Rotten Tomatoes Adopts Facebook's Instant Personalization

Film review website Rotten Tomatoes has integrated Facebook’s Instant Personalization so that you can get movie recommendations from your friends.

Rotten Tomatoes users who are currently logged into Facebook will be able to see ratings and reviews from their friends, share what they want to see, and get personalized recommendations. I went to the Rotten Tomatoes home page and found a link in the top right-hand corner prompting me to authorize the connection and give the site access to your basic information. Once I did, a “Friends’ Activity” box popped up on the right-hand side of the page and a small “Movies Your Friends Like” box popped up on the left. When I actually went to a movie page, “My Friends’ Ratings” appeared directly above Movie Info.

Joe Greenstein, chief executive and co-founder of Flixster, Rotten Tomatoes’ parent company, said in a statement: “Our new social features are ‘word-of-mouth’ on steroids. Our users tell us that critics’ reviews are important – but they’re just one tool they use when considering a movie.”

He added: “Flixster users have contributed more than 2.5 billion movie ratings across all of our applications, and through our partnership with Facebook we’ll help users sift through all of those ratings and instantly find the ones from people who matter the most to them.”

Rotten Tomatoes is part of Flixster, so all ratings and reviews from moviegoers will be shared across Flixster’s other properties – including Flixster.com and its movie apps for the iPhone, iPad, BlackBerry and Android devices. The company claims that more than 3 million people use Flixster’s mobile apps every weekend, while more than 30 million people each month visit Flixster and Rotten Tomatoes online and on their mobile devices.

Austin Haugen, a Facebook Platform product manager, wrote on the Facebook blog that there was more in the pipeline. “From restaurant reviews to music and television, we plan on working with select partners to create great experiences where having your friends there makes all the difference.” He added that with all instant personalization partner websites, you only bring the public parts of your profile to the third-party site.

I’m comfortable with giving Rotten Tomatoes access because I deliberately keep my Facebook profile quite sparse anyway. It’s interesting to me to see what movies my friends enjoy and it’s quite true that this factors into my decision to see a film, along with critics’ reviews. I could see myself using this tool to check out movies, especially for DVD rentals.

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