October 12, 2012 at 12:24 pm
by Christina Tynan-Wood
One of my family’s favorite things to do on a Friday night is stay in and watch movies with the entire family. We have projector that gives us a 100-inch screen on the wall of our small living room. We make popcorn, pick something we all agree on, and get cozy. But sometimes choosing a movie we all agree on is harder than I’d like.
Is that new movie too violent? Is it too mature for us all to watch together? Or is the subject matter suited to a 16-year-old but not a 13-year-old? These things are often difficult to determine from a preview or an MPAA rating. But, as I said in my column on tapping the collective wisdom of the cloud, I like getting help from my virtual people when faced with decisions. So when the folks who created OK.com asked if they could show me their social rating system for movies, I jumped at the chance.
The idea with OK.com is that it asks people in its community of members to rate the movies they have actually watched to tell the rest of us if a film is worth our time and what ages it is best suited to. And you can create your own community by inviting your friends, it connects easily to Facebook so you can invite your fellow movie-watching Facebook friends to join you at OK.com. The site gives you a quick-glance rating as well as in-depth reviews from other members. Those ratings more accurately reflect your values as you include more people you are likely to agree with. So when I’m looking for something to watch with my family, I can quickly see what’s a likely fit and then find out what my friends thought of it. I know these people so–even if I don’t always entirely agree with their movie choices–that knowledge leaves me better prepared to make my own decision.
Also helpful is that the site tells me what’s new on Netflix and Redbox, as well as what’s new in theaters (and has plan to add Amazon, and Hulu). Right there, that could save us some precious movie-night time that we now spend hunting for the best place (for our budget that is) to get a new movie.
I haven’t used the site to choose a movie yet. But it is Friday!
Christina Tynan-Wood writes the Family Tech column for Family Circle, and is the author of “How to Be a Geek Goddess.” You can find her at GeekGirlfriends.com, as well as here on Momster.com. Follow her on Twitter: @xtinatynanwood.