karen_'s profile
Employee

Employee

 • 

73 Messages

 • 

5.7K Points

Mon, Dec 11, 2017 5:42 PM

Updates to User Reviews

Today we are announcing changes to User Reviews as part of the broader site update announcement (https://getsatisfaction.com/imdb/topics/upcoming-changes-to-several-imdb-features-du6man1opd5q0). After in-depth discussion and examination, we have decided to simplify the features and functionality for reviews as follows:

  • “Your Reviews” are now ordered by Date and reviews on each Title sub page are ordered by Helpfulness.We will continue to update functionality in the new year, starting by bringing back the ability to sort reviews from newest to oldest/oldest to newest. We appreciate your patience as we continue to improve the overall experience.
  • We have removed the Index view. 
  • We updated the way that reviews with spoilers are displayed.
Additionally, on our iOS and Android apps, you can now browse all reviews for a movie or show, as well as see which reviews were voted most helpful. In the next few days we’ll be updating the Review contribution experience, which will be the foundation to enabling mobile users to write and post reviews in the near future. For more information about Reviews, see the IMDbHelp Center.

Karen

Responses

4.5K Messages

 • 

131.3K Points

4 y ago

Is it possible to at least have the same format than the "ratings" page, which means that we can choose the view (grid view, detail etc. and then we can sort them chronologically or by usefulness. I just checked the '"ratings'" page and it's possible to load the titles by series of hundreds. There's no reason why that format can't be applied for reviews. Seriously, we need to be able to reach any of our reviews whenever we want.

It won't solve the filtering issue though, so I'm not sure our reviews will have that much visibility. If people can't search for reviews by prolific authors, there's no chance to reach more users with that new format.

Seriously, all whining put aside, was that really necessary?

308 Messages

 • 

12.5K Points

4 y ago

So I see it correctly that spell check (together with the entire preview option) is gone too now? What a bummer, right when I thought I kinda liked the new "write a review" window. This is a massive disadvantage for non-English native speakers like myself. Maybe it is indeed time to move on...

222 Messages

 • 

9.3K Points

4 y ago

I agree that the changes to the reviews are awful, and, as it stands now, I plan on not writing anymore reviews for IMDb.  Also, I didn't see anyone else mention this, but it seems that some older reviews have had their paragraph spacing removed.  Correct me if I'm wrong; granted, I'm having enough trouble navigating the new site with my mere 515 reviews (I can't imagine the horror for someone like planktonrules/Martin Hafer).  I approached the 1,000 words limit on some of these reviews, and they're quite ugly as a single paragraph blob.

11 Messages

 • 

4.1K Points

I just pass by the walls of text, some of which are made even more difficult as users don't space after punctuation such as commas or close parentheses. I saw some of my own reviews were marked as containing spoilers but I usually don't go past the first 1/4 of a film. Just enough to tease someone into watching it. There's one person on the site who gives every detail right down to "The End" in every "review" - they're actually summaries, little or no critical content.

929 Messages

 • 

39.3K Points

4 y ago

Just dropping in to add my voice to the general dismay.

Good things:
  • I like the sexy little side popup of the “add review”; it is pure cosmetic but it feels swish
  • I like the spoilers tag and the changes to how spoiler-tagged reviews are shown

Bad things
  • Index view / view all etc of my user comments page: finding a specific comment of mine on most titles is now impossible without endless clicking. Index view made it hugely easy either with Ctrl-F, or listing all alphabetically.
  • Sorting of title comments: I used “prolific commenters” and chronological and occasionally a few others. I really never used Helpful or Best since mostly the highest rated seemed to be those of simple thought who state popular opinion and get upvoted by the majority
The loss of functionality hurts anyone who used the user comments as a tailored experience, people who enjoyed specific writers and had them bookmarked; people who wanted to see what a certain writer said about a certain title; people who used their comments as a record of opinion they could easy revisit. Instead the User Comments is set up as cluttered ball of noise and voices, with the only value of the section being that IMDb can say that users have a place to speak their mind. But this is superficial and the value of the user comments as a section for me personally is significantly reduced by giving zero flexibility to how I can access the opinions of others.

The thing that strikes me the most I guess is how unsurprised I am by this. IMDb continues to move in a certain direction with a specific business focus which does not involve non-value adding elements. And as much as the user comments adds significant value to my IMDb experience, it doesn’t add value as defined by the business – hence it is gone, with the same “limits of technology” excuse rolled out...because apparently producing a list of titles in index view listed alphabetically is beyond the wit of man....

