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Bug or MASSIVE IMDb change?

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Bug or MASSIVE IMDb change?

#401

Post by bal3x » December 14th, 2017, 2:07 am

AdamH on Dec 13 2017, 06:50:38 PM wrote:
bal3x on Dec 13 2017, 06:47:55 PM wrote:
flaiky on Dec 12 2017, 05:17:37 PM wrote:Needham has said that there will be more changes announced over the coming weeks. I'm scared, what else is there they can mess with? They've already altered most of their features..?

Any guesses? :ermm:
Can they remove the ratings all-together? I mean, who needs them, right? Probably takes a lot of resources to fight the bots...
I'm a bit concerned about that now too. I still use it to help find good things to watch (often the ratings are very unreliable but you get used to what to avoid).

They could probably even keep the Top 250 and just hide the ratings from the public.
Actually seeing what they've been doing recently I would not be surprized if they removed ratings.. and leave just "seen" or something since ratings also "reflect poorly on the IMDb brand".. as people above put it.. oh, well, let's see what "more changes" get announced :)

And on a side note - I believe people have come to expect too much from free services these days... honestly, IMDb is a solid database and has been very reliable with astonishing uptime, - as such it has served as an invaluable tool for all of us, but we need to accept realities as they are. Amazon owns the thing and they are entitled to do whatever they want. Sad but true.
Last edited by bal3x on December 14th, 2017, 2:10 am, edited 1 time in total.

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#402

Post by Onderhond » December 14th, 2017, 8:18 am

It would be nice to get some insights into IMDb's actual usage (and the data they're using to establish it). I think it would put things in perspective for some people here who are wondering how such decisions are made.

I can't say for sure of course (because I don't have the data myself), but voting for a film is one of IMDb's core functions. Also the average ratings of a film doesn't reflect poorly on IMDb at all, on the contrary. It's seen as a valuable and trustworthy source to many. Much more so than for example individual reviews, hence the whole metacritic/RT debacle. And it's my gut feeling that the whole list-making section is just a blip in comparison, some outlier functionality only used by a very small (though dedicated) section of their users. If your data tells you just 0.1% of your users is even aware of the fact that you can make your own list, with only 10% of that actually having made a list ever ... as a responsible site owner you have to start questioning that functionality.

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#403

Post by lynchs » December 14th, 2017, 6:37 pm

AdamH on Dec 13 2017, 06:41:26 PM wrote:Which team do you support?
Who's the best team in the world? OK OK Who was the best team in the sixties? In the entire decade? :whistling:

SL Benfica :turned: :woot: :woot:

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#404

Post by lynchs » December 14th, 2017, 6:42 pm

jdidaco probably will say Santos, Pelé, bla bla bla

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#405

Post by joachimt » December 15th, 2017, 1:03 pm

I actually found an improvement in IMDb-lists! :o
Well, it's more like they solved a bug which has been there for years. Director names with symbols on letters like é or ï of ô were always displayed incorrectly. Now that problem has finally been solved, so no need to correct director-names anymore in poll-results!! :banana:
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#406

Post by PeacefulAnarchy » December 15th, 2017, 5:14 pm

joachimt on Dec 15 2017, 06:03:12 AM wrote:I actually found an improvement in IMDb-lists! :o
Well, it's more like they solved a bug which has been there for years. Director names with symbols on letters like é or ï of ô were always displayed incorrectly. Now that problem has finally been solved, so no need to correct director-names anymore in poll-results!! :banana:
I mentioned that earlier, they changed character encoding from UTF-8 to ISO-8859-1. This may be convenient for us since ICM also exports that way, but it's actually a step against current trends and not really an improvement.

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#407

Post by GruesomeTwosome » December 15th, 2017, 5:34 pm

joachimt on Dec 15 2017, 06:03:12 AM wrote:I actually found an improvement in IMDb-lists! :o
Well, it's more like they solved a bug which has been there for years. Director names with symbols on letters like é or ï of ô were always displayed incorrectly. Now that problem has finally been solved, so no need to correct director-names anymore in poll-results!! :banana:
Hmm, well honestly that gets a big "I don't give a shit"/"re-arranging the deck chairs on the sinking Titanic" from me, considering all of the more important user functionality they've done away with... :ermm:
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#408

Post by OldAle1 » December 15th, 2017, 5:55 pm

At this point I'd expect them to ditch reviews altogether within the next 6 months, or else force them into Twitter-length. Presumably they like what they've done to Amazon "reviews" so that's the model. "I liked it, it was awesome" or "that sucked, only dumb b**ches would like it" - those are perfect from their perspective. And unfortunately, having worked in video stores for a decade from 1987-97 I can tell you that the vast majority of consumers don't want anything more sophisticated than that. "Give me your best comedy that came out today" was the most common request and it was like pulling teeth to get people to actually think about what they were asking for. So I see real reviews as very endangered on any big for-profit website.

