What will they think of next?

posted by CSWalczak on August 12, 2009 at 7:30 am

Just what the world needs: another “innovation” to encourage patrons to use their smartphones while watching a film.

According to this story, there is now actually a website and an iPhone application that can alert you to points in a movie where one can make a pit stop without missing anything critical in the film you are watching.

The site provides recommended opportunities to race to the restroom. It tells you when the action or romance wanes, and gives you a cue (“Baby O.J. is taken from Bruno”) for your exit.

The site tells you how long you’ve got and even summarizes what you missed. Since early July, RunPee.com is available as an iPhone app, too.

Read more at MSNBC.

Comments (11)

Chris Utley
Chris Utley on August 12, 2009 at 7:58 am

Allow me to defend this RunPee concept (as me and my film club staff are currently working on partnership oppportunities with the founder/creator of the site). RunPee DOES NOT – in any way, shape, or form – encourage or entice viewers to pop open their Blackberries & IPhones to chat/text/Tweet/etc during a movie. Instead, it merely seeks to alert moviegoers of the best time to make a run for the restroom during any given film without missing any key/major plot details. Period.

I, personally, make my pit stop as soon as I step into the theatre…but everybody ain’t like me. Besides…those 32 ounce sodas have a nasty habit of creeping up on folks midway through a flick.

HowardBHaas on August 12, 2009 at 8:00 am

More people running to the restroom at the exact moment will be disruptive.

Intermissions should return for movies over 2 and a half hours.

bob1007 on August 12, 2009 at 8:23 am

While RunPee may or may not not encourage or entice viewers to pop open their Blackberries and IPhones to chat/text/tweet/etc, its still encourages them to open the darn things which will cause distractions caused by the beacon of light they shine and will interrupt the enjoyment of the movie for everyone else. Wanna take a break from part of the movie? Here’s the solution… rent the movie when it comes out on DVD and watch it at home. There you can take all the breaks you need and use your cell phone all you want without disturbing anyone else.


GrandValleyHoldingsLP on August 12, 2009 at 9:00 am

Yet another reason I have a ZERO tolerance policy on phones and any other personal electronic devices in my theater. The blue light is rude, disruptive, and ignorant to other patrons! First of all, pirating and bootlegging costs everyone money. But above that, IT’S RUDE!

My policy has an added benefit, teen control. Teens by far are the biggest offenders of this. They all know if we see them, they are OUT, no refund, no warning. PERIOD. The result is the most disruptive customers don’t frequent my theater, allowing my target market (adults and families) have a much more enjoyable time at the show. Those who do not want to abide by my policy can go to the multiplex. That’s best for all of us! ;)

Another benefit to a single screen theater, the bathrooms are at the back of the theater, not past 18 shoeboxes and past $12 popcorn!

markp on August 12, 2009 at 9:59 pm

And those 18 shoeboxes are exactly the reason intermissions will never come back as Howard suggested. As my owner said, where do you put the people? Multiplexes have ruined everything, in this persons opinion.

MPol on August 12, 2009 at 10:21 pm

Sheesh!! Can’t people figure out on their own when to make a pitstop during a movie?

I saw Lawrence of Arabia at the Coolidge Corner Theatre last Monday night, and, since it’s an almost-4-hour movie, they did have an intermission. I never make pitstops during intermission…the line gets too long. As with any movie, I figured out what a slower part of the movie was and made a pitstop then.

movie534: of course intermissions won’t return to the average multiplex cinemas. They don’t play the kind of movies that have intermissions in them. Only in the indy/art-house movie theatres will you find movies with intermissions in them. “Dr. Zhivago”, another very long movie, also has an intermission, and, believe it or not, “West Side Story”, which is 2 ½ hours long, also used to have an intermission, but that’s not been true for a long, long time.

JohnHolloway on August 13, 2009 at 5:55 am

For heaven’s sake. If you can’t last 2-3hours without a toilet stop it’s time to get a referral to a urologist. I can’t believe audience members are unable to enjoy a movie without drinking copious amounts of soda and stuffing their mouths with food. Best wishes and continued success to you, Manager, Grand theatre PA. You obviously take a pride in the satisfaction of your audience, monitor the auditorium and enforce the rules you have set to ensure the comfort and enjoyment of your most important asset – your ticket-buying audience. If only there were more like you.

Simon Overton
Simon Overton on August 13, 2009 at 1:36 pm

WHO was it that invented a cell phone signal jamming device for cinemas, churches and libraries, etc?
I’d love to shake their hand! I also wish that ALL cinema/theater owners had the guts to install one of these machines everywhere!

I also wish EVERYONE, who will not tolerate these neurotic fools checking damned phones every five minutes, shout loud and clear “TURN IT OFF OR GET OUT”… I do, and it works!

PeterApruzzese on August 14, 2009 at 7:22 am

Simon – active cell phone jamming is illegal in the US.

TLSLOEWS on March 17, 2010 at 6:41 pm

Watch out for the cell police,I think you should have to turn your cell phone in at the theatre and get it back upon leaving,if you cannot LIVE without it for maybe 2 hours you need not go to the theatres,going to the movies has always been about getting away from everyday life.

TLSLOEWS on March 17, 2010 at 6:45 pm

Also we did not have cell phones when I grew up we were lucky to have a home phone that out parents would let us use on a limited basis.

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