I appreciate the responses in this thread – we had a great community of individual user comment writers for many years, and it is sad to see that lost by this removal of features and functionality.

bob

note: I am not an IMDb employee, nor in any way affiliated with IMDb

64 Messages

 • 

3.3K Points

Hello, Mr. bob. I'm a great fan of yours. I love your work, and respect your dedication, since years. You're an icon, and a role model, for all of us (I have only 1200 reviews on IMDb). Though, I have to disagree with you on one thing; this recent change has no good things whatsoever :) Really, it can't be more shocking. How come they thought that that was improvement by any mean ?? I hope, just hope, that they may reconsider. Because of our anger, and - more - because of simple reason. Best regards.

1 Message

 • 

1.1K Points

Hey Bob I have read a lot of your reviews. Wish I could continue but as of this newest change I've simply given up.

1 Message

 • 

664 Points

If the worst comes to the worst Bob let us all know where you've transferred to . I'm sure I'm speaking for all of us when I say how much I;ve enjoyed your reviews over the years and your reviews are always the first I look to

929 Messages

 • 

39.3K Points

@Elshikh4 @Mark Grindberg @Theo

Thanks for the kind words; I think over the past 15 years I have had quite a handful of messages from people saying they look for my reviews – which was really encouraging to know.

I was lucky that having visibility has given me some credits on films/tv from filmmakers who checked out something I had written on their work. Ironically, it makes these changes sting more that nice little moments of community such as that are now gone.

Theo will confirm that I also had many writers (such as himself) that I regularly read for the pleasure of reading their opinions, or to see their thoughts on something I just watched. The only saving grace is that when I do that now for Theo’s thoughts on the original Doctor Who episodes, there are usually only a handful of comments – so not too much scrolling.

It is terribly sad to think that for any title of note, it will not be incredibly time-consuming to find a comment by a specific writer unless by chance it happens to be one they wrote very recently, or conversely to have been considered one of the most “helpful” ones.

bob

note: I am not an IMDb employee, nor in any way affiliated with IMDb

2 Messages

 • 

170 Points

4 y ago

I am horrified and devastated to see that the review index and sorting features are gone.

This is a very bad move, as the review index and sorting features are the fun parts of typing a review. Seeing the review having helpful likes, and looking at the review number I obtained (I know that's strange) are great motivating factors for me to contribute to this site. I noticed that the review number has disappeared from the comment approval confirmation email since a few weeks ago. I could still find the comment number from the review index, but now that is gone, and there is no way for me to find the comment number.

As others have said, there is now no way to find an old review - I have contributed almost 3000 reviews. I am not clicking "load more" several hundred times to find an old review.

The simplification of the review page may be easier for beginners, but it is seriously alienating the dedicated contributors. As your site has already been around for over 20 years and have a massive following, appealing to new users should not be a priority. Instead, looking after dedicated users and contributors should be the priority.

This site relies on the contribution of many dedicated contributors around the world. If the dedicated contributors leave, then the dream of having a comprehensive movie database will be impossible.

I strongly urge you to at least reinstate an option to bring back the review index and sorting functions. Thanks.

Employee

 • 

4.4K Messages

 • 

144.5K Points

4 y ago

I appreciate that you have responded to us. I think everyone knows and expects that it's a new format is a hard adjustment.  Everyone knows there are usually "bugs" that need to be worked out. And, given some of the frustration and unhappiness in the world today, a "kneejerk" reaction to changes instigated by a large corporation comes from a suspicious place. 
Thanks for the feedback on this.  One of the purposes of this thread is to gather exactly this kind of feedback from which we can build in 2018 when everything is on a unified platform. 

8.1K Messages

 • 

184.5K Points

4 y ago

Maybe we should consider cracking the "pagination keys". I don't know. Desperate times call for desperate measures. I think it may be possible to create a third party app to slup down all the reviews and reprocess them the way any given "customer" prefers via provided customization settings.

1 Message

 • 

180 Points

4 y ago

Although not a reviewer I am a regular user of IMdb. I thank all the reviewers for their time and effort and the variety of perspectives that are offered regarding film and TV Series. I use their reviews to assist in winnowing the wheat from the chaff of current film offerings.

