Col_Needham's profile
Employee

Employee

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7K Messages

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175.9K Points

Monday, January 1st, 2018 8:01 AM

IMDb Top 250 Data Contributors for 2017

Included below is our end-of-year message to IMDb's top 250 data contributors for 2017. 

Thanks again to everyone who contributed to IMDb -- every data contribution helps. If anyone outside of the top 250 would like to know their 2017 (only) live item total and position in the complete list, please post a reply here and, for a limited time, we will try to let you know.

Happy New Year 2018 from IMDb! 

[sorry for any errors in the format due to cut-and-paste into Get Satisfaction; a clean copy is also available via the IMDb home page today at http://www.imdb.com/best-of/col-needham-letter-2018/]

Introduction and Thanks

Welcome to the 23rd edition of our end-of-year message to IMDb's top data contributors. A year in which we celebrated IMDb's 27th birthday and in which we saw a record number of data contributions. In addition to sending this letter to our Top 250 contributors, it will now be distributed to everyone who contributed data in 2017. If this is your first time reading, I am IMDb's Founder & CEO and you can catch up on old editions of the letter here, as well as follow IMDb’s progress in our press room.

We could just write "thank you" some several tens of millions of times, once for every new update you contributed in 2017, however, in this letter we like to draw attention to some of the achievements across the year. Let's start with an individual "thank you" for everything you have personally contributed - we could not do it without you - every data contribution is important, whether you are in the Top 250 or whether you made only one update.

We have continued to build new features across IMDb’s website & mobile applications and we recently completed a major technology upgrade which will significantly increase the pace of developments in 2018 and beyond for our 250+ million monthly visitors worldwide. We are thrilled to see IMDb content in use outside of the IMDb platform, particularly at our parent company of (nearly) 20 years, Amazon.com. You will see IMDb content weaved throughout the Amazon Video experience, and IMDb is powering more of the entertainment questions via voice interfaces on Alexa devices too (especially try the fun MovieBot skill).


The Numbers

The table at the end of this message shows the number of approved, non-duplicate data items which the Top 250 have contributed in 2017, including corrections and deletions. A new record of nearly 500,000 different people in turn contributed a record volume of data in 2017. Even though contribution volumes have increased and the database is more complete, we still made significant reductions in the time between submission and publication, expanding our weekend and international teams in the process.

IMDb now includes:

  • Over 4.8 million titles with over 650,000 added in 2017
  • Nearly 8.8 million names with over 700,000 added in 2017
  • Over 93 million filmography credits with over 12 million added in 2017
  • Over 6.8 million images, 3.4 million videos and 3.5 million customer reviews

More statistics are available in the press room.

The minimum number of items required to be in the top 250 contributors exceeded 12,000.


Progress

... From a contributor perspective by Thomas Porter ...

Another exciting year end, another Star Wars movie to argue about (yes, that is three references for three years in a row but who's counting?) and another trip down memory lane to look back at all the contribution-related changes and improvements. It has been quite a year...

Last year we celebrated processing 90% of contributions within 24 hours from the point of submission. In 2017 we upped this to 95% within 24 hours and took a new goal to make sure none of the remaining 5% waited more than 5 days to be processed. We care deeply about this service level and we've had a lot of positive feedback following our focus to improve it. Don’t forget, earlier this year we launched a new processing times page so you can keep an eye on progress.

We're also proud to have continued to handle 95% of your customer service contacts within 24hrs. Regulars on Get Satisfaction will have noticed all the new staff faces announcing changes and answering questions quickly, and of course we're all familiar with and eternally grateful to our Champions. Special thanks to you all for making the community so invaluable. In an effort to improve our customer service even further we also launched https://help.imdb.com/ - our new help hub centralizing submission guides, FAQs and help content in one handy place.

Speedy service was not the only focus. Speed of data availability has been super-charged over the past few years and 2017 welcomed in one of the final non-rapidly published areas of IMDb; the submission interface. Now, instead of having to wait up to 1-2 days for the submission interface to update following a data change, contributors can submit a subsequent change almost immediately (add episodes to a just-published TV series, for example). Long-time contributor Marco put it neatly: 'Just when I thought processing of contributions couldn't be faster :)'. We also (just) launched suggestion search for Titles and Companies within the new title submission form, which should make it a lot easier and faster to find the right pages.

