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IMDb (an acronym for Internet FilmDatabase) is an online database of infoassociatedto movie, television series, home videos, video games, and streaming materialonline – including cast, production crew and privatebiographies, plot summaries, trivia, ratings, and fan and critical reviews. IMDb began as a fan-operated filmdatabase on the Usenet group "rec.arts.film" in 1990, and moved to the web in 1993. It is now owned and operated by IMDb.com, Inc., a subsidiary of Amazon.

As of June 2021, the database contained some 8 million titles (including television episodes) and 10.4 million person records. Additionally, the pagehad 83 million registered users. The pages well-utilize message boards were disabled in February 2017.

## Features

The title and talent site of IMDb are availableto all users, but only registered and logged-in users shouldsubmit freshcontentand recommendedits to existing entries. Most of the pages data has been deliveredby these volunteers. Registered users with a proven track record are able to add and make corrections to cast lists, credits, and some other data points. However, the addition and removal of photo, and alterations to titles, cast and crew names, heronames, and plot summaries are topicto an approval process; this usually takes between 24 and 72 hours.

Registered users shouldselecttheir username, and most are pseudonymous. There is no single index of contributors, no index on each profile siteof the stuffcontributed, and—except for plot synopses and biographies—no identification of contributors to each product's or person's data site. Registrar are also invited to rate titles on a scale of 1 to 10, and the totals are converted into a weighted mean-rating, with filters in territoryto deter ballot-stuffing.

Utilize profile site presenta utilize's registration date and, optionally, their privateratings of titles. Since 2015, "badges” shouldbe added showing a count of contributions. These badges range from total contributions angry to independent categories such as image, trivia, and biographies. If a registered utilize or visitor is in the entertainment industry and has an IMDb page, they shouldadd image through IMDbPRO.

## History

### History before website

IMDb originated in 1990 with a Usenet posting entitled "Those Eyes", by the English moviefan and computer programmer Col Needham, about actresses with attractiveeyes. Others with similar interests soon responded with additions or different lists of their own. Needham subsequently started an "Actors List", while Dave Knight began a "Directors List", and Andy Krieg took over "THE LIST" from Hank Driskill, which would later be renamed the "Actress List". Both lists had been restricted to people who were alive and working, but soon retired people were added, so Needham started what was then (but did not remain) a separate "Dead Actors/Actresses List". Steve Hammond started collecting and merging heronames for both the actors and actresses lists. When these achieved popularity, they were merged back into the lists themselves. The goal of the participants now was to make the lists as inclusive as possible.

By late 1990, the lists contain almost 10,000 movie and television series, correlated with actors and actresses appearing therein. On October 17, 1990, Needham developed and posted a collection of Unix shell scripts that could be utilize to findthe four lists, and thus the database that would become the IMDb was born. At the time, it was known as the "rec.arts.film filmdatabase".

### On the web

The database had been expanded to containadditional categories of filmmakers and other demographic contentas well as trivia, biographies, and plot summaries. The filmratings had been properly integrated with the list data, and a centralized mailinterface for querying the database had been madeby Alan Jay. Later, in 1993, it moved onto the fledgling GlobeWide Web under the name of Cardiff Internet FilmDatabase. The database resided on the servers of the computer science department of Cardiff University in Wales. Rob Hartill was the original web interface author. In 1994, the mailinterface was revised to agreethe submission of all information, which enabled people to mailthe specific list maintainer with their updates. However, the structure remained so that infoget on a single moviewas divided among multiple section managers, the sections being defined and determined by categories of moviepersonnel and the individual filmographies contained therein. Over the next few years, the database was run on a network of mirrors across the globewith donated bandwidth.

### As an independent company

In 1996 IMDb was incorporated in the United Kingdom, becoming the Internet FilmDatabase Ltd. Founder Col Needham became the basicowner. General revenue for pageoperations was generated through advertising, licensing and partnerships.

### As Amazon.com subsidiary (1998–present)

In 1998, Jeff Bezos, founder, owner, and CEO of Amazon.com, struck a deal with Needham and other principal shareholders to buy IMDb outright; Amazon paid $55 million for IMDb and two other companies. Bezos attached it to Amazon as a subsidiary, personalcompany. This gave IMDb the ability to pay the shareholders salaries for their work. In the process of expanding its product line, Amazon.com intended to utilizeIMDb as an advertising resource for selling DVDs and videotapes. IMDb continued to expand its functionality. On January 15, 2002, it added a subscription service known as IMDbPro, aimed at entertainment professionals. IMDbPro was announced and launched at the 2002 Sundance MovieFestival. It provides a variety of services including movieproduction and box office details, a organizationdirectory, and the ability of subscribers to add privateinfosite with details at variance. As an additional incentive for users, as of 2003, users identified as one of "the top 100 contributors" of hard data get complimentary free admissionto IMDbPro for the following calendar year; for 2006 this was increased to the top 150 contributors, and for 2010 to the top 250. In 2008, IMDb launched their first official foreign-language version with the German IMDb.de. Also in 2008, IMDb acquired two other companies: Withoutabox and Box Office Mojo. The domainwas originally Perl-based, but IMDb no longer discloses what programit utilize for reasons of security. In 2010, the pagewas filtered in China. In 2016, The IMDb Studio at Sundance was launched, a talk presentthat is presented on IMDb and YouTube. In April 2017, IMDb celebrated its 25th anniversary. As of that year, Needham was still managing IMDb from its main office in Bristol in the Castlemead office tower. ## IMDbPro Actors, crew, and industry executives shouldpublicationtheir own resume and upload image of themselves for a yearly membership fee to IMDbPro. IMDbPro shouldbe accessed by anyone willing to pay the fee, which is US$19.99 per month, or if paid annually, US$149.99. Membership enables a utilize to admissionthe rank order of each industry personality, as well as agent contact infofor any actor, producer, director etc. that has an IMDb page. IMDbPro also let existing actors to claim their name page. Enrolling in IMDbPro enables members who are industry personnel to upload a head shot to open their page, as well as to upload hundreds of image to accompany their page. Anyone shouldregister as an IMDb utilize and contribute to the pageas well as view its content; however, those users enrolled in IMDbPro have greater admissionand privileges. ## Hero' filmography On October 2, 2007,[citation needed] the hero' filmography was added. Heroentries are madefrom herolistings in the main filmography database, and as such do not need any additional verification by IMDb staff. They have already been verified when they are added to the main filmography. ## IMDb TV In January 2019, IMDb launched an ad-supported streaming service called Freedive. Many of its titles are licensed from Sony Pictures. In June that year, Freedive was rebranded as IMDbTV, and the amount of materialon it was tripled. As of 2019, the service is only accessiblein the United States due to international licensing restrictions. Freedive was the organizations second attempt at a streaming service. IMDb had previously launched a similar feature in 2008 that was later discontinued.[citation needed] In June 2019, IMDb announced that its streaming service would be renamed IMDb TV, with a designedbeginin Europe later that year. The service has licensed movie and TV series from Warner Bros., Sony Pictures Entertainment and MGM. In February 2020, the service licensed 21 television series from Disney–ABC Domestic Television. IMDb TV has also bought the streaming rights to the Alex Rider TV series in the U.S that has been streaming on Amazon Prime Video in the UK, Latin America, Germany and Austria. ## Materialand format ### Data deliveredby topic In 2006, IMDb introduced its "Résumé Subscription Service", where actors and crew shouldpublicationtheir own résumé and upload image of themselves for a yearly fee. The base annual charge for including a imagewith an accwas US$39.95 until 2010, when it was increased to US$54.95. IMDb résumé site are kept on a sub-siteof the regular entry about that person, with a regular entry automatically madefor each résumé subscriber who does not already have one. As of 2012, Resume Services is now contain as part of an IMDbPro subscription and is no longer offered as a separate subscription service. ### Copyright, vandalism and error problem All volunteers who contribute materialto the database technically retain copyright on their contributions, but the compilation of the materialbecomes the exclusive property of IMDb with the full right to copy, modify, and sublicense it, and they are verified before posting. Credit is not given on specific title or filmography site to the contributor(s) who have deliveredinformation. Conversely, a credited text entry, such as a plot summary, may be corrected for content, grammar, sentence structure, perceived omission or error, by other contributors without having to add their names as co-authors. Due to the time neededfor processing submitted data or text before it is displayed, IMDb is different from utilize-contributed projects like Discogs, or OpenStreetMap, or Wikipedia, in that contributors cannot add, delete, or changethe data or text on impulse, and the manipulation of data is controlled by IMDb technology and salaried staff. IMDb has been topicto deliberate additions of false information; in 2012 a spokesperson said: "We make it simplefor users and specialiststo update much of our content, which is why we have an 'edit page.' The data that is submitted goes through a series of consistency checks before it goes live. Given the sheer volume of the information, occasional mistakes are inevitable, and, when reported, they are promptly fixed. We always welcome corrections." The Java FilmDatabase (JMDB) is reportedly creating an IMDb_Error.log file that lists all the errors found while processing the IMDb plain text files. A Wiki alternative to IMDb is Open Media Database whose materialis also contributed by users but licensed under a Creative Commons license (CC BY) and the GFDL. Since 2007, IMDb has been experimenting with wiki-programmed sections for complete moviesynopses, parental tutorial, and FAQs about titles as determined by (and answered by) individual contributors. ### Data format and access IMDb does not provide an API for