So, who out there is already sick of hearing about Twitter? I know there are a few people in my life that can't help but roll their eyes when they even hear the word, but I'll totally admit it to being full fledged addict. The number of smart-phone users and people on social networks like Twitter are reaching all-time highs, and in a piece for Variety, Susan Lambert looked at some of the ways in which movie studios are looking to cash in. But the bad news is that nobody is quite sure about whether or not this new style of advertising is a success. Now that four out of the six majors already have Twitter accounts, and poster launches and ARG games are popping up daily, it would seem that everyone loves a new toy -- whether it works or not.

If you think back to a year ago, the studios were all about creating viral campaigns (Blame J.J. Abrams if you must) and fans could spend hours pouring over HTML code to find a hidden message that located a secret 'hatch' or a photo of a mutated whale. But the original ARG-style viral campaigns have already faded away, and while there are still a few of them out there, they haven't exactly been a success (case in point: how many of you out there signed up for Emmerich's IHC lottery? That's what I thought). I think the biggest deterrent for fans was that if you wanted to play along, it was going to be an awful lot of work. But with the automation of services like Twitter or a dedicated movie app on your smart-phone, it's a one time deal. If you don't have time to take down Skynet by engaging in a complicated treasure hunt, why not just sign up as part of the Human Resistance and John Connor will do the work for you?

After the jump find out if Twitter is really that different from any other advertising medium...


In the business of movies, bad word of mouth can ruin a film's chances, and thanks to the world of social networking, the word has never spread faster. But in the end, services like Twitter or smart-phone apps are like any other advertising outlet -- it's just the technology that has changed. It really doesn't matter if you are 'terminating yourself', or competing for a walk on role in The Crazies; the big question is this: How is that any different than filling out a ballot for a contest, listening to an ad, or lining up for a photo with a Terminator impersonator at the mall? No matter what the method is, doesn't it all boil down to 'getting butts in the seats'? Studios are in a constant battle for box-office dollars and they would have to be crazy to pass up access to an audience of 10 million people.

Do you think these kinds of campaigns make a difference in your viewing habits? Could this kind of advertising really change your mind about a film? Or this it just another fad that will disappear faster than you can say Tweet?