As to ratings, I think they will continue to have some kind of ratings, but I would also expect them to de-personalize those as much as possible; maybe just a like/dislike, and remove ratings histories from view; you could still "vote" on a film but there would be no visible record of it for you or anybody else, you'd only be able to access it by clicking on the individual title. Given how large the percentages are that vote 9/10 or 1/2 I think this is the obvious next step.

I expect they'll ditch lists altogether before long as well. If the site is just numbers next to movies, and celebrity "news" that's probably what they believe (rightly or wrongly) most people use it for anyway, and given that they are doing everything purely in the pursuit of profit, it's not surprising.

And none of this is surprising, unfortunately, and the only way we'll ever have a really great film site long-term that combines information, good writing, and good user interaction is to take it out of capitalism's hands. It's got to be something that is not made for profit, or that is communally owned, because 1000-word reviews and long forum posts and interesting trivia and games just aren't part of the profit game-plan for multi-billion dollar multinational corporations that are most intent on getting the dollars of Star Wars and X-Men freak 13-year-olds.
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#409

Post by monk-time » December 16th, 2017, 2:04 pm

insomnius on Dec 13 2017, 06:22:38 AM wrote:I have my viewing preference set to reference view, but today I'm getting the standard look when viewing name pages. I can still see the reference view if I manually change the URL, but who knows for how long. Yay, more "improvements". :pinch:
Not for long:
Col Needham on wrote:The name reference view is no longer available, sorry. For background please see https://getsatisfaction.com/imdb/topics ... man1opd5q0

The name reference view is basically the old view of IMDb name pages which was last updated in 2010. It is unsupported, full of bugs, runs 24-36 hours behind the rest of the site, and lacks any of the features launched in the last 7+ years. It is not recommended for general use. Our agreement back in 2010 was that we would allow reference view to continue as long as the software powering it was still running (and we would make no updates to the view itself). We expected this agreement to last a year at most, the fact it has lasted over 7 years is a happy or unhappy accident, depending upon your point of view. Unhappy in our case.

A heads-up on title reference view whose days are similarly and severely numbered. We will, however, continue to support an updated version of the "combined" title view (selected via the "Always display full cast and crew credits" option) which will be re-implemented on the new technology platform with a comparable design and features (but without the old bugs and delayed updates). This should launch before the end of the year which marks the deadline for the full and final switch-off of the old (early 2000s era) IMDb software.
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#410

Post by AdamH » December 16th, 2017, 2:59 pm

Seriously, they are getting rid of reference view? I hate the new view :'(

I guess I'll keep using IMDb but if they get rid of ratings then I'll no longer really use it. Feels like they are gradually removing every feature that makes the site worthwhile for me.

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#411

Post by bal3x » December 16th, 2017, 3:01 pm

Honestly, I'm actually surprized they kept that reference view for so long...

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#412

Post by flaiky » December 16th, 2017, 3:19 pm

AdamH on Dec 16 2017, 07:59:45 AM wrote:Seriously, they are getting rid of reference view? I hate the new view :'(

I guess I'll keep using IMDb but if they get rid of ratings then I'll no longer really use it. Feels like they are gradually removing every feature that makes the site worthwhile for me.
I made an account on Letterboxd the other day, and I think I'm officially going to switch there. Reference view isn't an issue for me but imdb had pissed me off in other ways, and now that I look properly at Letterboxd I think it's definitely preferable. The functionality is better (once you've learnt your way around), it looks nice, it has more opportunities for interaction, and the users are more serious about film (look at their top 250 compared to imdb's). All ratings and lists can be easily imported for free.

