... the problem is. Nobody uses the damn thing! I just watched indiana jones.... (Don't even get me started on that) and there were about 18 people there!

I dont mind adverts, I just turn up late. Adverts are in games, on TV etc... I agree cinemas are getting a little more expensive, but when its good quality I dont mind paying. I can recommend Vue cinemas to everyone, The seats are huge, plenty of room its all clean its great...

Theres the EVO screen which has been bags, sofas with ice boxes and huge leather chairs which are just awesome... If all cinemas were like this im sure they would win back some of the crowds.

I'm afraid advertising is only going to get worse as less and less people go as the cinemas will need to recoup their losses.

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I really hoped

That they were planning to embarrass those who text, but alas not.

I can see it now: I receiver listens to all mobile communications, selects the text messages and puts the message and last few digits of the number on the big screen.

If the receiver could pinpoint location, then why not put up the seat number as well? Then everyone can start throwing food at them for a change.

Ah well, I can always dream.

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Paris Hilton

Stupid twats wanting to fry my phone or try to embarrass me

Seriously. I leave my cell phone on in the theater because I have to monitor a number of servers and processes, and I get a text message when there's a problem. I also set my phone to ignore incoming calls and turn the sound off. It's actually a profile setting that takes a few key presses to activate.

So leave your phone-rage at the door, Mr. Muscle. If you want to get bitchy about someone's phone habits, then speak to them directly or go get an usher or manager. Then you can explain to them how this has been a horrible waste of your time, and get a free ticket to another showing.

Now, for the fun stuff. I envision an "MST3K" kind-of environment where we can send text messages to the screen, comments about the movie as it shows. That would be fun, although I am sure some twat will send stupidity up there just because he or she can. There is always one or two in a crowd.

And speaking of phone-rage and text messages, how about a special number to which you can send a quick text message to the management of a theater about a rude patron? That would be very cool.

"Theater 14, middle back row, talking on cell phone." or the like.

Paris, theater 13, middle second row from back, knob-nom'ing.

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Coat

I haven't been to the theatre/cinema since...

..Lincoln got shot.

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lurid slides!!!

I, for one, yearn for the days of a couple of minutes of ads for the local curry house. I loved that cheesy stuff - stock footage of lovely curry followed but a hastily cobbled-together voice-over of the local address.

These days, not wishing to have to sit through 15 minutes of ads waiting to see a movie I HAVE PAID FOR, me and the missis check out the up-coming movies to decide which ones to grit our teeth through and which ones to illegally download for ad-free viewing in our own home.

Of course, I would out to many more movies if the ads weren't there - really, it is the only thing stopping me - but the industry doesn't seem to want my wonga. Fair enough.

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Some tips:

Never assume the ads will go for a given time... Our local cinema has taken to showing the ads BEFORE the advertised time now, thus starting the movie on time most of the time. Hopefully this trend will catch on across the world.

Also, to avoid the cinema candy tax, you can often get away with what we locally call the "Smuggle Bag Technique". It seems that most cinema staff don't question females with handbags or small backpacks... Simply remove any unnecessary items from said bag before going to the cinema, and you can insert quite a quantity of supermarket bought candy.

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Flame

What I'd really approve of...

Would be intercepting the txts people are sending, THEN DISPLAYING THEM ON THE BIG SCREEN! Bwahahahahaha!

Yeah thats right, that'll teach people for sending me the ending of a film, BEFORE I'VE EVEN SEEN IT!

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Dead Vulture

Movie Theatre

I stopped going to the movie theatre once they started the "save our movies" campaign in Japan where some bimbo cries black tears because of all the pirated movies.

I don't miss it too much. Renting DVD's is also a no go because I have to watch the criminal warnings and all the crap before I can get to the movie without having to push my remote into oblivion.

Compare that to the streamlined P2P experience of ripped movies and the choice is obvious. No adds, no criminal warnings, click once to play file and start watching right away.

I hope that the movie industry will get their heads together and decide that people wanting to watch movies are customers instead of potential criminals and that they treat us like customers again.

AN of course

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It would almost be worthgoing to the next Bratz movie....

...in a big group and all voting for someting by Val Doonican.

But only almost.

