The Internet Movie Database, or Imdb, has become a classic example of a hobby that turns out to be a powerful media asset - but its "convergence moment" may soon be at hand according to studio executives who have worked on developing a download service that would let people burn DVDs on their desktops, writes the New York Times. Though Amazon, which acquired Imbd in 1998, and Imdb founder Col Needham declined to talk about plans, Imdb seems set to play a more prominent role in the media strategy of Amazon. Paramount Pictures, Universal Studios and Warner Brothers are involved in the project, executives close to the project have said.
Imdb is ranked as the 10th-most-popular entertainment spot online by ComScore Media Metrix with 18.6 million unique visitors in April. A web search on the title of virtually any past movie or TV show or the names of celebrities almost alwaysleads to an Imdb link at the top of the search results page.
Imdb makes money from advertising, selling publicity photos, licensing its content, selling movie tickets through partners and offering a premium Imdb Pro service (started in 2002). It has become a directory of most everyone in show business, from key grips to producers, actors and directors.