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#413

Post by monk-time » December 16th, 2017, 3:49 pm

I don't think it is reasonable to see malicious intent behind all these recent IMDb changes. The announcement that preceded them that nobody seems to take at face value gave me a different vibe. My speculation is that IMDb sits on several layers of incredibly dated code that has rotten to a point where every minor change starts to cost way too much time and effort, and that their dev team is understaffed and overstretched. I wouldn't be surprised if their actual devs can be counted on one hand, and most of their effort last couple of years went into mobile apps.

They launched in 1990, had a major redesign when they archived "reference view" (it still works, which is IMO absurd and just a resource drain) in 2011 and modernized it slightly two years ago with a different header. With the exception of a fancy popup menu to add/remove a movie from your lists that came with that, the rest hasn't changed *at all* since 2011, especially the parts that are getting a facelift with an axe right now.

Of course, it is possible to sneakily keep backend up-to-date without any changes in the interface, but it costs so much extra effort that I am sure they didn't went that road. Another approach would be to leave a couple of devs on maintenance and allow them to add minor features and make small non-disruptive improvements here and there while they keep technical debt at bay, and many devs would love to do just that, but no company larger than a basement would allow that either. What's left for mid-size not purely IT companies like IMDb for projects that "ain't broke" is not even maintenance, it's "douse the fires when they break out with the smallest amount of water possible".

So in this light and despite all the corporate speak in their recent announcements, I do believe Col Needham when he says that they want to "accelerate product development" and bring removed features back later. Whether it would actually happen is another question. It is worrying that they are pushing so many changes so quickly, as it speaks of rushed deadlines. I can vividly imagine a dev a few months ago giving their estimation of how long it would take to port all features to the new UI, and a manager on some level responding with an e-mail with a picture of portions of a page marked with rectangles that should be removed to meet the deadline.

I'd say it's 5% chance that they will deliver a better list-filtering system that will blow the old one out of the water and 20% of them getting close to parity by spring.
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#414

Post by OldAle1 » December 18th, 2017, 1:23 am

Couple of things I noticed today:

First, you can't check box office (which also sometimes includes budget) anymore. There's still a link for it, but it doesn't work. Not a big deal to me but just another thing that's gone, at least for now.

Second, I just notice a whole heckuva lot of big date changes. Most of this is for obscure stuff, shorts, etc, but all of the ones I've seen are clearly wrong now, or at least they are listed only on IMDb with these dates and listed differently elsewhere. Some examples

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0052031/combined - was 1958, now 1962; part of this film appears in a 1961 film, Godard's Un femme est un femme

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0057466/combined - was 1963, now 1971

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0830211/combined - was 1993, now 2006

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0126972/combined - was 1990, now 1994


These are huge enough changes that I wonder if there's been a policy change at the site, in particular regarding short films, videos, TV.
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#415

Post by monk-time » December 18th, 2017, 1:31 am

OldAle1 on Dec 17 2017, 06:23:26 PM wrote:First, you can't check box office (which also sometimes includes budget) anymore. There's still a link for it, but it doesn't work. Not a big deal to me but just another thing that's gone, at least for now.
Are you talking about the reference view? It's still there on the modern view, but they removed a dedicated page for it:

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#416

Post by Fergenaprido » December 18th, 2017, 2:50 pm

OldAle1 on Dec 17 2017, 06:23:26 PM wrote:Couple of things I noticed today:

First, you can't check box office (which also sometimes includes budget) anymore. There's still a link for it, but it doesn't work. Not a big deal to me but just another thing that's gone, at least for now.

Second, I just notice a whole heckuva lot of big date changes. Most of this is for obscure stuff, shorts, etc, but all of the ones I've seen are clearly wrong now, or at least they are listed only on IMDb with these dates and listed differently elsewhere. Some examples

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0052031/combined - was 1958, now 1962; part of this film appears in a 1961 film, Godard's Un femme est un femme

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0057466/combined - was 1963, now 1971

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0830211/combined - was 1993, now 2006

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0126972/combined - was 1990, now 1994


These are huge enough changes that I wonder if there's been a policy change at the site, in particular regarding short films, videos, TV.
It looks like those 4 films didn't have proper release dates that corresponded to the year that was indicated. It used to be that you could add a film and indicate the year without adding a release date; perhaps they've disallowed that, so any films existing had their years revert to the earliest release date recorded on imdb. I'm sure if you add a release date for the correct year (and they only require year and country, you don't need to know the exact date), then the dates will change.

