The company announced on Monday that users would be able to access the extensive library of content for free on IMDb.com including The Office, 24, Heroes, The Dark Knight and Office Space with content being provided by CBS, Hulu, Sony Pictures Television and over 500 independent filmmakers. Aside from granting access to today’s most popular shows, you can also catch old favorites like Star Trek and the first episodes of upcoming shows like 30 Rock and Knight Rider before they are officially aired.
Pretty much anyone who uses the net regularly knows about IMDb. Acquired by Amazon ten years ago, the site offers extensive information about over 1 million movies. You see a show, recognize an actor and make a mental note to IMDb it later. When something makes the transition from noun to verb, you know it’s popular. Despite the fact that IMDb does exactly what it says on the tin, discussions among users about adding video to the site have been ongoing, so yesterday’s announcement will no doubt be met with a round of applause from the IMDbers.
However, like we said, users have been hoping for this kind of service for a while so it kind of makes us wonder why they’ve only decided to incorporate videos now. We reckon it’s got something to do with ramping up sales for the e-tailer. Amazon has its own Video On Demand Service independent of what its started offering on IMDb and there’s a good reason the content available on IMDb is streamed only as opposed to download. Our guess is that Amazon hopes to increase the sales of the more popular movies on IMDb with customers purchasing movies they want to download and keep rather than just stream.
Unfortunately the service is only available in the U.S., licensing issues mean IMDbers anywhere else won’t be availing of the free streaming just yet.
Press Release: Users Can Now Watch Full-Length Movies and TV Shows for Free on IMDb.com