nardog's profile

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Sat, Aug 27, 2022 11:15 PM

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Deletion of a plot outline that just says "Plot under wraps" keeps getting rejected

I've twice tried deleting the plot outline of Skazka (2022), which just says "Plot under wraps," and been rejected both times, first as "Factually incorrect" and then as "Does not meet contribution guidelines" (220817-220402-134000, 220827-001418-037000). Not only is "Plot under wraps" not a plot outline but just a description of the state of whether the plot is known to the public—according to the contribution guidelines, which you say the deletion does not meet, "Outlines provide a brief description of the storyline to help inform people of the events taking place in the title"—it's not even true as it's already screened at Locarno and been reviewed by, among others, Variety, Screen, IONCINEMA, Little White Lies, and The Film Stage, which all describe the plot. The rejection is absolutely Kafkaesque.

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3 months ago

Unfortunately, this is a common problem: https://www.imdb.com/search/title-text/?plot=under-wraps

Hopefully, IMDb will respond to this matter.

Update: I like this one: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt21226634/plotsummary

(edited)

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@Marco​ The problem isn't that the plot says it's under wraps. It's that deleting it has been rejected, twice, for different reasons.

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@nardog​ Well, the problem starts with IMDb accepting these kind of submission while they should've been rejected. After all, saying a plot is under wraps is NOT a description of the plot. Of course I agree with you that it's also a problem that these "plots" won't be deleted if you ask for it.

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My point is that given the site is user-generated and it prompts you to add a plot when submitting a new title, it's understandable that "Plot under wraps" got there in the first place. That IMDb staff has rejected deleting it multiple times and even said it "does not go against any policy", even though the guidelines clearly say "Outlines provide a brief description of the storyline" and the film has already screened, indeed makes no sense and is absolutely mind-boggling.

(edited)

Fran

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515 Messages

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5.4K Points

2 months ago

Hello Nardog,

 

According to our guidelines for Plot Outlines this does not go against any policy, adding "Plot under wraps" is acceptable. This is a valid entry for the movie/project owners to let the users know that the Plot has not been released or finished yet . What we recommend you to do, is to set the correct plot by submitting a correction/modification if the plot is already known/released.

The submissions were declined because we do not delete factual information, you can correct the item instead of removing the live data. Our guidelines, information and instructions can be found on our Plot Outlines help page.

Champion

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298.7K Points

It's odd to add "Plot under wraps" to something like The Oscars. Surely it is not the project owners who have added it.

If the field is left blank, you display a prompt to add a plot. Isn't this a better placeholder?

If an official plot description has been released, copying it would also be in breach of the guidelines.

(edited)

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1.6K Points

@Fran​ That makes zero sense. Again, the film has already screened. "Plot under wraps" is clearly not "factual information". You're saying that you'd rather let incorrect information stay on your site than delete it as long as it was correct once in time. How can you place any amount of trust on such a site?

Champion

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@Peter_pbn​ Well, for The Oscars (2023) "Plot under wraps" is just silly, because we all already know what the plot outline is: something like "The presentation of the 95th Academy Awards, given for achievements in films released in 2022."

But for Skazka, "Plot under wraps" is just completely incorrect now. The film has been shown at a film festival and reviewed by critics. The plot has been revealed to the film's viewers; it's just that none of those viewers has yet gotten around to submitting that plot to IMDb for listing.

(edited)

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@Fran​ 

According to our guidelines for Plot Outlines this does not go against any policy, adding "Plot under wraps" is acceptable.

The first thing the plot outline guide (https://help.imdb.com/article/contribution/titles/plots/G56STCKTK7ESG7CP?ref_=helpsrall#outline) says about a plot outline is that "Outlines provide a brief description of the storyline to help inform people of the events taking place in the title." So literally by definition, "plot under wraps" is NOT a plot outline. Therefore, it should be removed from the plot outline section. I fail to see why you state it doesn't go against the guide. Can you clarify why you feel it doesn't go against any policy?

This is a valid entry for the movie/project owners to let the users know that the Plot has not been released or finished yet .

Well, as long as you are talking about policy, then this kind of information would fit much better in the trivia section, which "should be interesting (to at least one other person as well as you) and relate to the title." (https://help.imdb.com/article/contribution/titles/trivia/G42ZNVNNQT6P78FE?ref_=helpart_nav_41#)

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@Fran​ I tried submitting a deletion of "Plot under wraps" from Skazka (2022) with the following explanation:

This film was already shown at the Locarno Film Festival in August 2022 and has been reviewed by critics. Thus, the plot is no longer under wraps, but just has not yet been submitted to IMDb by any of the film's viewers. It would be better to leave the plot outline blank now so that this film will be on IMDb's list of titles needing plots to be submitted. See https://community-imdb.sprinklr.com/conversations/data-issues-policy-discussions/deletion-of-the-plot-outline-that-just-says-plot-under-wraps-keeps-getting-rejected/630aa592892fc367e24795c3 for further discussion.