The changes to the user reviews page that I am unhappy with are as follows:

1) Reviewer star rating no longer graphical number of stars. Previously I could skim the reviews to look for low ratings to see why that reviewer thought the film was disappointing. It is often this type of outlier review that highlights overlooked aspects to the film.

2) Pagination, the set length page with navigation bar no longer available. Limits users ability to traverse reviews where there are many reviews and seek out specific times when reviews were written.

3) Although not every reviewer listed it I found the reviewer location very useful. If, for example I was interested in a foreign film from say the middle east I could determine those from that country or region to see their opinion of the film. This was very useful to discover if the film reflected the reality of the particular country of if the film was slanted against the country. Also if there existed a national, political or religious animosity on the part of the reviewer that went beyond the films content. Example some American reviewers who would trash a film made in China simply beacuse it is Chinese or Arab reviewers who would trash an American movie simply because it is made in America.

Small gripes, I know, but these features were extremely useful to me when deciding which movies to invest my time and money by viewing.

Could they at least have a button on the page that says something like "Revert to old style reviews page" that would take you to the old style version of the page.  When youtube and yahoo mail changed they offered this option to users.

Only my 2 cents worth but considering the amount I have written I should say my 50 cents worth.

Regards

Paul

  

3 Messages

 • 

592 Points

4 y ago

These boilerplate statements overlook the elephant in the room: will the functionality of user reviews be restored once all the updates/changes have been completed, or is it gone forever? If the former, wouldn't it have made more sense to hold off on releasing the updates until they're fully functional? If the latter, can you please just tell us this is the case so that we can stop wondering and hoping?

Employee

 • 

4.4K Messages

 • 

144.5K Points

If the latter, can you please just tell us this is the case so that we can stop wondering and hoping?
It is the latter ... from the (updated yesterday) text at the top of this thread:

"We will continue to update functionality in the new year, starting by bringing back the ability to sort reviews from newest to oldest/oldest to newest. We appreciate your patience as we continue to improve the overall experience."

so, yes, the sorting functionality will return. To answer your other question 
If the former, wouldn't it have made more sense to hold off on releasing the updates until they're fully functional?
At any other time, yes, however the systems powering over 210 features at IMDb are closing down on or before 31 December 2017.  We have quite the incentive to be off them before this date, as the alternative is that anything still on the old software come 1/1 would simply cease to exist.  The IMDb product and software teams have pulled off a minor miracle in already migrating / retiring / re-inventing 202 of the 210, mostly in the last 4-6 months so we have just 8 to go now and we will make it before the holidays.  

6 Messages

 • 

354 Points

4 y ago

This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled How to find my own specific review.

Hello

Many things on IMDb changed, but I am sorry to say that most of it made it harder and more complicated to use. Among several things I do not like, my main issue is how to access specific review of my own. So far I wrote about 500 reviews. Before I was able to go to Reviews quick link and get complete list of my reviews that I could sort in several ways, alphabetically or by date etc. When sorted alphabetically it was easy to find specific review I needed. Also, I could go to page for movie in question, click on write review, get answer that I already posted review for that movie and get options to either edit or just read old review. This second direct option is disabled now and I just get an empty box to write new review even if I already have one for that movie. And quick links review option gives me all my reviews ordered by date when they were written, so the only way to find specific one is to start from the top and scroll until I find one I need. Scrolling through 500 reviews searching for one that can be anywhere on that list is tough and complicated and I can just imagine how troublesome it is for guys with thousands of reviews. I hope this is just temporary issue cause by updating IMDb in progress, but if it is permanent change you should seriously reconsider it. Please tell me if I overlooked solution for my issue cause I really spent too much time already trying everything that came to my mind. Also, canceling sorting options for movies in My Lists was really bad idea too. 

Thank you

27 Messages

 • 

1.3K Points

4 y ago

I trust Col Needham when he says 
"We will continue to update functionality in the new year, starting by bringing back the ability to sort reviews from newest to oldest/oldest to newest. We appreciate your patience as we continue to improve the overall experience."

Needham has himself more than 10.000 ratings, and I'm sure he understands the needs and frustrations. 
I trust that the migration is a difficult one, and that the changes was badly explained.

Advanced search could be better with a top choice "My ratings".

4.5K Messages

 • 

131.3K Points

To be honest, I don't care much about the new/old or old/new sorting, yes I like to have a chronological overview of  work but I think what reviewers want, what's most important to them is to have the capability to get to any review immediately, in less than say three or four clicks.

