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Fri, Jan 21, 2022 4:36 PM

Introducing: Subgenre & Plot Timeframe Keywords

Introducing: Subgenre & Plot Timeframe Keywords

 

 

We’d like to announce an update to our Keywords help article, which now defines specific formats for Subgenres and Plot Timeframes. This is part of an effort to make our keywords more standardized and structured, in order to aid title discovery.


In short, Subgenre keywords specify which subgenres apply to the title, and are suffixed with the corresponding genre (e.g. “jungle-adventure”). For example, most of the plot in The Jungle Book (1967) involves an adventure in the jungle, so this title should have the subgenre "jungle-adventure".


Plot Timeframe keywords specify what timeframe the title’s plot is set in and are prefixed with “timeframe-”. For example, Fences (2016) is set in the 1950s, so this title should have the keyword “timeframe-1950s” but can also have the keyword “timeframe-20th-century”.

 

Thanks as always for all your feedback – please feel free to post your questions and comments to this thread.

892 Messages

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14.6K Points

4 m ago

I recommend adding the word "sample" to the help article language regarding subgenres, as shown in bold below:

See here for sample accepted values

Otherwise, there is an implication that the listed values are the only values that will be accepted. That would be wrong, because there are easily dozens, if not hundreds, of acceptable subgenres that are not included on the list. 

Just taking horror subgenres, for example, the list does not currently include acceptable subgenre keywords like gothic-horror, body-horror, eco-horror, war-horror, retro-horror, erotic-horrorredneck-horror, giallovideo-nasty, etc. 

Then there are numerous subgenres that can cross genres, for example creature-feature, teensploitation, nunsploitation, bikersploitation, social-guidance, drug-scare, etc.

(edited)

Champion

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10.5K Messages

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2 m ago

Is the list of accepted values for timeframe keywords intended to be a complete list? I was wondering why so many others have been created that aren't listed as accepted values.

Currently some 160 keywords versus 25 in the list in the help page.

https://www.imdb.com/find?s=kw&q=timeframe+

Champion

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It seems to be difficult to edit even timeframe keywords that are not in the list of accepted values.

I tried to delete timeframe-1700s because the story is set in the 18th century but not 1700-1710, and the listed, standardized value for the 18th century is timeframe-18th-century.

#220329-130858-876000

892 Messages

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14.6K Points

@Peter_pbn​ Yes, the "timeframe-" prefix is "protected" in existing keywords.

877 Messages

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18.1K Points

2 m ago

"war-horror" is a bad subgenre since it combines two genres that could be more effectively listed unter genres.  Keywords that just combine genres were supposedly outlawed, weren't they?

P.S. Still waiting for "war-romance" to be deleted.

(edited)

892 Messages

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14.6K Points

@bradley_kent​ At least 3 of the 4 instances of the "war-horror" keyword were intended to be "horrors-of-war," anyway. I went ahead and made those changes.

877 Messages

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18.1K Points

2 m ago

The list of subgenres continues to astound me.

First, the subgenres that combine two genres should be removed. IMDb's own guidelines prohibits them:

"Repeating genres - For example, we have the genres Romance and Drama so you can submit these as genres to the title rather than submitting the keyword romantic-drama. For an exceptional genre on an episode that does not relate to the overall series, please see the -episode special keywords below."

This outlaws:  biographical-documentary, crime-documentary, history-documentary, music-documentary, sports-documentary, tragedy-drama, sports-talk-show, crime-reality-show, comedy-talk-show and any other "bad" keyword that might combine genres.  All should be deleted from this list., 

Second, some are just superfluous and redundant:  sitcom-comedy (which should probably be situation-comedy), docudrama-drama, costume-drama-history (duh?), etc.

Third, many are just plain silly:  psychological-drama, psychological-horror, psychological-thriller (Are none of the other genres "psychological"?). suspense-mystery (Isn't every mystery suspenseful?). 

I could go on and on, but... whoever created this list needs to go to college and take a course in dramatic theory so they understand the difference between "genres"and "subgenres." As an ex-college professor, I taught such a class, and a student who came up with such an extenuated and repetitive list would surely fail.

Why, this list does not even include valid subgenres like farce, high-comedy, low-comedy, screwball-comedy, neo-screwball-comedy, melodrama, slapstick-comedy, neo-noir (for God's sake!).

I see most of these fanciful and indulgent subgenre keywords just "cluttering up" the keyword lists, with rampant inconsistencies and subjective judgements (whims?) that just invalidate any usefulness as a research tool.  Most could easily be searched by entering the keyword, and then the genre.  You are making research more difficult.

And, for any of these to be valid, you will need to define everyone and then go through the millions of title on IMDb to see where they might be applicable.  Good luck!

(edited)

892 Messages

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14.6K Points

@bradley_kent​ Although many of these keywords are poorly formatted (like "sitcom-comedy"), most of the keywords are good and will facilitate rather than hinder research. Some users aren't aware that genres can be combined with a keyword search. Allowing subgenres (and genre-combination keywords) to be included in the keywords makes it easier to incorporate these concepts into keyword searches. For that reason I endorse the basic concept of allowing these types of keywords.

The problem has been in the execution (e.g., poorly formatted keywords, the seemingly random nature of the list, the implication that the list is exclusive when it is not, etc.).

40 Messages

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1.1K Points

1 m ago

May I ask: Why?

Why turn perfectly satisfactory existing keywords redundant while forcing such unwieldy looking and sounding keywords down our throats? A simple keyword like "1980s" is enough to denote that the film is set in, and is in some way representative of, that decade. We don't need an additional word like "timeframe" to know that it denotes a time frame - it is self-explanatory in itself!

Worse thing is, I cannot even delete or correct these timeframe keywords. They are like those sticky posts on a forum.

Note: This comment was created from a merged conversation originally titled The "timeframe" tag added to all the decade related plot keywords