And this deletion was rejected with the following explanation:

Your contribution has been declined.We have been unable to verify your contribution. Unfortunately we were unable to accept your submission as we were unable to verify the information provided. If your submission was placed via the IMDb.com Desktop title or name page submission form, you now have an option to provide evidence with your additions, as well as corrections or deletions. Please go to your Contribution History, re-load the submission reference and tick the box “provide an explanation to assist in processing this submission” and “check these updates”. The field will become available in the submission form. For all other submissions, please see ourHelp Sitefor further information or details on how to contact us.

What part were you unable to verify?

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@gromit82​ 

It would be better to leave the plot outline blank now so that this film will be on IMDb's list of titles needing plots to be submitted

That's a very good argument I hadn't thought about. Hopefully, it will help in making IMDb reconsider.

(edited)

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@Marco​ Well, so far it hasn't helped.

I could come up with a very basic plot outline from reading the reviews; it would be something like "Hitler, Stalin, Mussolini, and Churchill meet in the afterlife." But I would prefer not to write the plot outline that will represent this film that I haven't seen and don't know if I will ever actually see, as I don't know if it's really adequate. 

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Could someone remove the Solved tag please? The point made by @gromit82 regarding plot outlines not being in the list of titles needing plots hasn't been addressed yet. Also, the point about it being factually incorrect (in other words, a lie) for this particular title to state that the plot is under wraps also still needs addressing.

(edited)

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Thanks to whoever has changed the tag from Solved to No Status.

Fran

Employee

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515 Messages

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5.4K Points

2 months ago

Hi all, 

Feel free to modify/correct the incorrect Plot outlines using our self service on the IMDb page, in case the Live Plots are not correct or the Plots are already known, by contributing the correct data is the best way to get the database updated. Our Help Guides have the information and instructions, for you to contribute the Plot Outlines.

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@Fran​ Why is it incumbent on the person who points out a piece of incorrect information to provide the correct one to replace it with? I haven't seen the movie, and to copy someone else's plot would be copyright violation. I can of course try to paraphrase it to eschew it, but what kind of sense does it make for the burden to do that to be placed on the person who points out the inaccuracy?

Would correcting it to "Plot not under wraps" be acceptable? That would be "factual information", which "Plot under wraps" is not, though just as absurd.

(edited)

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@nardog​ 

Would correcting it to "Plot not under wraps" be acceptable? That would be "factual information", which "Plot under wraps" is not, though just as absurd.

Nice. :)

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4.2K Points

2 months ago

On mobile version you can completely change or edit plot outline/summary (fix errors, incorrect info etc.) only if it is anonymously written, but when is signed author under, you can't do nothing, because author name is not visible on site when you go through Edit Page, so you can't keep his name when you edit something, you will get this message every time - "Does not meet contribution guidelines".

This is a big problem that I hope will be solved somehow.

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@plur62​ 

I'm not seeing this problem. It's a different issue than this post is about, so you should really move this to a new post. Specify if you are referring to an app or the website.

(edited)

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2 months ago

I read through this whole thread and I have a couple of comments.

First, I think the most reasonable approach is that "plot under wraps" should be allowed before a title is released. But once the title is released, it simply makes no sense for "plot under wraps" to be the plot summary. @Fran, I think that is the point everyone is trying to make in this thread. It's all about timing: it matters whether we are talking about before a title is released versus after.

Second, I have also seen a proliferation of "plot under wraps" being retained as plots for titles that have already been released.

Below is a link to a title search showing that there are currently 493 titles with "plot under wraps" within the plot summary. Of those 493 titles, by my rough count between two and three dozen of these titles have actually been released (and therefore "plot under wraps" is an inaccurate and improper plot summary):

https://www.imdb.com/search/title/?plot=plot%20under%20wraps&sort=release_date,asc

Third, I have noticed that it can often be very difficult to edit titles that are recently released or not yet released.  This goes for plot summaries and keywords. There seems to be a special layer of "protection" that can make it difficult to edit the data for new titles. This is especially true for keywords on titles not yet released. I'm guessing that was the difficulty here for the title in question.

(edited)

Champion

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@keyword_expert​ I would also note that "Plot under wraps" should be allowed for films that have not been released, but should not be considered desirable. There are plenty of movies for which the filmmakers do not try to keep the plot completely secret before release; often the filmmakers are happy to release at least an outline of the plot. 

Perhaps anyone who submits "Plot under wraps" as an outline should be expected to provide evidence that the filmmakers are keeping the plot secret. That would avoid having it show up as a plot outline for The Oscars (2023), as it did at one point.

