Tomatometer Criteria

Movie reviews in the Tomatometer come from publications or individual critics that have been selected by the Rotten Tomatoes staff. The criteria for inclusion for both publications and critics are separated across three divisions; print, broadcast, and online, each with its own criteria for Tomatometer inclusion.


SOURCE APPROVAL

Print publications must achieve and maintain status as one of the following:

  • - A top 100 daily US newspaper
  • - A top 100 weekly US newspaper
  • - A top 100 magazine
  • - A top 10 entertainment-based publication

Sources used to determine national publication ranks include the Audit Bureau of Circulations, The Magazine Publishers of America, and the Association of Alternative Weeklies. Applications for international publications will be made on a case-by-case basis, with input from local Rotten Tomatoes editors when applicable.

Broadcast outlets must achieve and maintain status as a national TV or radio outlet (either via syndication or network broadcast) for Tomatometer consideration. Alternatively, a TV outlet must be broadcasting in one of the top ten DMAs, as listed by Nielsen Ratings. Radio outlets must be broadcasting in one of the top five DMAs, as listed by Arbitron. In almost all cases, an outlet's individual reviews must be available online, either as a segment transcript or an alternate, written review.

Online publications must achieve and maintain a minimum 500,000 unique monthly visitors according to comScore, Inc or Nielsen Net Ratings and reviews must have an average length of at least 300 words. Publications must also show a consistent standard of professionalism, writing quality, and editorial integrity across all reviews and articles. Lastly, site design and layout should also reflect a reasonable level of quality and must have a domain name specific to the property.

For all outlets, reviews should be readable within a standard browser; reviews that require users to download additional software or browser plugins (ie PDFs) are strongly discouraged. Applications for international outlets will be made on a case-by-case basis, with input from local Rotten Tomatoes editors when applicable.


CRITICS APPROVAL

Print critics must be currently employed as a film critic at a Tomatometer-approved publication for a minimum of two calendar years to be considered for individual approval.

Broadcast critics must be currently employed as a film critic at a Tomatometer-approved outlet for a minimum of two calendar years to be considered for individual approval.

Online critics must have published no less than 100 reviews across two calendar years at a single, Tomatometer-approved publication, and all reviews should have an average length of at least 300 words to be considered for individual approval.

Video critics
For critics who are primarily publishing their reviews on video, inclusion on the Tomatometer is dependent on meeting the following criteria:

  • Video critics must submit a resume outlining their qualifications to review films (include examples of web or print reviews, film-related jobs, etc).
  • Video reviews must be embedded on a website or blog separate from a video hosting site like YouTube or Vimeo, and written transcripts of the reviews must be included with each video entry.
  • Critics must be able to demonstrate a consistent level of professionalism and insight in both their reviews and in the production of their videos.
  • Video critics must have at least 20,000 subscribers on a video hosting site.

In all cases applicants should have two years' worth of published reviews available online, and all applicants must be able to demonstrate that their reviews have editorial oversight.

In some cases, critics that are publishing reviews on a Tomatometer-approved outlet and have membership in select critics associations may be considered for individual approval. However, membership in a critics association does not guarantee approval.

The approved societies are:


TOP CRITICS

Top Critic is a title awarded to the most significant contributors of cinematic and critical discourse. To be considered for Top Critics designation, a critic must be published at a print publication in the top 10% of circulation, employed as a film critic at a national broadcast outlet for no less than five years, or employed as a film critic for an editorial-based website with over 1.5 million monthly unique visitors for a minimum of three years. A Top Critic may also be recognized as such based on their influence, reach, reputation, and/or quality of writing, as determined by Rotten Tomatoes staff.


THE FINE PRINT

Even if criteria under appropriate divisions are met, all applying critics and sources will be evaluated for quality of writing and presentation, as determined by Rotten Tomatoes staff. In all cases, Rotten Tomatoes maintains the rights to approve, reject, and remove critics and sources across all divisions on a case by case basis.


CRITIC APPLICATION

If you are eligible to be an Approved Tomatometer Critic, please register with Rotten Tomatoes first and have an activated registration. Registration is free and can be completed by clicking here. Please do not apply to be part of the Tomatometer until your registration has been completed!

Once you've completed your registration, please fill out and submit the form below. The following application will be sent to Rotten Tomatoes editors for processing. Note that the process of verifying and enabling access to the Article Submission Tool can take several days. Questions? Contact us here.

Click here to complete your free registration


SOURCE ADMINISTRATION APPLICATION

Editors and webmasters of publications which are already contributing the Tomatometer are encouraged to apply for "source administration" privileges. Once authorized, editors may log into Rotten Tomatoes in order to add, edit, or delete articles and reviews from their publication on Rotten Tomatoes. This allows editors to maintain their listings on Rotten Tomatoes for multiple authors.

If you wish to use this service, please register with Rotten Tomatoes first and have an activated registration. Registration is free and can be completed by clicking here. Please do not apply for the service until your registration has been completed!

Once you've completed these tasks, please fill out and submit the form below. The following application will be sent to Rotten Tomatoes editors for processing. Note that the process of verifying and enabling access to the Source Administration Tool can take several days. Questions? Contact Contact us here.

Click here to complete your free registration

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