In a press release today, Warner Brothers Entertainment Group announced that they had purchased the movie-finding website/application Flixster, which includes the acquisition of the movie review website Rotten Tomatoes. It will all tie into Warner’s upcoming Digital Everywhere app, which will allow for cloud-based storage of movies and television shows. Aside from that, WB has not specifically commented on their plans for their new purchases.
While WB has assured that both Flixster and RT will remain independently operated, I can’t help but be terrified at the notion that a film studio owning one of the two review aggregator sites. It isn’t far fetched to imagine that Rotten Tomatoes might stop carrying reviews from outlets that give more consistently lower ratings to Warner Brothers movies, or that they might, behind the scenes, juke the aggregation algorithm to benefit Warner Brothers movies over others. I really can’t see WB taking advantage of their new position of power over literally every other studio in the world.
This could get rough in the coming months. What do you guys think? Can WB be trusted with an acquisition with such potential for fraud, or is this a disaster waiting to happen?[Via Deadline]