All right, I've been doing reviews since 2010, suppose I sort them chronologically so I can either have the 2010 at the top or the 2017 ones, what if I want to read one of my 2013 reviews? If IMDb provides a system that allows you to have a full listing of your reviews at once, then it'll be an improvement... but there's more.

What's the point of allowing users to vote for helpful reviews if the reviewer can't sort his own reviews by helpfulness. Yes, we want to see the reviews that were better rated than the others, call it an "ego" thing but since we're dedicating a lot of time for something we're passionate about, don't get paid for it and don't care about not being paid for it, how about allowing us that bit of satisfaction.

And how about reviewers who want to give their reviews some publicity, one who wants to apply to a movie-related job and provides the link to his reviews or one who just wants to show his writing skills, this new format doesn't help at all.

It all comes down to a simple thing: we write reviews so that anyone can be read by anyone and that means us too, IMDb's previous format was the best, whatever changes they make now, it'll never be like it used to be, because you can't guarantee that every review you wrote can be found and read, so what I'm doing right now is protecting my work, for all it's worth. 

Maybe migrating it is useless because it's just a matter of time before Letterboxd comes up with similar "updates" but I also copy paste them on Word files, I thought IMDb was the safest place to put my reviews (I really trusted it since I never copy-pasted any review before) but I was wrong.

There's no alternate scenario: the only way to make any review accessible is to get back to the old format, and that will never happen. 

Employee

 • 

4.4K Messages

 • 

144.5K Points

It all comes down to a simple thing: we write reviews so that anyone can be read by anyone and that means us too
We have heard the feedback in this thread, and as explained already, we will be adding sorting options in the New Year for both readers and authors.  We agree it is important that people can access all reviews easily and we will look at the issues with navigation. However, from our earlier official reply to this thread, you may have missed this point:
  • One change already live in the latest app versions (updates to these are rolling out now) is that all customer reviews are now available on the popular IMDb iOS and Android apps as well as the IMDb mobile site. Until this change, only a subset of reviews were available on mobile.  Far from limiting the audience of your reviews, we have more than doubled the audience with this single change.  This also clears the way for reviews to be written and submitted on mobile which is also a popular customer request. 
One of the big problems with the old system was that your reviews simply could not be read by everyone until this week. 

4.5K Messages

 • 

131.3K Points

Thanks for the reply, I guess I'm too conservative... sorry, I registered in 2004 and I got used to using the desktop for 95% of my IMDb activity. I can't stand these new changes... or let's just say: were they really incompatible with the old format?

To be honest, I never felt that my reviews had a limited audience because they were less available via the mobile medium, and I don't know how their audience can double if you can only sort the reviews in order of helpfulness, the oldest ones are the most likely to be at the top, unless you write the review of a new movie at the very time of its release, but we reviewers review old movies as well.

And supposing our reviews have a bigger audience, so far there's no way to know it, you have to sort your reviews chronologically and check at the end of each one how many users found it useful, one by one... can you imagine?

In the old system, you sorted your reviews by helpfulness and could find which ones were rated or not with the "show summaries" and we could all tell when a movie was "upgraded" because it would always affect the order in the listing and it would show at the top of some specific pages. Anyway, in less than 20 seconds, you could see if there was some new ratings of helpfulness or not.

I had my "reviews" page on my mobile and any time of the day, I could do a little check-up. But now, whenever I get to my reviews' page, I find the oldest reviews I wrote and it's perhaps the order I'm least interested in.

Maybe the new features are more interesting for the review of a newly released movie, which might explain the insistance on writing reviews on mobile, like a gut-reaction after leaving the theater... but speaking for myself, I don't know how can anyone write a review on a mobile, I think it's really diminishing the 'intellectual' value of a review to assume it can be done on a mobile.

I could never have written what I just wrote to you right now on a mobile, how shouldn't that apply for reviews? If you can allow users to write reviews on a mobile, they will not be different from Twitter reactions.

And you should also understand why people are so perplex, there's been so many infuriating changes recently, the removal of the message boards being one of them, I used to invest a lot of time and intellect on IMDb, sometimes at the expenses of my professional responsibilities, just to be able to share some thoughts with fellow movie lovers and these exchanges were all erased from the memory of the website.

I spent time suggesting polls during the daily poll days and the history page has been completely erased, it's like everything we do for IMDb can disappear at any time, and I just don't want that to happen with the reviews.