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Enforced mobile etiquette

I remember some Aussie uni had patented a system that uses Bluetooth to make moviegoers' phones shut up.

Where the hell is it?

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Anonymous Coward

@ Kevin McMurtrie

Box office receipts only act as a measure of how many people paid to see it, not whether or not they thought it was any good. Although the further cinema stays away from the moronic drivel that fills the IMDb's forums and user-submitted reviews, the better.

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DVDs...

....arn't much better. The new ones tend to have trailers for random other movies and those rubbish 'pirating is a crime, you wouldn't steal candy from a baby' ads. I bought the damn DVD for crying out loud what more do you want from me? (besides my soul)

At least with a DVD you've got skip chapter/fast forward but its still a pain in the arse.

Haven't been to a cinema for years. £700 got me a HD (1080p) projector that fills my lounge wall. OK thats a lot of trips to the cinema but I know my lounge doesn't have annoying kids with IPods/phones/babies who insist on talking/crying over the movie. Invite the friends over, few bags of popcorn and voila.... a zillion times better than any cinema.

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Anonymous Coward

Oh come on

The bad local ads and so forth were part of the movie experience.

You used to get the ads and trailers true but also news reel, B movie or some short, maybe some cartoons as well as the main feature. They should bring all this back and make the movie experience more of a treat.

People are now getting such big screens and speakers at home that some of the "big screen" pluses are less important.

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Unhappy

@tim

Remove some unnecessary items? If only it were so simple. Apparently they are ALL necessary.

But here's the thing I don't understand. Why is it so necessary to buy extreme quantities of tooth-rot (TM) simply to watch a film?

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Pirate

Digital Cinema

@Daniel - which cinema claims that. Ours has been digital since 2006.

Not "all digital" mind because that sort of narrow mindedness means you can't show art house prints, and with that we wouldn't be in the top 10 cinemas in the world according to "Total Film" Magazine.

@Chris C - There's more to cinema than Hollywood pap, check out your local film club I'm sure they'll guide you to an art house cinema in the vicinity.

@Verizon - stick your crap up your arse :)

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@Alan W. Rateliff, II

Jesus man. Maybe you ought to cool off a bit and take a breather from work. Obviously there aren't that many "servers and processes" for you to monitor or there'd be fleshie backup (i.e. another person that does your job when you're away).

If you can't even go to the movies without worrying about work you've got the wrong job pal. I mean what do you tell your girlfriend when you're laying there are night trying to get frisky and your phone goes off "sorry babe, duty calls. I've got to go reset the database server"...

Oh wait. Since you're so busy and important you probably don't have time for a girlfriend huh.

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Stop

never understood cinemas

especially if they can't get me a beer out of the fridge or pause the film when i want to piss the previous beer out.

come on people it's 2008, cinemas only existed because people couldn't afford their own projectors... therefore they didn't mind sitting like battery chickens surrounded by idiots and bad interior design. it was better than sitting at home and looking at the wall. Whereas now, your wall probably has an HD tv on it, and you probably have a super 5.1 sound system which annoys everybody else in your block of flats because you coupled it to the thin floor. So why would you go to a cinema? You actually like paying five pounds for a gram of popcorn?

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@Solomon Grundy

Dude, if you were in the same room as me (and it wasn't so tacky in the UK anyhoo) I'd High Five you..... your comment is seriously the funniest thing I've read all week. Well done!

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Paris Hilton

There's something about advertisers

As I am reading several comments here and elsewhere, and having put together the various conversations in which I have been involved or have heard, I awaken to the reality that is advertising.

See, when a venue becomes less popular and less money comes in from the advertising as a result, rather than make the venue more attractive more advertising is pumped in. That results in less product, reduces the attractiveness of an already less attractive environment, and eventually even fewer, if any, attendees.

Theaters aren't making enough money? Throw up five minutes of advertisements before the movie starts, jack up the price of tickets. Why bother realizing that people want movies that aren't shit? What ever happened to the idea of a block-buster?

People aren't buying enough DVDs? Well, just put ads on them that cannot be skipped, guaranteeing our advertisers viewings. Oh, and jack up the price again.

Thankfully, there are plenty of programs out there to strip out the good parts of a DVD and burn it to a new one. Voila, no more crap on your DVD.

Paris, stripping out the good parts.

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