Modellers measure ‘word of mouth’ for films

Mark Peplow in Nature:

Film_1It’s official, says one group of researchers: Blade II is a bad film. Their study turns patterns of attendance into a single number that claims to grade a film’s quality.

The number attempts to gauge of how good the ‘word of mouth’ was around a given film, based on the behaviour of the harshest critics of all, the paying public.

César Hidalgo, now a graduate student in physics at the University of Notre Dame, Indiana, and his colleagues, decided to study the ‘word of mouth’ effect in the film world simply because reviews often have a huge impact on audience numbers and there are copious data on ticket sales.

More here.