One large piece of work spread out over the year has been replacing the technology stack known as 'Swiki', previously home to a handful of wiki-style un-vetted data types with submissions limited to a pre-approved whitelist of contributors. In its place we've launched brand new experiences for Characters, Title FAQs, Parents Guides and a new Plot page combining Synopsis with Outlines and Summaries. While we have had to say goodbye to or temporary pause some of the old page features, importantly all contributed data to these data types now benefit from the same contribution experience, vetting process and rapid publish as standard. For many of the same reasons we also rebuilt the old User Review contribution pipeline coinciding with the new Review sub page launch, and changed the supported formats for creating links within contributions.

While the benefits are not always immediately obvious, deprecating this old technology represents significant progress for the future of contribution, enabling us to focus on building bigger and better experiences next year and beyond. Thanks so much for your continued patience and support while we got to this point.

Now we're in this position, there has never been a better time to get involved on Get Satisfaction to provide your feedback and ideas to help shape that future. From contribution feature requests (like this one to have more control over primary title images, which we built and announced here earlier this year) to data policy discussions (like this announcement of our Motion Capture Cast policy) so we keep our guidelines fresh and in line with the ever evolving industry - whatever you want to discuss, we want to hear it.

So, thanks a million again to the Champs, the contributors, the Beta testers and the Get Satisfaction community. I know I speak on behalf of the entire IMDb Content team when I say it's a real pleasure to work alongside you all. See you in 2018!

Thomas Porter
Manager - IMDb Database Content


... From a customer perspective by Col Needham ...

We remain true to our original vision of gathering and organizing the largest collection of entertainment information and making it available on a wide variety of platforms. Our aim is to be the first thought for all of your entertainment information needs, whether you are a deep fan, a casual consumer, or an entertainment industry professional.

The rhythm of the entertainment industry comes from festivals, awards and the release of new movies and TV shows across the year. There is literally never a dull moment here. Our team brings coverage of these to you as they happen, increasingly with live video. New in 2017 were: our viewing party for The Oscars; an expanded IMDb studio space at The Sundance Film Festival; a bigger presence at San Diego Comic-Con; our interview studio at The Toronto International Film Festival; and our live show at New York Comic-Con. In 2018 you will see more video on IMDb and more of it live with improved playback and device compatibility.

The IMDb STARmeter awards were presented at various events to Peter Dinklage, Stan Lee, Tatiana Maslany, Sverrir Gudnason and Sam Rockwell. The award is based upon actual traffic to IMDb so every page you visit effectively forms part of the vote. Your visits to IMDb also define many of the lists in our Best Of 2017 section - thank you there too.

Finally in editorial, special thanks are due to our wonderful and active poll community whose often fun and always inventive polls appear across the IMDb sites and apps throughout the year. For poll fans, we also have a growing number of FanIQ quizzes.

One of the things which makes working at IMDb exciting for me is the way we are always improving the services and features offered to our customers, even beyond the continuous (by the second) growth in the content available. We have the main site, a mobile site, the iOS app, the Android app, the IMDbPro site, the IMDbPro iPhone app, Withoutabox and Box Office Mojo. All of these sit on top of our 250+ million item database. This means we almost never run the same software on two consecutive days (or these days, two consecutive hours). To better manage all of this complexity and to allow us to make even faster progress in future, a big focus during 2017 has been to complete the move to our new technology platform. We announced this on Get Satisfaction and we appreciated your patience while we completed this work.

The technology update does mean some temporary feature losses on the IMDb site in much the same way you would prune a garden to enable future growth. We will work on the highest impact items early in 2018 at speed, since everything is now on the same modern software system. We already simplified, replaced or updated over 200 different features or software systems, including several major ones to achieve this goal. Two of the more visible enhancements which launched late in 2017 are: support for list editing on the Android app; and the addition of all user reviews to our mobile apps instead of the previous tiny subset. This is in addition to the resolution of countless bugs in the old systems plus the implementation of many feature requests gathered in the ideas section of Get Satisfaction over the years.

We are particularly pleased with the progress on our mobile apps in 2017 and you can read release notes or reviews in the iOS and Android stores. We will continue to work on creating simple, fast, and easy features which are as consistent as possible between the various IMDb web sites and apps.

One of our goals is to make advertising units which our customers will love. If you are located in the UK or US, you may have seen our updated enhanced title pages, with Blade Runner 2049 (2017), Star Wars: The Last Jedi (2017) and Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle (2017) being team favourites.

On IMDbPro we have launched a steady stream of features and updates, including: the ability to manage featured images on IMDb/IMDbPro/Amazon Video; an easier resume data management system; streamlined news; improved box office; easier sign-up with Amazon Payments; and the much-requested IMDbPro iPhone app.

