MoviePass' sole purpose was to be so disruptive to the traditional movie theater market that it would die from it. A bunch of rich tech bros bought movie tickets and, essentially, scalped them for way less than their value. It was fun, till 3 million people decided to use it, too. Then, the business model built on hopes and dreams started to crumble to reveal the hamsters on wheels that powered it. The company is dead now, and you can buy its corpse for only $250,000.
The top brass never had a clue what they were doing ... or maybe they did and giving away movie tickets for dirt cheap for a short time out of the goodness of their hearts was the intended goal. It wasn't, but if I were them, that's the lie I'd tell to make myself seem like a hero when, in actuality, I was just historically bad at business. MoviePass was terrible at cultivating customer loyalty and proved it by scamming their users left and right to try to stay afloat. That makes the fact that they aren't selling user data as part of the deal doubly impressive. That could have something to do with how their user's data is probably worthless since a security breach put it all out there in the open. So, it's likely not so much they have an ethical duty to not treat their users' movie-watching habits like the remaining stock of water beds at mattress store's Going Out Of Business sale as much as they have no choice.
Looking back on the company's history, it's amazing they didn't tank sooner. Bringing MoviePass to the masses required the assembly of an Avengers-like squad of hucksters whose failures rocketed them up the corporate ladder. The most notable among them was a guy named Ted Farnsworth, MoviePass's former chairman. He's the kind of rich person who's somehow still loaded despite everything he touches turning to dust and being carried away into the sea on a breeze. When a vital part of your corporate hierarchy used to run LaToya Jackson's failed psychic hotline, you have to wonder if maybe he's got issues with foresight.
Luis can be found on Twitter and Facebook. Catch him on the "In Broad Daylight" podcast with Cracked alums Adam Tod Brown and Ian Fortey! Check out his regular contributions to Macaulay Culkin's BunnyEars.com and his "Meditation Minute" segments on the Bunny Ears podcast. Listen to the first episode on Youtube!
Top Image: Krsts Luhaers/Upsplash