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Without withoutabox

November 15, 2013

To give everyone time to watch “Starring: Rachel Miller,” I thought I’d post this link I got emailed today.

The unfortunately-named website is Withoutaboxsucks, and they are what you think they are. I posted my own feelings about Withoutabox a while back, primarily that it’s a great service, but a terrible website.

It seems that WAB may have some less-than-fantastic business practices towards other startups who might try to de-throne them. They take a decent cut of the money festivals rake in (how ethical festival fees are is a subject for another day…), and provide an up-to-date website for 1998.

But I don’t care much for the language of withoutaboxsucks – anytime someone starts screaming about a business killing competition and stealing from artists, I tend to classify it in the 99% of the time when the people screaming are really complaining that they have a poor/non-existent business plan, and whoever they think is evil does have a business plan, one that works. That’s not evil, that’s smart.

That said, I believe I’ve also used the phrase “withoutabox sucks” once or twice. I just wish these guys were a little less extremist about it. WAB does need to greatly update their website so it doesn’t run… so… very… slow, and so that when I search for a festival, that festival actually comes up in the search results. Many is the time I’ve searched a festival by name, gotten no results (or other results), then went to the festival’s web page and clicked the WAB link and found them. By many times, I mean maybe 1/3rd of the time. How do you get a title search wrong? By not updating your website, seemingly ever.

That said, WAB is the home of 96% of film festivals world wide. Everyone goes there, and it’s a valuable service. I remember what it was like when you had to put your film’s info into 100 different forms and websites. This is better. Unfortunately.

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