At a Monday midnight viewing of ‘The Sacrament,’ Billington, who founded FirstShowing.net, alerted theatre managers to cellphone use in the theatre. He then called 911, and the dispatcher laughed off the call.
Billington took to Twitter to document the ordeal.
Arguing with theater manages that tell me that cell phones are allowed in theater while guy in FRONT ROW has it on the whole time. WTF #TIFF— Alex Billington (@firstshowing) September 9, 2013
He also said he was concerned over possible piracy in the theatre.
If it's wrong to report potential piracy to authorities, then how will piracy ever be stopped. If it's not taken seriously, it will remain.— Alex Billington (@firstshowing) September 9, 2013
Billington later told Buzzfeed he simply wanted to report what he thought to be a crime to the authorities.
"The call made was to report an act of piracy in progress, a major crime that many signs around TIFF remind people is a punishable offense. I simply requested that an officer confront and confirm that he was not pirating," he wrote.
It didn’t take long for Twitter to jump on Billington's story; some came to his defence, some suggested a punishment, while others simply called for common sense.
See some of the best Twitter reactions to the story below: