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IMDb changes rating system for ‘The Kashmir Files’ after ‘unusual voting activity’

The Internet Movie Database (IMDb) modified the voting procedure used to determine ratings for the Hindi film ‘The Kashmir Files’ on Monday, after identifying strange voting activity on the movie review page. The film director Vivek Agnihotri has spoken out against the modification, calling it ‘unethical’.

A disclaimer on ‘The Kashmir Files’ IMDb review page says, ‘Our rating mechanism has detected unusual voting activity on this title. To preserve the reliability of our rating system, an alternate weighting calculation has been applied’.

With over 2,32,000 votes, the rating is presently 8.3/10. According to the IMDb’s Rating FAQ section, a weighted average of ratings is defined as ‘IMDb publishes weighted vote averages rather than raw data averages. The simplest way to explain it is that although we accept and consider all votes received by users, not all votes have the same impact (or ‘weight’) on the final rating.’

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It adds, ‘When unusual voting activity is detected, a different weighting calculation may be applied in order to preserve the reliability of our system. To ensure our rating mechanism remains effective, we don’t disclose the exact method used to generate the rating’.

Filmmaker Vivek Agnihotri described the new voting process as ‘unusual and unethical’ in a tweet on Monday.

The Kashmir Files is a documentary based on video interviews with first-generation victims of the 1990 genocide of Kashmiri Pandits.


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