Our film festival submissions platform, Withoutabox, welcomed new festivals including Tribeca, The LA Film Festivals and (local to us) The Bristol Encounters Short Film Festival, as well as continuing to represent major festivals such at The Sundance Film Festival, The Toronto International Film Festival and The Edinburgh International Film Festival. We added new search options for filmmakers and improved judging and management tools for festivals are now launching.

Overall it has been a busy year for updates and one which has also seen a record number of new customers registering with IMDb. Thanks to our growing international community, we now have over 200,000 Indian movie, TV, and celebrity pages on IMDb. We have observed strong growth in our user base from India, and are happy to see strong engagement with our trending feature. This helps fans stay up to date on the global movies and TV shows trending in India, as well as the most anticipated Indian movies. We have grown our presence on social media and hopefully many of you are enjoying our regular email program which will become more customized in 2018. We added ticketing options via Atom Tickets in summer, with fun features such as the ability to order drinks and snacks to be ready-made for collection upon arrival at the cinema. IMDb data is becoming more alive via the addition of features such as soundtrack samples too. Finally, after 26 years in operation, we are moving the public IMDb data from FTP to an Amazon S3 and https replacement service.

We are looking forward to a fabulous 2018 and to serving you better as both contributors to and customers of the IMDb data. If you would like to join our team or have friends or contacts with the very particular set of skills we are seeking, please keep an eye on our jobs page where we are regularly recruiting in Bristol or London in the UK and Seattle, Santa Monica or New York City in the US.


Thanks and Feedback

In recognition of your contributions, as usual, we are offering everyone in the Top 250 contributors free access to IMDbPro for all of 2018. [Separate instructions have already been emailed to the Top 250].

Thanks again for all your support during the year. As always, ideas and constructive feedback are welcome via Get Satisfaction.

We wish you a Happy New Year!

Col Needham
IMDb Founder and CEO, on behalf of the whole IMDb Team

[the actual list will be posted in the Contributor Zone Hall of Fame within the next day or so; a copy of this letter, including the list, will also be emailed to every 2017 contributor]

66 Messages

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2.4K Points

7 years ago

Hi Col Needham. I didnt get this as Email so im wondering if I didnt make the top 250.  Cane you tell me my total here? http://www.imdb.com/user/ur20035606/

Employee

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7K Messages

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175.9K Points

Sorry about that -- have you opted out of email communications from either IMDb or Amazon? 

You were #30 with 89,814 items (!!) ... thank you!

66 Messages

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2.4K Points

Thank You for the manual information. Not sure what happened with the Email I only opted out of  IMDb Informational Emails the ones that say Popular Trailers and Tips & Tricks. Could that be the cause?

Employee

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7K Messages

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175.9K Points

Yes, this is definitely the cause.  Unfortunately if you opt-out of IMDb emails, we are not allowed to email you outside of confirmations of data submissions.  You can control this via https://www.imdb.com/preferences/email 

Champion

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7.3K Messages

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273.9K Points

7 years ago

Col: Can you please post my ranking for 2017? Thanks.

Employee

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7K Messages

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175.9K Points

My pleasure ... you were #952 with 2,591 items, thanks (and nearly as many GS likes / posts, thank you :-).

Hopefully you received the separate email for GS champs on IMDbPro.

Champion

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7.3K Messages

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273.9K Points

Col: Actually, I only received the general e-mail titled "Happy New Year from IMDb / 2017 year end totals".

Employee

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7K Messages

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175.9K Points

Sorry about this.  I will follow-up with the team when everyone is back in the office.

21 Messages

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422 Points

7 years ago

Col Needham, where I did rank this year, please, sir. Work interfered with my data submissions. I'll try to get back in the Top 250 next year!

Champion

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7.3K Messages

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273.9K Points

Skip: Check your e-mail for a message titled "Happy New Year from IMDb / 2017 year end totals". It looks like you did make the Top 250 for 2017 (assuming you are user SkipEastport as your name implies).

21 Messages

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422 Points

Thanks, gromit82. I haven't received any emails since my last data submission. I just checked my email, spam box, etc, and I don't have a message, which is why I assumed I didn't make the cut this year.

Employee

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7K Messages

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175.9K Points

Sorry about that -- have you opted out of email communications from either IMDb or Amazon? 

You were #53 with 57,124 items, thanks. 

2 Messages

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140 Points

7 years ago

I also didn't get the email, but I have to assume I'm top 250. Did I miss the boat?

Employee

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7K Messages

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175.9K Points

Sorry about that -- have you opted out of email communications from either IMDb or Amazon? 

You should have received the email as you were #34 with 73,880 items, thanks. 

