The Internet Movie Database (IMDb) is an online database of information related to movies, actors, television shows, production crew personnel, video games, and most recently, fictional characters featured in visual entertainment media. IMDb launched on October 17, 1990, and in 1998 was acquired by Amazon.com.
The IMDb website consists of one of the largest accumulation of data about films, television programs, direct-to-video products, and video games, reaching back to each medium's respective beginning. In many cases, the information goes beyond simple title or press credits to include complete cast and crew credits, uncredited personnel, production and distribution companies, plot summaries, memorable quotes, awards, reviews, box office performance, filming locations, technical specs, promotional content, trivia, and links to official and other websites. Furthermore, the IMDb tracks titles in production, including major announced projects still in development. The database also houses filmographies for all persons, cast and crew, identified in listed titles. Filmographies include biographical details, awards listings, external links, and information about other professional work not covered by title entries in the database such as theatrical and commercial advertising appearances. The IMDb also offers ancillary material such as daily movie and TV news, weekly box office reports, TV listings, cinema showtimes, user polls and ratings, and special features about various movie events such as the Academy Awards. The website also has an active message board system. There are message boards for each database entry, found at the bottom of each respective page, as well as general discussion boards on various topics.
All of the basic database information is available without registration and without providing any personal information. However, to submit information, to use the message boards, to search for information about adult movies or to use some other of the site's features requires registration. Some advanced features require verification which can sometimes require some personal financial information such as credit card details. IMDb has 57 million visitors, 17 million of which are registered users, as of October 10, 2007.
Database content is largely provided and updated by a cadre of volunteer contributors; although 20 members of the IMDb staff are dedicated to monitoring received data.
For automated queries, most of the database can be downloaded as compressed plain text files and the information can be extracted using the tools provided, typically using a command line interface.
In 2002, the IMDb spun off a private, subscription-funded for profit site, IMDbPro, offering the entire content of the database plus additional information for business professionals, such as personnel contact details, titles in development, movie event calendars, and a greater range of industry news.
In 2006, IMDb introduced its "Résumé subscription service", where actors and crew can post their own résumé and upload photos of themselves for a yearly fee. IMDb résumé pages are kept separately from the regular entry about that person, but a regular entry is automatically created for each résumé subscriber who does not already have one.
In 2007, IMDb began offering profiles for fictional characters to show what media they are featured in.
- ↑ "Meet the staff". IMDb. Retrieved on 2007-06-07.
- ↑ "Alternate Interfaces". IMDb. Retrieved on 2007-01-15.
- ↑ Lycos Europe and IMDb sign sales agreement for 9 European markets. Lycos Europe press release, July 10, 2006
- ↑ IMDb Resume FAQ: Can I subscribe only for one month or one year? (accessed January 22, 2008)
- ↑ IMDb Resume FAQ: Is there any difference between a regular IMDb name page and an IMDb name page created via IMDb Resume? (accessed January 22, 2008)