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Why don’t you just Behave!!!!

Hello guys and welcome back to a section of my yarns this week. I have been prolonging this particular topic for a minute as I thought somewhere in my mind that we would somehow learn and get it right but considering the experiences I have had, I must say that the progress has been a little too slow. (I also promised more goodies at the beginning of the week so here goes!)

I’m just going to get straight to the point and ask the following question:

‘Do you think we have the best cinema experiences available to us as Nigerians?’

Cinema etiquette is one topic I feel if not handled in these early stages could escalate into a full-blown menace just like corruption is today.

A lot of times the experience you have tells on the set or class of people watching the movie with you or working on the cinema floor; I know for a fact that it is one of the reasons some people prefer some cinemas over others.

And don’t think I’m talking to only moviegoers, cos I’m not! This cuts across the cinema environment courtesy of management, the staff even before the moviegoers.

Let’s get into this from one group to the other:

The Environment (The management)

Let me be the first to say to cinema management that even though a lot of people put convenience or proximity into consideration when choosing the place to go see a movie, the environment you provide them is what will factor their returning or choosing your place when convenience or proximity is off the bargaining table.

Why would I want to frequent a cinema where:

The Air Conditioning is not regulated well; its either always too hot or freezing cold almost never bearable

I do not have a convenient waiting area if my movie is delayed or if I get there on time

There’s always a problem with the movie, screen, seats, or there’s the frequent power outage during a movie

They sell more tickets for a movie than the seating capacity of the hall so I have to sit on the peripherals.

Their refreshments are expensive and nothing to write home about; popcorn’s either too sweet or too burnt; drinks are never cold enough etc.

They do not have the recent movies showing elsewhere in the world; I want to pay to watch a recent film, not one I could have downloaded a month ago in HD quality.

I’ll stop here so as not to sound too harsh but I believe every management team over a cinema should at least have the above thoughts in their minds because if I don’t enjoy the experience in one cinema I may as well go to another or just download the movie and watch from the convenience of MY BED!!

The Staff

It has always baffled me how people would do jobs they don’t like and then it would almost be like a contest of who can show the greatest displeasure on their face as possible.

But this is not the only bit of staff advice I have; I would like to let the cinema staff know one thing:

‘No matter what point in the chain you are, whether it be selling tickets, selling refreshments or collecting tickets before people go in; your job is primarily customer service.’

I’m not asking anyone to suck up or be overtly nice; I’m just saying, treat me like I’m not encroaching into your life and being a bother.

Take your time to be polite, answer enquiries sufficiently and effectively, make your customer feel welcome and if you’re the one selling refreshments or collecting the ticket, an occasional enjoy your movie would not hurt.

All of this says a lot about the management also and how much time they put into do proper training and quality assurance but as someone who has frequented the cinema so much over the years and seen cinema staff come and go, I think some more work can be put into making the consumer experience richer than it already is and the staff will have a big impact on this.

Finally, one advice for anyone who has a rotten personality and finds themselves in a customer service job like this:

‘Just before the start of work go before the mirror, smile, take the rotten attitude and put it in your pocket, think of the happiest thing that could ever happen to you and then get to work. If you have to pretend you are having the time of your life long enough, you probably would soon start to.’ 

The Moviegoers

OK! Now as I’m sure most of my audience right now probably falls into this category I will go all in to try to make my point without sounding condescending.

Firstly, if you decide to go to the cinema please realize this:

‘As much as you want to have fun, there are others trying to have fun there too and it is entirely rude to encroach on that.’

Yes we want the staff to behave but that does not mean we should misbehave; if they tell you to produce a valid I.D card to get a discount, by all means produce one and don’t behave like they should know you’re a student. If you don’t have one, just go on a Monday (or as it’s the case in some cinemas also Wednesday) to get a discount; or you may want to just sit this one out and wait till there’s some extra dough. But please, please don’t behave like it’s your right to get a student ticket and be rude.

If there’s a crowd or if you think the movie you are about to watch will draw a crowd (or if it’s a Monday or Wednesday) you may want to queue on time to get your ticket and refreshments. It is very uncalled for if you decide to get there late and then rush the staff into answering you, try to manoeuvre your way past people who are trying to be orderly or get to the extreme of either pushing or snapping at people to hurry up.