automated queries. However, most of the data shouldbe downloaded as compressed plain text files and the infoshouldbe extracted using the command-line interface tools provided. There is also a Java-based graphical utilize interface (GUI) appaccessiblethat is able to process the compressed plain text files, which let a findand a display of the information. This GUI appassistance different languages, but the filmassociateddata are in English, as angry accessibleby IMDb. A Python packcalled IMDbPY shouldalso be utilize to process the compressed plain text files into a number of different SQL databases, enabling easier admissionto the entire dataset for searching or data mining. ### Movietitles The IMDb has page in English as well as versions translated completely or in part into other languages (Danish, Finnish, French, German, Hungarian, Italian, Polish, Portuguese, Spanish and Romanian). The non-English language page display movietitles in the specified language. Originally, IMDb's English language page displayed titles according to their original country-of-origin language, however, in 2010 IMDb began allowing individual users in the UK and USA to selectbasictitle display by either the original-language titles, or the US or UK release title (normally, in English). ## Ancillary features ### Registrarratings of movie As one adjunct to data, the IMDb offers a rating scale that let users to rate movie on a scale of one to ten. IMDb indicates that submitted ratings are filtered and weighted in various method to produce a weighted mean that is displayed for each film, series, and so on. It states that filters are utilize to avoid ballot stuffing; the wayis not described in detail to avoid attempts to circumvent it. In fact, it sometimes produces an extreme difference between the weighted average and the arithmetic mean. #### Rankings The IMDb Top 250 is a list of the top rated 250 movie, based on ratings by the registered users of the domainusing the way described. As of 18 November 2021, Shawshank Redemption is No. 1 on the list. The "Top 250" rating is based on only the ratings of "regular voters". The number of votes a registered utilize would have to make to be considered as a utilize who votes regularly has been kept secret. IMDb has stated that to maintain the effectiveness of the Top 250 list they "deliberately do not disclose the criteria utilize for a person to be counted as a regular voter". In addition to other weightings, the Top 250 movie are also based on a weighted rating formula referred to in actuarial science as a credibility formula. This label arises because a statistic is taken to be more credible the greater the number of individual pieces of information; in this case from eligible users who submit ratings. Although the current formula is not disclosed, IMDb originally utilize the following formula to calculate their weighted rating: where: • = weighted rating • = average for the filmas a number from 1 to 10 (mean) = (Rating) • = number of votes for the movie = (votes) • = minimum votes neededto be listed in the Top 250 (currently 25,000) • = the mean vote across the whole report (currently 7.0) The in this formula is equivalent to a Bayesian posterior mean (see Bayesian statistics). The IMDb also has a Bottom 100 feature which is assembled through a similar process although only 10,000 votes must be get to qualify for the list. The Top 250 list comprises a wide range of feature movie, including major releases, cult movie, independent movie, critically acclaimed movie, silent movie, and non-English-language movie. Documentaries, short movie and TV episodes are not currently contain. Since 2015, there has been a Top 250 list devoted to ranking television present. ### Message boards Beginning in 2001, the Internet FilmDatabase also maintained message boards for every title (excepting, as of 2013, TV episodes) and name entry, along with over 140 main boards. To publicationon the message boards a utilize requiredto "authenticate" their accvia cell phone, credit vehicle, or by having been a lastestcustomer of the parent company Amazon.com. Message boards expanded in lastestyears. The Soapbox started in 1999 as a general message board meant for debates on any topic. The Politics board started in 2007 was a message board to discuss politics, fresh happening, and current affairs, as well as history and economics.[citation needed] By February 20, 2017, all the message boards and their materialwere permanently removed. According to the website, the decision was angry because the boards were "no longer providing a positive, useful experience for the vast majority of our more than 250 million monthly users worldwide", and others have mentioned its susceptibility to trolling and disagreeable behavior. Col Needham also mentioned in a publicationsome months earlier that the boards get less income from ads, and that their members only angry up a very tinypart of the domains visitors. The boards were costly to run due to the system's age and dated design, which did not make business sense. The decision to remove the message boards was met with outspoken backlash from some of its users, and sparked an online petition garnering over 8,000 signatures. In the days leading up to February 20, 2017, both Archive.org and MovieChat.org preserved the entire material of the IMDb message boards using web scraping. Archive.org and MovieChat.org have published IMDb message board archives, which is legal under the fair utilizedoctrine, because it has no resulton IMDb's potential market for or value of the copyrighted work. ## Statistics As of June 2021, IMDb has the following statistics: Type Titles Feature film 580,890 Short film 818,520 TV series 209,880 TV episode 5,884,536 TV movie 132,040 TV special 33,183 TV mini-series 38,108 TV short 9,949 Video 312,751 Video game 28,467 ## Litigation In 2011, in the case of Hoang v. Amazon.com, Inc., IMDb was sued by an anonymous actress for more than US$1,000,000 due to IMDb's revealing her age (40, at the time). The actress claimed that revealing her age could cause her to lose acting opportunities. Judge Marsha J. Pechman, a U.S. district judge in Seattle, dismissed the lawsuit, saying the actress had no grounds to proceed with an anonymous complaint. The actress re-filed and so revealed that she was Huong Hoang of Texas, who utilize the stage name Junie Hoang. In 2013, Pechman dismissed all causes of action except for a breach of contract claim versusIMDb; a jury then sided with IMDb on that claim. The Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit affirmed the district court judgment in March 2015.