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#417

Post by monk-time » December 19th, 2017, 11:19 am

"Your Lists" page has been updated too.
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#418

Post by Fergenaprido » December 19th, 2017, 2:05 pm

monk-time on Dec 19 2017, 04:19:02 AM wrote:"Your Lists" page has been updated too.
I don't know what imdb has against compact displays... le sigh. I'm hoping it's something they'll bring back after they clean up the code, but it's probably wishful thinking.

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#419

Post by monk-time » December 19th, 2017, 3:08 pm

Fergenaprido on Dec 19 2017, 07:05:59 AM wrote:I don't know what imdb has against compact displays
Thankfully making a different layout for a site is not that complicated nowadays with very powerful dev tools built into any browser and extensions like Stylus that allow you to write custom CSS for any website. I imagine it's just a matter of time before such a "userstyle" for a compact view appears.
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#420

Post by bal3x » December 19th, 2017, 4:59 pm

monk-time on Dec 19 2017, 08:08:09 AM wrote:
Fergenaprido on Dec 19 2017, 07:05:59 AM wrote:I don't know what imdb has against compact displays
Thankfully making a different layout for a site is not that complicated nowadays with very powerful dev tools built into any browser and extensions like Stylus that allow you to write custom CSS for any website. I imagine it's just a matter of time before such a "userstyle" for a compact view appears.
Are you willing to make an effort? Your Clutter-less extension is priceless :)

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#421

Post by Fergenaprido » December 19th, 2017, 6:27 pm

bal3x on Dec 19 2017, 09:59:34 AM wrote:
monk-time on Dec 19 2017, 08:08:09 AM wrote:
Fergenaprido on Dec 19 2017, 07:05:59 AM wrote:I don't know what imdb has against compact displays
Thankfully making a different layout for a site is not that complicated nowadays with very powerful dev tools built into any browser and extensions like Stylus that allow you to write custom CSS for any website. I imagine it's just a matter of time before such a "userstyle" for a compact view appears.
Are you willing to make an effort? Your Clutter-less extension is priceless :)
Hmm, it's been years since I used CSS; not sure how one would go about creating a compact userstyle using it, but hopefully someone will rise to the task.

And I didn't realize we had you, monk, to thank for the clutterless extension. Many thanks indeed!


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#423

Post by Carmel1379 » December 20th, 2017, 2:04 am

RIP.

I like how they disabled options like adding films to ones watchlist from the reference view to push people into clicking the "change view" link that takes you directly to your account settings...
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#424

Post by PeacefulAnarchy » December 20th, 2017, 2:10 am

I'm actually ok with the new reference view, though removing the link to the score breakdown is really petty since it's just a plain link.

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#425

Post by OldAle1 » December 20th, 2017, 2:13 am

PeacefulAnarchy on Dec 19 2017, 07:10:25 PM wrote:I'm actually ok with the new reference view, though removing the link to the score breakdown is really petty since it's just a plain link.
The 13-year-old boy on his smartphone who has only seen/heard of 100 movies, all made in the last 3 years, who is the primary demographic that is valued by IMDb, doesn't give a shit.
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#426

Post by PeacefulAnarchy » December 20th, 2017, 2:16 am

But that boy isn't using the reference view and the score breakdown page link is still there in the normal view. They also revamped that page http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0468569/ratings so it's not like they're deprecating the page, just not giving those on ref view the link.

The new people pages are garbage, btw.

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#427

Post by Good_Will_Harding » December 20th, 2017, 4:23 am

Holy mother of Christ, the new page layouts/designs for the films and people are cluttered and ugly as shit. One more in an ever growing list of reasons to click back to IMDB fewer and fewer now.

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#428

Post by sol » December 20th, 2017, 5:08 am

LOL. I love how on the new pages it actually says "Reference View". :lol: No, this is NOT reference view -- or at least not the reference view that we are all used to.
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#429

Post by joachimt » December 20th, 2017, 8:11 am

Now you have to click twice to rate a movie? :(
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#430

Post by Armoreska » December 20th, 2017, 10:50 am

joachimt on Dec 20 2017, 01:11:37 AM wrote:Now you have to click twice to rate a movie? :(
must be to make sure you're not rating anything by accident -_-
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#431

