If you’ve been to a movie theater in the past six months you know that people are insensitive to others. At least once every show you’ll probably find someone tapping away on their bright little smartphone screen.
THR and Penn Schoen Berland did a study about social media and entertainment and found that a majority of the 18 to 34 year old demographic would like to be able to use social media during a movie in a dark movie theater because they think it would increase their experience. Half of those people would be open to going to a theater that allowed texting and web surfing during the film.
However, 75% of people total said allowing phone use during a movie would be distracting and taking away from the experience. So what’s this mean? It means that young people want their public movie-going experience to match their private one. They want to be able to talk to their friends and share their thoughts with the world in real time. Not after. Not before.
Fifty five percent of people that use their phone in a theater use it for texting, 27% use Facebook and 19% make a phone call (are you serious!?).
First, let’s keep in mind that this study only questioned 750 people, so it may not be amazingly accurate. Still, the fact that the majority of the young people they questioned said they think it would improve the experience are obviously thinking about themselves.
The point of being in a dark theater with a huge screen and loud speakers is so you get lost into the movie (one of the reasons the middle of the theater is the best place to sit, you ideally want the screen to take over your entire plane of vision). So seeing little bright screens DOES detract from the experience. Your eye will naturally seek it out.
I’m sure using Twitter, Facebook or text messaging during a movie makes it more fun or entertaining but you lose out on truly experiencing the movie (how are you picking up the director’s nuances while looking down at a screen?). And of course, as mentioned before, it hurts the people around you. A theater is a public place. It should be treated like it and people should be considerate of others around them. [THR]