by Mike Masnick
Thu, Jul 30th 2009 7:28pm
Remember back when you used to check the local newspaper for movie listings? To be honest, I can barely remember when that happened. These days, it's just easier to look up the info online. However, many newspapers apparently still print movie listings -- and apparently (I had no idea...), this is actually paid advertising by the theater chains. AMC Theatres, however, is realizing that most people now get movie times online and has pulled its listings from the Washington Post (via Romenesko), leading some readers to believe, incorrectly, that the Post had dropped the listings (similar to the way many newspapers have dropped stock listings). But, since this is ad revenue, the Post is actually quite upset about this, and worried that other chains might follow suit. So it's actually hoping that theater attendance will drop, and AMC will be convinced to pay for movie listings again. Of course, the data itself is factual information, and if the Washington Post really wanted to, it could print the times itself -- but, instead it clearly wants the advertising money (and to prove why it thinks AMC is making a mistake). It will be fascinating to see what happens, but I get the feeling that even if AMC is convinced to come back, it won't be long before movie theaters stop paying newspapers to print showtimes.
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