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artisanal film reviews | by maryann johanson

question of the day: Is “Like our Facebook page” the new “Visit the official movie site”?

The Watch Facebook page

I’ve been noticing lately that official movie Web sites seem to be on the wane, and I’ve been kicking this observation around as the possible basis for a QOTD for a while. What made me realize the time was right was a tweet from my fellow critic Mike McGranaghan, aka @aisleseat, on Friday:

He’s right. There’s a pathetic excuse for an official site at the general Fox Movies under the “Now Playing” tab. If there’s any online home for The Watch, it’s at Facebook, at the film’s Facebook page. There’s little here you wouldn’t find at the film’s IMDb page (though there’s one interesting tidbit: the URL jointhewatch.com, which appears to be an indication that an official site was contemplated, redirects to the FB page). There’s also not that much you would expect from an FB presence: with 29,000+ likes, there appears to be little engagement — as, say, in the form of comments on wall posts — with Like-ers.

Is “Like our Facebook page” the new “Visit the official movie site”? Does it even matter if official movie sites go away? Who actually used them, anyway?

One semi-related thing to consider when thinking about whether official sites might go away entirely is this: AllFacebook reports on the results of a study that concludes “Customers Still Prefer Company Websites To Facebook Pages.” The study was about brands, not movies, but selling a movie is kinda like creating and selling a new brand, so there may be some application here.

(If you have a suggestion for a QOTD, feel free to email me. Responses to this QOTD sent by email will be ignored; please post your responses here.)



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