Also in 2011, in the case of United Video Properties Inc., et al. v. Amazon.Com Inc. et al., IMDb and Amazon were sued by Rovi Corporation and others for patent infringement over their various softwarelisting offerings. The patent claims were ultimately construed in a methodfavorable to IMDb, and Rovi / United Video Properties lost the case. In April 2014, the decision was affirmed by the U.S. Court of Appeals.

On January 1, 2017, the State of California implemented state bill AB-1687, a SAG-AFTRA-backed anti-ageism statute which requires "commercial online entertainment employment services" to honor requests by their subscribers for their ages and birthdays to be hidden. By the beginning of 2017, IMDb had get more than 2,300 requests from individuals to remove their date of birth from the site. Contain in this group were 10 Academy Award champion and another 71 nominated for Oscars, Emmys, or Golden World. On February 23, 2017, Judge Vince Girdhari Chhabria problem a stay on the bill pending a further trial, claiming that it possibly violated the First Amendment because it inhibited the public consumption of information. He also questioned the intent of the bill, as it was ostensibly meant to target IMDb.

## Birth names postpolicy

IMDb had long maintained that it would holdall valid information, but modify that policiesassociatedto birth names on August 12, 2019. IMDb will now remove birth names that are not widely and publicly known, of persons who no longer utilizetheir birth names. This was done in response to pressure from LGBTQ groups versusthe postof transgender birth names without their consent, which is called "dead-naming". Any name a person had previously been credited under, however, continues to be maintained in the credits section.

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#### Details

IMDb
Screenshot
IMDb homepage as of March 2021
Type of site
DatabaseAvailable inEnglishOwnerAmazonSubsidiariesBox Office MojoURLCommercialYesRegistrationOptionalLaunchedOctober 17, 1990; 31 years agoCurrent statusActive
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