Sinemia Showing Signs Of The Same Problems That Destroyed MoviePass, But There Might Be Hope

MoviePass famously broke the mold when it comes to how moviegoers get their tickets. But they also broke their bank, and now they're desperate to convince subscribers that they've fixed their problems and aren't back on their bullshit. Now fellow movie ticket subscription service Sinemia might be facing some of the same problems.

Sinemia has been facing an onslaught of criticism from users lately due to outages during the opening weekend of Jordan Peele's Us on March 23 and the days since. Meanwhile, plenty of other customers have suddenly had their subscriptions canceled on the basis of "fraud" (some are /Film readers and have even e-mailed us with complaints), others continue to have trouble buying tickets, and customer service doesn't seem to be doing much to help either. So what's the deal here? Conveniently, Sinemia Founder and CEO Rifat Oguz says these problems are few and far between. Could they really be putting in effort to make things right?

Over the past couple of month, Sinemia has been the source of a lot of complaints. There are added, seemingly hidden fees when tickets are purchased online. Users are having trouble using the physical card in theaters which helps them avoid these online fees. Customer service is often unhelpful when users need help purchasing a ticket. A new requirement forces users to submit a picture of themselves next to their driver's license to confirm their identity or they're not allowed to use the service. The list goes on.

IndieWire sat down with Sinemia Founder and CEO Rifat Oguz, and unfortunately he seems to be mostly in the dark when it comes to some of these specific user complaints that keep stacking up on Reddit and Twitter. Hundreds have even reached out to IndieWire with their own issues, especially when it comes to being falsely accused of fraud. The problem is that Oguz didn't have any real answers about most of these issues in this extensive interview, which often feels laborious and confrontational. But there is hope.

After claiming to be clueless about a myriad of the kind of complaints that have cropped up online, Sinemia has created a new customer service site for users who believe they have been wrongfully terminated from the service. They've also created another customer service site for reporting bugs they encounter within the Sinema app. At the very least, it seems like the company is trying to make things right, even as they make mistakes. So hopefully this helps document the issues users are having and will stop many from getting screwed out of what they're paying for.

Supposedly, Sinemia is hiring new customer service reps all the time. As they update the service with new plans and try to figure out how to fix their issue with annoying fees, they're bound to have more problems. They're still a start-up after all. But these concerns are exactly the kind of issues that made users wary of MoviePass, especially when it comes to service outages and uncertainty about what's causing problems with the service. We'd hate to see Sinemia go down the same path and become another company who disappointed their customers after the promise of a service that truly benefited them.

We encourage you to read the full interview with Sinemia Founder and CEO Rifat Oguz over at IndieWire.