The launch of IMDb
One of the most popular websites ever, IMDb celebrates its 24th anniversary today! And who could imagine watching a TV programme or film without it?
Whether you use it to research a potential film to see at the cinema, help you understand just what exactly happened in the mind bending film you’ve just watched, or simply to review your own favourite films or series, it is almost 100% guaranteed that everyone at some time or other, has visited the IMBd site.
According to stats, IMBd has over 100 million unique users each month and its mobile presence continues to grow from strength to strength.
History of IMDb:
A list of films originally started way before 17th Oct 1990 was created and maintained by a growing group of film fanatics who used a Usenet group to populate the list. At this early stage, the list contained; actors and actress credits, directors information as well as any biographical information that was around, known as “the ‘dead’ list”
However, on 17th Oct 1990, it was all changed – for the better, of course. Founder Col Needham, wrote a long series of Unix shell scripts which enabled the list to be searchable – a function that is still at the heart of the IMDb experience. Being able to search the lists made it more meaningful and useful to users and also the people whose job it was to maintain and expand the information further.
Although the name wasn’t up and running that that point, the Internet Movie Database was off the ground.
In September 1993, the site was launched and was also the first ever site live on the internet that was dedicated to movies. For the next five years, the lists of movies and all of their information grew and grew, and were served off university computers and mirrors, much like the ones that are at Cardiff University, Wales.
Using a centralised email submission interface, the site continued to grow and develop.
In 1995, the demands of the size of the project hit home with Col, and he quit his job to take IMDb to the next level. The first server for the site was paid for on Cols credit card and the company was legitimately born!
1998 was another Steller year, with traffic to the site and submission growing all of the time, so much so that all of the volunteer staff, who were unpaid at the paint, were snowed under with submissions for the site – however, they carried on ploughing through, they knew they were art of something big.
And all of the hard work from the volunteers, Col and everyone else involved was not going unnoticed. Jeff Bezos, founder of Amazon.com brought the site which therefore allowed Col to pay his volunteer staff for their monumental efforts in getting IMDb so far.
And that is the history of the phenomenon that is IMDb – the site just keeps on improving and growing, from strength to strength.
So, we would like to know – what do you use IMDb for?