9.5K Messages

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158K Points

7 years ago

I also didn't get an email titled "Happy New Year from IMDb / 2017 year end totals", but I am pretty sure I was well above the 12,000 mark for 2018 too.

 I had a recent issue with my spam filter, so that may have been the cause???  I have been getting my IMDb contribution confirmation e-mails, however. Can I check my status too, as well as, how do I get the e-mail resent? I think I have resolved the spam filter issue.

Can someone post the Top 250 list or provide a link if one is yet available?

Employee

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7K Messages

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175.9K Points

The end-of-year email is now sent via a different system than the contribution confirmation emails. 

It is possible this was a spam filter issue, although have you opted out of email communications from either IMDb or Amazon?

You were #37 with 72,160 items, thanks. 

As mentioned at the end of the copy of the letter above:

"[the actual list will be posted in the Contributor Zone Hall of Fame within the next day or so; a copy of this letter, including the list, will also be emailed to every 2017 contributor]"

9.5K Messages

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158K Points

Yes, It is possible this was a spam filter issue. I have reset my yahoo mail with no blocked addresses, I am not sure if IMDb or Amazon were blocked or not before. I also have updated my IMDb account email address to a gmail account, just now to be ensure that "blocking" is not the source of the issue.

I also had elected "Do not send me informational emails" in my IMDb email settings.

"IMDb Informational Emails

Note: Even if you choose not to receive informational emails from us, you will still receive transactional emails, such as information about your account.

Send me emails from the following categories
Popular Trailers - We'll occasionally send you popular trailers for movies and TV shows we think you'll like.
Tips & Tricks - From advance search tricks, to making lists, or leaving ratings and reviews, we’ll help you get the most out of IMDb.

  x Do not send me informational emails."

I just now unchecked that box, assuming that is the source of the issue.
2017 37	72160	urbanemovies
2016 47 43454 urbanemovies
Can I get the e-mail with  the IMDb Pro award passcode for urbanemovies  and titled "Happy New Year from IMDb / 2017 year end totals" resent?

82 Messages

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2.2K Points

7 years ago

I have a doubt with image contributions.
For example, i upload Photo X and i indicate that the actors A and B are in the Photo. It is one contribution or two contributions?
If the Photo is at the film profile yet and i do a contribution And say actor C is in the photographs... It is a contribution too?

Other doubt
I subbmited a new title and i indicate the Cast of 123 actors... It is one contribution or It is 123 contributions??

Thanks a lot.

Employee

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7K Messages

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175.9K Points

It is individual items so the answers to your questions are:  3, yes, and 123.

24 Messages

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540 Points

7 years ago

I didn't get the e-mail either or the badge and somebody forwarded me the list and my user name is on the list of the Top 250.

Employee

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7K Messages

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175.9K Points

Sorry about that -- have you opted out of email communications from either IMDb or Amazon? 

24 Messages

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540 Points

I still get all of my submission receipts and everything. I didn't even get the little Top 250 badge on my account for this year. (I have the previous 5 years worth of TC badges but not the 2017 one.

Employee

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7K Messages

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175.9K Points

The end-of-year email is now sent via a different system than the contribution confirmation emails. 

The 2017 badges have not been issued yet, sorry. 

Champion

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4.3K Messages

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88.6K Points

7 years ago

Can I please have my numbers as well?

Employee

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7K Messages

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175.9K Points

You should have received the email as you were #137 with 22,845 items, thanks. 

Have you opted out of email communications from either IMDb or Amazon? 

Champion

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4.3K Messages

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88.6K Points

I guess so. How do I get my Pro account going?

Champion

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3K Messages

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72.5K Points

7 years ago

I haven't received an email either, nor do I show a badge which would be surprising given how much I contribute on a daily basis. Can you tell me if I made the top 250?

http://www.imdb.com/user/ur0067163

Employee

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7K Messages

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175.9K Points

Have you opted out of email communications from either IMDb or Amazon?

You should have received the email as you were #69 with 41,032 items, thanks.

The 2017 badges have not yet been issued; they will probably be added within the next week. 

Champion

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6.5K Messages

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116K Points

7 years ago

This has been the first time in many years I did not even received an IMDb happy new year e-mail, I am sadly surprised and can't believe I did not add much information. Could I please get my totals?

Pencho15

http://www.imdb.com/user/ur2386398/

Employee

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7K Messages

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175.9K Points

You were #514 with 5,588 items, thank you. 

