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SpeedCine Launches in Beta.

by Eric Kohn
August 4, 2009 12:48 PM
1 Comment
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PR vet Reid Rosefelt's intriguing side project, Speedcine, officially launched its beta version today (the URL has been active to showcase a "demo" version of the site since March). Although there's certainly room for it to grow, this search engine offers a unique niche that you can't really find anywhere else, as it allows users to search for film titles to see if they are available for legal viewing online. I like the simplistic interface and division of availability into various categories. However, I think it's unfortunate that you can only search for titles, considering how many of today's digitally-oriented audiences make viewing decisions on the basis of other data, such as directors, genres and other keywords. Also, it seems like Amazon VOD, Hulu and Netflix Watch Instantly are the main sites that come up for most searches. What about Jaman, The Auteurs or The YouTube Screening Room? And what about movies like We Are the Strange or Steal this Film that were voluntarily uploaded to Bittorent by their creators? Fortunately, it sounds like the library will deepen. "We currently index over 13,000 films from Netflix, Amazon VOD, Hulu, and many other sites," Rosefelt explains. "We're adding more movies every day, and will have iTunes in our system by the end of the month."

The site has potential. For now, it primarily suggests a systematic alternative to googling "Where can I watch X movie online?" and, if you have certain moral standards in place, only going with the legal options. If you are the sort of upstanding citizen inclined to follow that routine, Speedcine will make things easier for you. If not, the site is still fun to poke around, and effectively illustrates the range of movies legitimately available in the digital realm, a relatively new phenomenon if you consider what things were like ten years ago.

1 Comment

  • Reid Rosefelt | August 4, 2009 3:17 AMReply

    Hi Eric,

    Thanks for your kind words. You raise many good questions, and I'd like to address them:

    We want all the sites you mentioned and 20 others you didn't mention. But it takes weeks to fix the data for each site, and more importantly, to make them work with the data from the other sites. So we're doing it bit by bit so that the information that is in there is as accurate as we can make it, and people have a good experience when they come to the site. It's also true that many sites are waiting to see how successful we are before they will work with us. If enough people use SpeedCine, the companies will see the potential and join up. In the meantime, we'll keep busy with the companies that have already said yes, like iTunes and indiepix.

    We can't work with a company until they agree to give us some kind of feed so we can stay up-to-date.

    We will be adding a lot of features, including director search, but do be aware that SpeedCine was created by two guys in their spare time with a few thousand dollars. It might not be fair to compare us to sites that are built with millions in venture capital! :)

    But that's not really the point. Our core idea has always been not to compete with any existing site--we wanted to create something completely new and offer a service you couldn't get anywhere else.
    Our service is not for people who aren't sure what they want to see and want some assistance: our service is for people who do know what they want to see right now and want to know where to go.

    After 11 months working on this, I have not seen another site that does the same thing, including, which is very different and UK-only. We will be international.

    Please be patient. We want to have the films you mentioned just as much as you do. And if people find SpeedCine useful and support our dream, I'm sure we'll get them.

    All the best,

    Reid Rosefelt

    P.S. I sure as hell hope this doesn't stay a "side project"

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