8.1K Messages

 • 

184.5K Points

Shoot. Everything we do for any website can disappear at any time.

4.5K Messages

 • 

131.3K Points

Like life I guess, everything you do for someone else can be thrown in a trash bin, serves me for being such an idealistic prick... but seriously, if it wasn't for these "updates", I would have written like ten reviews by now. I'm not sure they realize that this decision was totally counter-productive.

4 Messages

 • 

174 Points

4 y ago

Before the update, if I wanted to see if I had already reviewed a title on IMDB, all I had to do was click the "write a review" button and, if I had already written a review, it would bring up a page saying that I had already reviewed the title, and I could edit the review or replace it.

Please bring back this feature.  As it is now I have really no way of knowing if I have already reviewed a movie; the panel comes up to write a new review regardless.  I also can't just search through all my reviews either, as the site doesn't list them all on the one page (you have to keep clicking the button to make it load a few more each time).

Please bring this feature back so we can easily see and edit/replace our old reviews from the title's page.

Thanks,
-James

308 Messages

 • 

12.5K Points

I'm curious what happens if you have a review already and add another? Will there be an error message or is it simply added/ignored?

4 Messages

 • 

174 Points

I have been wondering about this myself.  I assume it won't let you review the same movie twice, but since it doesn't tell you if you have already reviewed the movie, you will waste time writing a new review and won't find out about the old one before you click submit.

2K Messages

 • 

66K Points

4 y ago

This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled Review requirements.

I hate to go on about this, but I see that there's now a minimum of 50 characters for a review. Could you change this to, let's say, 200 characters? 50 characters is short, as short as this sentence. (!)

Note: This conversation was created from a reply on: New IMDb Help hub.

29 Messages

 • 

3.3K Points

Definitely a clear example of IMDb wilfully dumbing down. I would now go as far as to say that it is now actively encouraged to post super-short reviews here, hence why the system is geared towards very short reviews on the display in that with those you would never need to click on the button to expand your review to see if it had a useful tick. The unwritten rule seems to be, keep it really short for less hassle.

With the 50 character minimum rule I could now take ten seconds to submit a review for Ingmar Bergman's Persona that only says:

'This film ROCKS my SOCKS! If you don't like it you SUCK!!!'

And that would qualify as acceptable. That doesn't sound like a step in the right direction.

2K Messages

 • 

66K Points

I'm afraid this thread isn't the right place to talk about this issue, but as you can see, IMDb has placed it here...
Anyway, I hope more people will speak their mind about the "50 characters is enough" rule.
(this post contains 208 characters)

3 Messages

 • 

172 Points

4 y ago

This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled The new format sucks..

The new format sucks. Before I could quickly scan several reviews just by the number of stars given. Now you have to look for a numeric rating on a scale of 1 to 5 at the right side of the review. The new design makes it look like all the reviews are positive when they aren't.

12 Messages

 • 

404 Points

Yes, this is horrible. Removing visual clues is just awful design.

2 Messages

 • 

80 Points

4 y ago

This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled Problem with the new user review system.

I am trying to add a review, where I wrote a list like this:

- argument 1

- argument 2

etc.

Everything else gets added, but all the points with " - " before it are removed? Do I need to list it with 1. 2. or a) b) ?

And second the reviews are sorted to "by helpfulness" I would like to sort it chronologically or by "hated it" "loved it", how is that possible now? Thanks for any help

3 Messages

 • 

234 Points

It's not possible to sort the reviews now, they removed that feature.  IMDB has special formatting rules and certain characters are not allowed in reviews.  I don't have a complete list, you just have to work around them.

308 Messages

 • 

12.5K Points

"And second the reviews are sorted to "by helpfulness" I would like to sort it chronologically or by "hated it" "loved it", how is that possible now?

At this point, unfortunately it isn't.

4.5K Messages

 • 

131.3K Points

You don't need numbers, if things get added, just get back to the text and click on "Enter" to add spaces between the paragraphs. It should work normally.

3 Messages

 • 

234 Points

Sdk ElMaruecan: The OP is referring to a bulleted list.  Pressing "ENTER" doesn't create a bullet point.

4.5K Messages

 • 

131.3K Points

I got it... my point is that you've got to put the bullets yourself or the numbers, it also works with the "-" but you've got to add them manually, pressing "ENTER" won't create a bulleted list... anyway, I've always written the reviews on Word and then copy-paste it.