Rotten Tomatoes cracking down on troll reviews ahead of Captain Marvel release

Zachary Levi Captain Marvel

Shazam! Actor Zachary Levi Addresses Fans “Review Bombing” Brie Larson’s Captain Marvel John F. Trent

In addition, Rotten Tomatoes has disabled the ability for users to post comments prior to a movie's release date.

Rotten Tomatoes is giving the green splat to moviegoers leaving bad reviews ahead of the "Captain Marvel" release. In recent years, certain users have been targeting movies such as The Last Jedi, Black Panther and, more recently, Captain Marvel, with negative reviews and comments.

Rotten Tomatoes Rotten Tomatoes screenshot from February 25. We have decided that turning off this feature for now is the best course of action. At the very least, trolls with an agenda shouldn't have a major say in that and Rotten Tomatoes is trying to do the right thing.

The big changes include that Rotten Tomatoes will no longer list a percentage for fans that "want to see" the movie (which also reveals the percent who do not want to see the movie), but simply will only show the whole number of fans that have said they do want to see the movie (see screen grabs below). In a statement, the staff explained that the "Want to See" score is frequently confused with the "Audience Score"; the latter tracks the percentage of all users who have rated a film or TV show positively. The site credited an "an uptick in non-constructive input, sometimes bordering on trolling".

Following the realization that the page was being targeted by trolls, HuffPost noticed the movie's "want to see" score, the percent of people who are interested in a movie, was also being attacked.

"Just because Shazam used to be called Captain Marvel way back in the day doesn't mean that somehow Brie or Marvel's Captain Marvel (is) pitted against us, " Levi added. "We're both movies and we're both going to be out in theaters at similar times". To combat that, the site is doing away with the "Want to See" percentage score before a film is released, in a bid to stop the impression of so-called "review bombing" where a film like Captain Marvel appeared to be panned before it was in theaters or Star Wars: Episode IX given low scores, despite the fact that film does not have a trailer or title yet. And, hey, they're also making some cosmetic changes to the site, with the aim of providing "a cleaner, less cluttered presentation of the Tomatometer and Audience Score".

In an editorial posted to Rotten Tomatoes' homepage, the website announced that it would "launch the first of several phases of updates that will refresh and modernize our Audience Rating System".

Rotten Tomatoes Rotten Tomatoes screenshot before changes.

You can read the entire Rotten Tomatoes editorial here.

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