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@gromit82​ I agree with everything you have said here as well.

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@gromit82​ Like @Marco, I don't agree that "'Plot under wraps' should be allowed for films that have not been released", and I don't see how it is, currently, allowed under the letter and spirit of the plot guidelines (which is why Fran's response is all the more mind-boggling). It's a piece of information about the plot. That's not a plot.

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@keyword_expert​ 

I think the most reasonable approach is that "plot under wraps" should be allowed before a title is released.

This would mean that IMDb allows data that in literally 100 per cent of the cases needs an update later on. That doesn't seem like a smart policy to me.

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39.2K Points

2 months ago

@Fran 

This is getting ridiculous.

My attempts to delete "Plot under wraps" as one of the plot summaries for this title were rejected under Contribution #221002-180431-627000.

Tommy Guns (2022)

118 min | Drama, War

  8.7
 
  Rate this

Plot under wraps.

Director: Carlos Conceição | Stars: João ArraisAnabela MoreiraGustavo SumptaLeonor Silveira

Votes: 27

The title was released two months ago and has reviews all over the Internet.

Therefore, the plot for this title is no longer "under wraps." That makes "Plot under wraps" a factually inaccurate plot summary for this title. Yet IMDb will not let it be deleted.

Even worse, "Plot under wraps" is one of three different plot summaries for this title. The other two summaries are extensive and accurate:

Summaries

  • Plot under wraps.

  • In 1974, the Portuguese and their descendants fled Angola where nationalist groups gradually claimed their territory back. A tribal girl discovers love and death when her path crosses that of a Portuguese soldier. Then, a Portuguese squad is barracked inside a wall from which they will have to escape once the past comes out of the grave to claim its long-awaited justice.

  • In 1974, after years of civil war, the Portuguese and their descendants fled the colony of Angola where independentist groups gradually claimed their territory back. A tribal girl discovers love and death when her path crosses that of a young Portuguese soldier. Meanwhile, another group of Portuguese soldiers is barracked inside an infinite wall from which they will have to escape once the past comes out of the grave to claim its long-awaited justice.

Why in the world would IMDb want to retain "Plot under wraps" under these circumstances? I would think IMDb would want its data to be accurate.

(edited)

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You're right, even if they want us to modify rather than delete obsolete information as Fran says, they should have no problem deleting "Plot under wraps" for a title that already has an actual plot. This just keeps becoming more and more nonsensical and Kafkaesque.

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@nardog

Since IMDb insists on retaining "plot under wraps" for titles that have already been released, and will only allow editing rather than deleting such plot outlines, perhaps in these circumstances we should edit "plot under wraps" to read something like this:

The plot of this film was once under wraps, and now that it has been released, IMDb will not allow "plot under wraps" to be deleted from the plot outlines.

After all, that will be factually accurate.

Bethanny

Employee

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13K Points

29 days ago

Hello everyone!

I have raised a ticket to our policy team to decide how to solve this. At the moment, if the plot is no longer under wraps (as it is not obviously when movie is already released) there will be for sure a plot to add, so please instead of deleting them, replace them with the new plot. This might change when our policy team makes a decision but I will keep you posted with the resolution.

Cheers! 

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@Bethanny​ Thank you.

At the moment, if the plot is no longer under wraps (as it is not obviously when movie is already released) there will be for sure a plot to add, so please instead of deleting them, replace them with the new plot.

So IMDb's current policy is that it would rather misinformation stayed on the site than it were deleted, and the burden to provide the correct information to replace it with lies with the person who points it out. I seriously fail to see how anyone with an ounce of conscience could be comfortable representing a company with such a policy, especially when Big Tech (which said company is a part of) is accused of spreading misinformation in pursuit of revenue. (I'm not saying you are comfortable. I bet – and hope – you're not.)

The only way it makes sense is that a plot like "Plot under wraps" is never allowed in the first place, and thus deletion of such a plot is automatically approved.

The plot guidelines say "Outlines provide a brief description of the storyline to help inform people of the events taking place in the title." "Plot under wraps" clearly does not. If it is allowed (in defiance of all logic), it should at least be stated in the guidelines.

(edited)

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@Bethanny

What about situations, though, where the title has already been released, plus there is already one or more other plot summaries? Shouldn't IMDb be willing to simply delete "plot under wraps" in those circumstances?

See my example of Tommy Gunn (2022), discussed earlier in this thread, for an illustration of this problem. For that title, there is currently only one Plot Outline, which reads "Plot under wraps," but there are also three fully developed Plot Summaries. My attempts to delete the "plot under wraps" Plot Outline were rejected. I don't think I should have to write a new Plot Outline under these circumstances when the title already has three Plot Summaries, and one of those Plot Summaries will be used to display the plot for the title in the absence of a Plot Outline.

