‘Ghostbusters’ Perfect Example Of How Internet Movie Ratings Are Broken | from FiveThirtyEight

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“Ghostbusters isn’t even out in theaters as I’m writing this, but over 12,000 people have made their judgment.”

With the new all-female Ghostbusters trailer the lowest-rated trailer in history, with 800,000 down votes as of today, and reports of disgruntled males claiming their childhood has been ruined, let’s turn to the refreshing stats from FiveThirtyEight‘s Walt Hickey, self-described as not having a lot of “skin in the game.”

“But this Ghostbusters thing? It lays bare so, so much of what we’re investigating when it comes to the provenance and reliability of internet ratings. Namely, they’re inconsistent, easily manipulated and probably not worth half the stock we put in them.”

Hickey mentions his preceding investigations into online ratings:


Back to Ghostbusters.

Given reports of a concerted effort to downgrade the trailer’s ratings, with “users registering with multiple dummy accounts to artificially inflate the number of dislikes,” it’s not surprising Hickey reports that on IMDB, male reviewers outnumbered “female reviewers nearly 5 to 1 and rated Ghostbusters 4 points lower, on average.” This, for a movie, Hickey points out, isn’t even out.

Hickey goes on to discuss the disparity and simplicity of the movie review aggregators, Rotten Tomatoes and Metacritic, which is his real interest. But it’s important to point out his comment in the footnotes, that Ghostbusters not only reveals what’s wrong with online movie ratings, but also shows “a lot of other stuff that’s horrible about the internet. It lays that bare, too.”


Source: ‘Ghostbusters’ Is A Perfect Example Of How Internet Movie Ratings Are Broken | FiveThirtyEight