MoviePass CEO now denies the app tracked customers without their knowledge

An Evening with Beverly Luff Linn Dinner presented by MoviePass

An Evening with Beverly Luff Linn Dinner presented by MoviePass

MoviePass, the cinema subscription service that's cheaper than Netflix, gave itself a tiny PR scandal after CEO Mitch Lowe made a creepy remark about the app's location tracking abilities on mobile. "We never reveal any information that will let them know who bought what". While we do create partnerships with theaters and studios in which we offer statistical data on ticket use and other trends, we never share our members' identities or personal information or personal data with anyone. "We watch where you go afterwards", according to a report from Media Play News. "I implied we know where you are when you're on the way to the movies, and that's not what we do". Remember, for numerous companies providing free or low-priced services, data greed is good.

Later, the company issued a statement to clarify what Lowe had said. They still want to build a "whole night at the movies" but they will always ask users to opt in or opt out of location tracking. I would like to eliminate any misconceptions that we're collecting location related data. "We only locate customers when they use the app".

For obvious reasons, many took offense to the disclosure and rightly so.

MoviePass still wants to offer you services based on your location, including recommendations of what to do before and after the film. He dismissed it as "not a huge number" and they are still expecting to reach 5 million subscribers by the end of the year.

Despite the apparently minor impact on the company, Lowe seemed to be in damage control mode on Monday rolling back what he had said in an interview with Variety.

MoviePass does not track and has never tracked or collected data on the location of our members at any point when the app is not active.

Lowe said in the email that MoviePass only tracks users in two scenarios: when a user searches for theaters nearby and when a user checks into a theater with the app open.

Lowe made the initial comments, which sparked the outcry at the Entertainment Finance Forum earlier in March, saying, "We watch how you drive from home to the movies". The letter was published on the MoviePass website and clarifies that the app now uses standard location services on an "opt-in" basis. "We never used it, and it was confusing to have it there", Lowe said. That's when the company changed its pricing model from $15-$50 a month to only $10 a month.