I recently registered for both ScreenTribe and Get Glue, the entertainment-based social network sites. I immediately started using them every single day. (What can I say, I watch a lot of movies!) Both have similar basic formats and both utilize basic gaming mechanics to engage users and incentivize frequent usage. I find I log into Get Glue more than twice as often as ScreenTribe and stay on for much longer periods. This made me want to investigate the reasons why more thoroughly.
ScreenTribe is much younger than Get Glue, having been launched earlier this year. You “tune-in” when you’re watching a movie or TV show and taking a cue from Twitter, ScreenTribe tells you which programs and movies are “trending” on the site. The points that you earn can get you prizes such as free movie tickets from Fandango, gift certificates from Amazon and charitable donations to such organizations as Livestrong. Tune-ins earn you badges as well, you can refer friends for extra points and integrate your Twitter and Facebook accounts. Of course there is the all important leaderboard on the homepage to show you where you stand with your friends. The community page shows you what people are watching right now.
Get Glue has been around for about a year and has already gained a lot of recognition and followers. While you can check-in to movies and TV shows, Get Glue also allows you to do the same for music, books, games and a plethora of other topics. You can peruse around the site and “like” or “dislike” titles or add them to your list of favorites to make check-ins easier. Get Glue gives you recommendations based on what you like and keeps a constant (and I mean constant) stream of the activities of your friends. Get Glue also has a tool bar that can be added to your web browser which you to “like” items through partner sites such as IMDB and Wikipedia. People with the most popular reviews can become “Guru” of a topic or program This allows you special privileges like updating the item’s page description, photo and adding your own expert recommendations that will be shown to other viewers who check-in. Get Glue also has stickers and ever offer special ones for checking into promoted items.
The reason for Get Glue’s success is evident. There’s plenty to do on the site to keep you clicking and a lot of social interaction to keep you competitive.”We measure success by growth of social entertainment taste graph. Every time when users rate or check-in we grow a unique data set about how people connect and consume entertainment today.” said Get Glue CEO Alex Iskold “Stickers are very fun and very viral…People feel a need to share and discuss the entertainment they consume, this is just the way we are wired. Stickers facilitate conversations, spread GetGlue and partner brands in a way that is simple and human.”
I would like to see ScreenTribe use a broader selection of media you can tune into. Screens aren’t only for TVs and movie theaters. What if your computer screen were included to allow you to tune into YouTube or Vimeo clips or even check into popular websites? ScreenTribe offers points with inevitable prizes but in order to get a $10 Fandango ticket, you need to accrue 7520 points. At 5 or 10 points per tune in, most users would find this prize unattainable. And since the selection of media is more limited it takes longer to earn points and get badges. On Get Glue, the goals are easier to shoot for and make users feel more accomplished. Plus, after unlocking 15 stickers, users can have real stickers mailed to them to show off IRL. “And the future holds more tangible rewards,” says Iskold. “HBO is already giving $50 gift card to the Guru of True Blood and other brands will shortly be offering similar rewards as well.”
Both Get Glue and ScreenTribe have apps for the iPhone, iPad and Android. However, as a non-smartphone user, I’d like to see an SMS option added. Since neither site is location-based one might think this option unnecessary. But what if you’re seeing a movie at a theater or at a friend’s house watching TV? I was sad to have missed out on my Walking Dead premiere sticker for Halloween on Get Glue, but I was watching at a party and didn’t want to disrupt things by asking my hostess to borrow her laptop so I can get my check-in points!
Minor criticisms aside, I really enjoy the way both sites engage the user with and bring more fun to my regular entertainment. The use of game mechanics turns watching movies or enjoying music into a treasure hunt.
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