If for some unforeseen reason you get there late, please don’t throw your manners out the window; you can either decide to wait for the next showing of the movie or accept that you got there late. Don’t make your problem everybody’s cup of tea.

When you communicate with the staff please appreciate their service by also being nice. Don’t ever think it’s their job alone to put up a good attitude.

Please respect the rules of the cinema too and if you’re going to smuggle any contraband in, then don’t be embarrassed if you’re caught and called up on it.

Now that you are in the cinema hall please let’s get some thins straight:

  •  Before the movie starts there’s usually a set of instructions, kindly follow them because they aid our experience.
  •  You paid for one seat and not one for your bag, leg or for the imaginary friend you brought along. I have seen people seat on the stairs because they thought there were no available seats while some people’s bags sat comfortably. That’s not cool at all.
  • I don’t want to know your ringtone or hear you lie about where you are so please put your phone on silent and if it buzzes then either try as hard as you can to whisper or step out to take your call.
  • You are not in your living room, so please minimize your sudden outbursts. I remember once a lady had to be literally told to shut it because she thought she needed to give us all movie commentary like a football match.
  • The cinema hall is not the place to catch up on all the stories you’ve missed in each others lives; if you want to do that, then please go to a restaurant or meet at home!

If you think the dark cinema hall is the ideal place to do all the hormonal satisfaction for your lustful desires then please you’re too ‘young’ to be in a relationship. It has nothing to do with age but with the maturity of your mind and although I’m not saying there should be no contact please let’s remember to be appropriate.

I realise I have said a lot and you may need to digest a lot but I hope this helps in the quest to have quality cinema experiences on my own turf.

What have been your experiences? Sound off in the comments!

26 Comments

26 Comments

  1. @ridwanadeniyi

    22nd November 2012 at 6:07 pm

    Lol… So true and hilarious at thesame time. Nice

  2. redletters

    22nd November 2012 at 8:15 pm

    Hilarious..I can imagine how much fun you had writing this..am sure they’ll behave

  3. fava

    22nd November 2012 at 8:26 pm

    Hilarious!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  4. ajayi tayo

    22nd November 2012 at 9:03 pm

    Humm! Nice!. But u should know dat all dat u have mentioned points 2 one tin attutide (values). Now dis are my questions 2 u; y do nigerians go 2 d cinema?; how many cinemas do we have in lagos a lone?;where are d cinemas located?; Do u know we have more under- employed people (people who don’t enjoy wat dey do) dan d empolyed one?; Do d management of any cinema train their staffs?; and do we nigerias really know how a cinema exprerience should be like? Becos if u don’t know u would be served with shit and u would luv taking it all d dis of ur life until.

    • MoviePencil

      25th November 2012 at 1:33 am

      1. I don’t know why all Nigerians go to the cinema but I know a lot of people who want to enjoy the big screen, surround sound, larger than life experience. I know people who want to enjoy a time out while watching a movie.
      2. We currently have Four functioning cinemas with at least two more in the works. One on the mainland, one on Lagos Island, one in V/I and the Last in Lekki.
      3. As for this part, if you cannot enjoy what you are doing when it seems that its small, you will not enjoy what you are doing even when it seems big. It’s a mindset of people always believing that their job is not enough or that they are better than the job they have. Why don’t you just do what you have excellently while trying to move ahead in life?
      4. I would ask one and get back to you on that. But I believe any Organisation should do that especially at entry level. The question is how effective is the training. Are the training materials excellent and do the people undergoing the training actually take their time to learn something?
      5. I believe from the write up, you can see that one Nigerian does, and I’m sure I’m not the only one who does. Even if you do not know what an excellent cinema experience should be like, you would know when things are not up to par. Mediocrity stinks you know.

      I hope I was able to answer your questions effectively.

    • Oluwatobi

      19th April 2013 at 12:37 am

      Okay, I’m sorry, but I don’t AT ALL get a lot of what you said, especially “…Do u know we have more under-employed people (people who don’t enjoy wat dey do) dan d empolyed one?”

