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Old 10-16-2012, 07:34 AM   #111
itsallgood
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Default Re: The New Black List

Quote:
Originally Posted by figment View Post
So I just went on the website and "registering" involves listing your educational background, what state you live in, twitter and facebook accounts -- which I assume will all be used as contact info.

The only problem is that I see this being a huge, huge disadvantage for writers who are not based in California. Or who aren't hugely into social media. Or who didn't go to film school, or anywhere remotely ivy league, or college at all.

It seems like any one of those things can equal being dismissed immediately in the minds of a potential reader -- readers that would've otherwise liked the script and considered it a viable project for their company. This writer isn't in L.A? Why bother? He doesn't have a facebook/twitter account? He's out of the loop, why bother? Etc...

Thoughts on this?
I would love to be able to see this type of info on the readers. They pay nothing to get this info, and we the writers pay, so doesn't it seem reasonable that we should see what credentials the *reader* has, and choose who evaluates our scripts? That would be a benefit to writers. Yes writers stand to benefit greatly from this model but so do readers so why not require some info on them.

Also, I know some "repped writers" who stumbled onto their representation making cold calls with a pitch. They know absolutely nothing about screenwriting. They came to me to help them write a feature, and I helped them map out a synopsis and lo and behold never heard from them again. I just wouldn't want anyone with an IMDb producer's credit to be able to read my script. Can we choose who gets to read it like on inktip? I guess what I'm also asking is how do you define a "repped writer"?

I do like the idea overall
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Old 10-16-2012, 09:51 AM   #112
Margie Kaptanoglu
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Default Re: The New Black List

Hi Franklin,

Thanks for launching this service, which I do believe could be a boon to screenwriters trying to break in, and thanks for making yourself so available to answer questions.

My questions relate to the coverage. If your system is to succeed in identifying the most promising screenplays, the coverage needs to be of very high quality. But this may be difficult to provide, given the volume you could be dealing with.

For example, I heard that 3777 writers signed on yesterday. Let's round up to 4000 to make the math easier. I'm sure you'll have 4000 in no time, if you don't already. Assuming it takes 2 hours to cover a script (and this is very fast, presuming the reader reads the entire script), you need 8000 hours to cover 4000 scripts that have purchased coverage. With one reader, that would take 4 years (40 hrs/wk times 52 wks/yr = 2080 working hrs in the year). With a hundred readers, it could be done in 2 weeks (80 hrs).

Making the big assumption that my math is right, I have the following questions regarding the readers who will be providing your paid coverage:

- Will they be required to read the entire script?

- What will the ratings/coverage form consist of/look like (I know others have asked this as well)?

- Are the readers salaried employees or unpaid interns?

- Do you have a large enough pool of readers at this point to handle the initial volume of scripts in a timely fashion (say, to deliver coverage in one month's time, considering the writer has to pay $25 for every month's delay)? By my calculation, the pool of readers must be at least 50 to make this happen with 4000 scripts.

- Will readers be required to have at least several years of experience, or to be tested on their ability to competently evaluate a screenplay?

Since so much depends on the rating given to submitted scripts, it would go a long way if you could reassure writers that scripts will be evaluated in their entirety by truly professional eyes.

Thank you!
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Old 10-16-2012, 11:06 AM   #113
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Default Re: The New Black List

Is there a way for us to see what the readers are looking for? What genres were searched the most? What criteria they were looking for?

Lets say I've got 5 scripts (low budget horror, sci fi, heist film, rom-com and drama) and I don't know which one to upload, is there a way I could see which one would be the most 'wanted' at any given time?
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Old 10-16-2012, 11:26 AM   #114
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Default Re: The New Black List

I apologize in advance for my Negative Nancy tone but understand this concept seems to be the next "great thing" for writers, much like Amazon studios was last year. I am skepical.

Rightly or wrongly, this is how I understand it:

1. Newbie writers will be paying a $25 monthly fee to "rent" space on a database in a new (monetized) section of your Black List website, which is accessible to, and frequented by, industry people (of all levels, I imagine).

2. To move one's script to the recommended section of this database, a writer needs to pay an additional $50 for a read and have the talent required to secure high scores (8s out of possible 10s).

3. If they do not get high scores, or if they choose not to pay extra for a read, their work falls to the bottom of the heap and the likelihood that any industry people will read their script is very, very low. However, they're welcome to continue paying the monthly fee to remain on the database albeit in virtual Siberia.

If the above is correct, I have only one question which relates to the other side of the equation: the 1000+ industry professionals who are already Black List members.

What is the likelihood these people (or their assistants?) will actually scour this new, monetized section of the website looking for scripts, on a regular basis?

Surely these are busy folks already fielding material sent to them via other channels, including the good old cold query.

Perhaps michaelb and SBScript, professionals who secure material, will answer this. How likely would you be to regularly check the New Black List for material?
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Old 10-16-2012, 11:38 AM   #115
Paul Striver
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Default Re: The New Black List

Quote:
Originally Posted by Margie Kaptanoglu View Post
I heard that 3777 writers signed on yesterday.
Read earlier in the thread. Franklin explained that the 3777 figure is all the scripts in the BL database, which goes back years. The number of newly uploaded scripts for this new service is currently "low three figures".

That said, turnaround time is a valid concern.
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Old 10-16-2012, 11:43 AM   #116
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Default Re: The New Black List

Quote:
Originally Posted by figment View Post
So I just went on the website and "registering" involves listing your educational background, what state you live in, twitter and facebook accounts -- which I assume will all be used as contact info.

The only problem is that I see this being a huge, huge disadvantage for writers who are not based in California. Or who aren't hugely into social media. Or who didn't go to film school, or anywhere remotely ivy league, or college at all.

It seems like any one of those things can equal being dismissed immediately in the minds of a potential reader -- readers that would've otherwise liked the script and considered it a viable project for their company. This writer isn't in L.A? Why bother? He doesn't have a facebook/twitter account? He's out of the loop, why bother? Etc...

Thoughts on this?
Living in LA has less to do with how people perceive you, and more to do with your opportunities. If you're not in LA, you can't network and take meetings, and that can be an issue. However, it doesn't impact the quality and marketability of your writing, and I don't think you should worry too much about people choosing not to read you based on where you live. It will probably happen a little bit. It won't happen a lot.
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Old 10-16-2012, 12:46 PM   #117
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Default Re: The New Black List

You do not have to fill in any information other than name and email address as I recall, which was all that had the required asterisk.

Of course they do have your credit card info seperately.
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Old 10-16-2012, 12:53 PM   #118
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Default Re: The New Black List

Echoing Knaight, the disconnect for me comes with the idea that anyone in the industry who looks for scripts as a function of their job would basically work for free by scouring an amateur database. They already have a HUGE backlog of material vetted by managers and agents. Too much to get to, in most cases.

It feels somewhat disenguious to me to sell this to credit card-clutching newbies as a place that execs (and that is the inference being made) will be using as part of their pipeline.

It isn't and they won't.
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Old 10-16-2012, 12:56 PM   #119
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Default Re: The New Black List

Franklin, is there a way to update the uploaded script without deleting the listing?
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Old 10-16-2012, 01:04 PM   #120
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Default Re: The New Black List

The paid Black List will compete with the real Black List cuz at the end of the year everyone in town is gonna wanna read the scripts on the industry Black List and not scripts from the service...I think the paid service is gonna end up like Inktip and attract low-level producers and agents who don't have a pipeline to good material.
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