Post by xianjiro » December 20th, 2017, 1:21 pm

PeacefulAnarchy on Dec 19 2017, 07:10:25 PM wrote:I'm actually ok with the new reference view, though removing the link to the score breakdown is really petty since it's just a plain link.
yeah, I started using it and am dealing with it - it's not as terrible as what I've been confronted with prior (when not using ref view). even made a list today and yes, reordering was a bit clunky even with just over 30 titles but otherwise it worked okay

idk, might even turn off ref view altogether

oh, one thing that I'm having better luck with since the forced changes: I can filter an actor's filmography based on rated/not rated. I never was able to get this type of search to work on the old ref view 'system'. So that's a positive for me. :thumbsup:

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#432

Post by Fergenaprido » December 20th, 2017, 1:22 pm

joachimt on Dec 20 2017, 01:11:37 AM wrote:Now you have to click twice to rate a movie? :(
It's been like that for a while in the main view. Annoying at first, but I adjusted pretty quickly and now don't even think about it.

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#433

Post by xianjiro » December 20th, 2017, 1:24 pm

Armoreska on Dec 20 2017, 03:50:31 AM wrote:
joachimt on Dec 20 2017, 01:11:37 AM wrote:Now you have to click twice to rate a movie? :(
must be to make sure you're not rating anything by accident -_-
yeah, you have to open the rating 'appliance' (not sure what it should be called) before you can select the number of star - it's kind of like the ... button in iCM v3 after performing a search

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#434

Post by Armoreska » December 20th, 2017, 1:36 pm

other than the rating, the new view is fine by me at 1st glance. the ratings link is on the right sidebar, just scroll
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viewtopic.php?f=1&t=1434
and "Gordon" Liu Chia-Hui/Liu Chia-Liang and Yuen Woo-ping and "Sammo" Hung Kam-bo

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#435

Post by joachimt » December 22nd, 2017, 10:34 pm

Why is the title of a movie on its movie-page a clickable link? The link just links to the same page. Seems unnecessary.

I often copy the title from there (to put the original title in my spreadsheet of movies for example) and now I accidentally click on it.
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#436

Post by albajos » December 22nd, 2017, 10:49 pm

joachimt on Dec 22 2017, 03:34:57 PM wrote:Why is the title of a movie on its movie-page a clickable link? The link just links to the same page. Seems unnecessary.

I often copy the title from there (to put the original title in my spreadsheet of movies for example) and now I accidentally click on it.
It links to the reference page, so it's fast to get back from all the other subpages. But yes, they could have removed the one on the actual reference page.

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joachimt
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#437

Post by joachimt » December 22nd, 2017, 10:52 pm

albajos on Dec 22 2017, 03:49:43 PM wrote:
joachimt on Dec 22 2017, 03:34:57 PM wrote:Why is the title of a movie on its movie-page a clickable link? The link just links to the same page. Seems unnecessary.

I often copy the title from there (to put the original title in my spreadsheet of movies for example) and now I accidentally click on it.
It links to the reference page, so it's fast to get back from all the other subpages. But yes, they could have removed the one on the actual reference page.
Ah, I didn't realize that. I'm already on reference by default, so when I click it, it's completely pointless.
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#438

Post by xianjiro » December 23rd, 2017, 1:16 am

joachimt on Dec 22 2017, 03:52:40 PM wrote:
albajos on Dec 22 2017, 03:49:43 PM wrote:
joachimt on Dec 22 2017, 03:34:57 PM wrote:Why is the title of a movie on its movie-page a clickable link? The link just links to the same page. Seems unnecessary.

I often copy the title from there (to put the original title in my spreadsheet of movies for example) and now I accidentally click on it.
It links to the reference page, so it's fast to get back from all the other subpages. But yes, they could have removed the one on the actual reference page.
Ah, I didn't realize that. I'm already on reference by default, so when I click it, it's completely pointless.
Yeah, I noticed that as well - one just has to be a bit more skilled with the select and copy, but it still works.

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blueboybob
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#439

Post by blueboybob » December 23rd, 2017, 10:23 pm

Can't even load my ratings page anymore. Just 500 error.

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#440

Post by PeacefulAnarchy » December 23rd, 2017, 10:34 pm

I'm sure no one else cares about this, because few knew it existed, but before when you sorted lists by rating it would actually sort them by rating even when imdb ratings were the "same" (i.e. it went down to the decimals that aren't shown), now it uses the same sorting as advanced search where "tied" movies are sorted by popularity score.

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