Sorry about the email, however, we are unable to send emails to people who have opted-out of emails from IMDb or Amazon (other than contribution confirmation emails).  You can control your IMDb email preferences at https://www.imdb.com/preferences/email

Employee

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7K Messages

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175.9K Points

No sorry, you do not have to receive emails from us about trailers (nor tips & tricks). Over on https://www.imdb.com/preferences/email you just to have NOT selected the "Do not send me informational emails" option:



(and similarly on Amazon since the emails are distributed via Amazon)

If you have the other option checked but with Popular Trailers / Tips & Tricks unchecked, we can still email the end-of-year message and you should not hear from us, unless we launch another category of email (in which case another custom opt-in/out checkbox will be added).

Unfortunately IMDb has no control over this policy.  It is a legal requirement in jurisdictions which apply to us. 

We are looking at options on how to notify people who opted-out and also options to have next year's email reclassified as a transaction related email since it ultimately relates to contributions.

Employee

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7K Messages

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175.9K Points

But, out of curiosity, how many contributions would you be thanking me for if I liked trailers? (ur1029917)
You were #174 with 19,097 items, thanks!

Champion

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6.5K Messages

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116K Points

Thanks for the information. I never changed my e-mail configuration, so if I received them before I should have received them now, but I'll check.

Follow the IMDb Polls in Facebook and Twitter

45 Messages

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676 Points

Unfortunately, I agree with much or most of what Phil G has posted here.  There is not a lot of feedback when postings are made, especially LARGE data entry postings, and questions are often not answered.  It is especially irritating when there are many entries made for a title, but there is a crash somewhere, and all of those entries are LOST!  Now, with the recent changes to IMDb, there are some things which require more effort (and therefor, more time), and there are other things which are no longer possible, such as company research for POSTINGS!  I never actually found IMDb PRO worthwhile for contacting companies or people, etc., but I did find PRO worthwhile for research to figure out which companies (with same or similar names) are the right ones for data entry.  Now, that requires PRO membership (paid) just for basic company information/research in order to complete data entry postings with correct information, especially for films with detailed and/or complicated credits.  While I do understand not giving away PRO to everyone, as the number of people who are major posters has increased, the number of top PRO memberships has not.  The idea that contributors with 6,000, or 8,000, or even 10,000 entries per year are no longer enough is unbelievable!  Anyone who averages over 500 entries per month is contributing SERIOUS TIME to IMDb, with nothing more than a thank you.  How about instead of just keeping the same number of top posters per year, that the criteria gets changed to anyone who contributes more than X number per year, so that serious posters do not feel like they are being left out or receiving no real gratitude.  If that does not work, then come up with some other prize structure.  Surely, there has to be something else worthwhile, so that major posters do not feel like they are being taken advantage of.or taken for granted!  Thanks for reading and for considering my point of view.  Happy New Year!

52 Messages

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1.4K Points

7 years ago

Can I ask what mine was? Curious to know if I was even close

52 Messages

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1.4K Points

Do we need Col to tell us if we are outside the top 250?

Champion

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6.5K Messages

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116K Points

Yes, if you did not receive an e-mail saying you were one of the top 250, then you need to ask to know your number

Follow the IMDb Polls in Facebook and Twitter

Employee

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7K Messages

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175.9K Points

You were #3,893 with 527 items, thanks!

52 Messages

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1.4K Points

Thanks Col, much appreciated

Champion

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14.1K Messages

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326.4K Points

7 years ago

The top 250 is now listed here:
https://contribute.imdb.com/czone/hal...

The profile links in the list seem to lead to 404 errors because of a missing /

9.5K Messages

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158K Points

thanks, very helpful

52 Messages

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1.4K Points

Do we need Col to tell us if we are outside the top 250?

Champion

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14.1K Messages

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326.4K Points

Yes.

3 Messages

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110 Points

7 years ago

Hi, thanks for the email (I didn't qualify for one in 2016). Please could you tell me my numbers? Thanks.

Employee

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7K Messages

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175.9K Points

You had less than 225 items, so we are unable to report your exact position, sorry.  Thank you for contributing in any case. 

2.7K Messages

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82.1K Points

7 years ago

Col, it's been quite a while since I had to ask, but how did I do in 2017?

2.7K Messages

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82.1K Points

Col, it's been quite a while since I had to ask, but how did I do in 2017?
Okay, it appears I don't have to ask since I DID make the list this year, I just didn't get the mail because of my settings (which I've changed now so I'm ready for the mail next year :)).

48 Messages

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1.5K Points

7 years ago

Can you please tell me my position and the number of contributions I sent last year?

Employee

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7K Messages

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175.9K Points

You were #792 with with 3,315 items, thanks!