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt21226804/plotsummary

The contribution reference number for my attempts to delete the Plot Outline for Tommy Guns (2022) is below. I have a feeling that this was not actually reviewed by a human -- after all, the "reason" given for declining this contribution was "Badly Formatted," yet I wasn't trying to format anything -- I was simply trying to delete something. 

#221002-180431-627000

Declined (1)

PLOT OUTLINE DELETION

Plot under wraps. English
Your Comment
Now that this title has been released, "plot under wraps" no longer makes sense.
Reason Badly Formatted.

Your contribution has been declined. Your contribution did not meet our formatting standards. Please review our submission guides.

I can understand why IMDb would want to set up the system to resist attempts to delete Plot Outlines and Plot Summaries, since they take a lot of hard work to write and they should be protected at all cost. But there should at least be a human involved to use common sense in these kinds of situations. 

Or another idea is to add something to the coding behind the scenes that automatically deletes "Plot under wraps" once a second Plot Outline or Summary is added. That would make a lot of sense, but I don't know how easy it would be to do.

(edited)

Bethanny

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@keyword_expert​ Yes, if there is already a plot uploaded, the "plot under wraps" can be deleted.

Again all of this will be reviewed by our policy team and I will keep you all posted.

Cheers!

Champion

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Bethanny: I just want to make sure that you get my two points about "Plot under wraps":

1. Currently, "Plot under wraps" seems to be privileged in that it is hard to delete. Instead, it should be disfavored meaning that it should be hard to add and easy to delete. There are two reasons for this:

a. It doesn't provide much information.

b. In many situations, it will be inaccurate, because few filmmakers actually keep their films' plots "under wraps" (secret). Most filmmakers are willing to provide at least a plot outline before release, even if they don't necessarily submit that outline to IMDb. We saw the absurd situation earlier in this thread where The Oscars (2023), that is, the Academy Awards broadcast for next year, had been listed with "Plot under wraps".

2. Just because a film has been released and its plot is known to its viewers does not mean that any particular IMDb contributor will be able to write a plot outline for it, without having seen it. In some cases, we might be able to guess at a plot outline from reading reviews, but that will not necessarily be accurate.

And in some cases, we won't even have any reviews to work from. Take, for example, Malleable (2022). It was apparently given a limited release in June of this year, and it has 13 votes so some people have seen it, but there are no user reviews nor any external reviews. It still has "Plot being kept under wraps" as its Plot Outline, which ought to be deleted since that is no longer true, yet I don't have anything to replace it with.

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@gromit82​ 

Do we know for sure that "Plot under wraps" is privileged, or is the issue that it's hard to delete any Plot Outline when it would leave the title with zero Plot Outlines?

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3 days ago

Here are some links to find these types of "plot under wraps" empty plot summaries:

Plot Matching "plot is undisclosed" (Sorted by Release Date Ascending)

https://www.imdb.com/search/title/?plot=plot+is+undisclosed&sort=release_date,asc

Plot Matching "plot undisclosed" (Sorted by Release Date Ascending)

https://www.imdb.com/search/title/?plot=plot+undisclosed&sort=release_date,asc

Plot Matching "plot is under wraps" (Sorted by Release Date Ascending)

https://www.imdb.com/search/title/?plot=plot+is+under+wraps&sort=release_date,asc

Plot Matching "plot under wraps" (Sorted by Release Date Ascending)

https://www.imdb.com/search/title/?plot=plot+under+wraps&sort=release_date,asc

Plot Matching "plot not disclosed" (Sorted by Release Date Ascending)

https://www.imdb.com/search/title/?plot=plot+not+disclosed&sort=release_date,asc

Plot Matching "plot is not disclosed" (Sorted by Release Date Ascending)

https://www.imdb.com/search/title/?plot=plot+is+not+disclosed&sort=release_date,asc

Plot Matching "plot is not available" (Sorted by Release Date Ascending)

https://www.imdb.com/search/title/?plot=plot+is+not+available&sort=release_date,asc

Plot Matching "plot is not known" (Sorted by Release Date Ascending)

https://www.imdb.com/search/title/?plot=plot+is+not+known&sort=release_date,asc

Plot Matching "plot is unknown" (Sorted by Release Date Ascending)

https://www.imdb.com/search/title/?plot=plot+is+unknown&sort=release_date,asc

Plot Matching "plot outline" (Sorted by Release Date Ascending)

https://www.imdb.com/search/title/?plot=plot+outline&sort=release_date,asc

Plot Matching "upon request" (Sorted by Release Date Ascending)

https://www.imdb.com/search/title/?plot=upon+request&sort=release_date,asc

(edited)