Home / Mobile / Fandango adds new features to highlight health precautions and distancing in movie theaters

Fandango adds new features to highlight health precautions and distancing in movie theaters


Fandango adds new features to highlight health precautions and distancing in movie theaters – TechCrunch

As movie theaters reopen across the United States and the world, there are lingering questions about what kinds of measures those theaters will be taking to keep staff and moviegoers safe in the midst of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

These concerns were illustrated last week, when AMC CEO Adam Aron said in an interview that the theater chain would not be requiring that patrons wear masks except in locations where they’re legally required to do so — because the company “did not want to be drawn into a political controversy.” Naturally, those comments prompted a controversy of their own, leading AMC to reverse its decision.

So it makes sense for NBCUniversal-owned movie ticketing app Fandango to highlight the different safety measures that theaters are taking.

It’s useful from an informational perspective, so that moviegoers understand and prepare for the experience in theaters, and perhaps choose theaters based on how serious they seem about safety. But it’s also a savvy marketing move, as those theaters will need to convince moviegoers that it’s safe to return.

Fandango social distance seating

Image Credits: Fandango

The new features include what Fandango is pitching as a “one-stop shop” to view the safety measures announced by more than 100 theater chains, with information about auditorium occupancy, social distance seating, mask/protective equipment policies, enhanced cleaning measures and special concession arrangements. There will also be instructional videos, social distance seating maps and a way to search for reopened theaters by location.

Because movie theaters have been closed for the past few months, Fandango also says it will be extending for another 60 days expired rewards from its Fandango VIP+ loyalty programs.

“We are working closely with our friends in exhibition to help get their ticketing back online and film fans back in seats with peace of mind,” said Melissa Heller, Fandango’s vice president of domestic ticketing, in a statement. “In addition to our new product features, Fandango’s mobile ticketing will be an added benefit, helping moviegoers and cinema employees reduce the number of contact points at the box office and throughout the theater.”

Update: In response to my question about whether moviegoers should feel safe going back to theaters, the company sent me the following statement from Fandango managing editor Erik Davis:

Let’s face it, there’s nothing like watching a movie on the big screen, and some movies like ‘Tenet’ and ‘Mulan’ beg to be seen on the biggest screen available, so there’s definitely a demand. Moviegoing decisions are personal: which movie, which format, which theater are you going to see it in. And now with health & safety protocols different for each state, county or theater chain, it’s useful to know what the theaters are offering before you go. Fandango is gathering all the info in one place to help fans return to the movies with peace of mind, and at the right time that is best for them.

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Weu2019re less than a month away from launching TC Early Stage 2020, our interactive online bootcamp, that runs July 21-22. Donu2019t miss out on more than 50 expert-led workshops focused on the core subjects every early-stage startup founder needs to ace. But hold up u2014 today is your last chance to score an early-bird deal. 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to open a game studio”,”content”:{“rendered”:”

With the game industry booming, more entrepreneurs are evaluating where to base their new startup or open a new office for their existing company. The U.S. government’s block on H1-B and L-1 visas will encourage American game startups to add an office abroad much sooner than they otherwise would have. But where?n

This spring, I surveyed a number of gaming-focused VCs about which cities are the best hubs for game studios targeting the Western games market. Several locales stood out as heavily recommended u2014 which Iu2019ve shared below u2014 but the most interesting takeaway was the lack of consensus.n

Game studios are far less geographically concentrated than other categories of VC-backed startups. While there are odes on Twitter and conference stages that u201cyou can build a successful startup anywhere,u201d most investors will push founders to locate themselves in the SF Bay Area, or at least in LA, NYC or London. Meanwhile, the most common piece of advice from those I spoke to: You should probably not base a gaming startup in the San Francisco Bay Area.n

Access to the right talent is the top priority, as is the ability to retain them. Proximity to investors matters, but a successful game quickly turns a profit, which reduces the need for outside funding beyond Series A (and U.S. and European VCs who focus on gaming tend to be very international in scope). Quality of life, ease of obtaining visas and access to strategic partners all play into the decision as well and will weigh these recommendations differently depending on who you are and the games youu2019re developing.n

Three notes:n

    n

  • I focused on qualitative research, gauging the assessments of top investors who track new startups in the sector about where the action is right now.u00a0n
  • The scope of this survey is limited to studios targeting the Western gaming market, so leading hubs in Asia werenu2019t included.n
  • I group cities by metropolitan area so, for example, San Francisco includes Redwood City and Seattle includes Bellevue.nn

    North American

    In North America, Los Angeles is the clear favorite with Montreal, Seattle, San Francisco, Toronto and Vancouver all receiving many endorsements as the other top hubs. Regarding cities with the most interesting gaming startups recently, Ryann Lai of Makers Fund said, u201cIt is hard to name a single best location, but Toronto, Culver City (in Los Angeles), Orange County (next to Los Angeles) have gotten increasingly popular among gaming founders lately.u201d



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