      Underemployment cannot be attributed to individuals na. You can only determine that collectively, WHEN you know who the UNEMPLOYED are.

      …Just saying.

      • osas. V

        23rd April 2013 at 8:46 am

        being under employed is very different from bein unemployed. if u are under employed, it means that u have a job, but that job is way below your qualification, and you most likely do not enjoy. so stemming form this definition, we definitely hav more underemployed people as a result of shortage of “appropriate jobs” as the case may be.

  5. Olubunmi Kuku

    22nd November 2012 at 9:13 pm

    Well I can’t deny the facts but at the same time that was harsh, it shows that we all need to seat up to make the Cinema industry thrive. If everybody does its quota we won’t have issues. Well I hope all parties visited this site so that they will know what they will work and improve on. Thanks Bro that was so straight foward

  6. Gb swags

    22nd November 2012 at 9:30 pm

    So so true……. Very funny too*thumbs up*

  7. MoviePencil

    22nd November 2012 at 9:43 pm

    Thanks guys, I’m glad you enjoyed the post. A lot more to come just for you!

  8. Posser

    22nd November 2012 at 9:54 pm

    I have never really been to a cinema in Nigeria but a word of advice to adults that take kids to the film house. Be sensible and arrange child care as kids fidgeting and going to the toilet every minute is quite disruptive. I am sure the viewers would like to watch the film they paid for without having to contend with ‘sit down, shhh, keep quite’.

    • MoviePencil

      22nd November 2012 at 9:56 pm

      LOL! Now why didn’t I remember that bit. Also please parents do us all a favor and make sure the movie you take your kids for is appropriate for them to watch. Thank you.

  9. Eka grace damilola

    22nd November 2012 at 10:58 pm

    Lol nicee! Article and accurate to altho, In my school they have refused to give us I.d card 🙁 cn I take my exam ducket :D, or better still uncle just take me 😉

    • MoviePencil

      22nd November 2012 at 11:01 pm

      Damilola!! This young lady don’t be blackmailing me in the open like this now haba!

  10. Omakin

    22nd November 2012 at 10:10 pm

    Lol. Nice article

  11. Lamide

    22nd November 2012 at 10:28 pm

    Nice one Segun! Keep it coming. I read some of the sentences in your voice too sha :p and very catchy title! 😉

  12. Oluwadami

    24th November 2012 at 12:20 am

    WOW!!!! This is all soooo true. Sometimes i wish i had like a duct tape in my bag to cover some people’s mouths *rolling eyes*. . .Nice piece dear!!!

    • tywo

      24th November 2012 at 9:41 pm

      …The title of this article to me, is ‘why I don’t go to the cinemas’ 🙂
      This is an entertain vent…but a vent after all. Its part of the cinema experience. The people who like to run commentary can as well tell you ‘hey, why don’t u get the dvd and watch it at home?’. Which is why I do 😀

      • MoviePencil

        25th November 2012 at 1:41 am

        It is not part of the Cinema Experience!! That is where I would never agree! It’s like saying people are making noise in the library and if challenged they can as well ask, ‘why didn’t you just study in your room’?

        The cinema hall is not a place to talk/make noise. It has never been it would never be. There’s the place for exclamations when spectacular things happen on screen but beyond that, you should not try to become one of the actors ‘cos we paid to watch the ones on screen not you.

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  16. Oluwatobi

    19th April 2013 at 12:53 am

    Much overdue! Thanks for doing justice to the subject. To the viewers, remember we’re in Africa, and there’s always the option of using the proverbial rod.

    Omo mehn, just whoop that uncultured moviegoing fool’s behind if need be!!!

    • MoviePencil

      19th April 2013 at 1:53 am

      I’m glad you enjoyed the post…. as for whooping the people misbehaving, sha make sure you don’t try to whoop someone that looks like the hulk if you have Justin Bieber’s stature….. #justsaying

  17. Ose Binitie

    21st May 2013 at 4:53 pm

    Really cool article… Hilarious as well! Thumbs up!

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