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Steaming, Physical Media, and the Future of Home Video

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Steaming, Physical Media, and the Future of Home Video

Old 03-12-13, 04:54 PM
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Re: Steaming, Physical Media, and the Future of Home Video

Streaming is easier to use for most people, and most people also don't like storing things.
I don't see how it's easier to use for 'most people', given that these are the same people who couldn't set the clock on their VCRs. I'm more tech-savvy than the average person (though not as much with computer-related stuff), and have gotten very frustrated at streaming services not working due to an internet connection issue, so I can only imagine how the 'average person' deals with it. True that when it's working it's fairly easy to use.

True on people not liking to store stuff, witness those who don't even put discs back in their cases! Though I can see these people also losing their collection if they forget their password and just give up.
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Old 03-12-13, 05:57 PM
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Re: Steaming, Physical Media, and the Future of Home Video

Originally Posted by Spottedfeather View Post
And when the hard drives fail or the files become corrupt ?....
That's why you should always keep a backup. Hopefully hard drive failures become a thing of the past since SSDs don't have any moving parts, therefore they don't have anything that can actually crash. Although, there will always be defective drives, which is why you should still keep a backup even if you do have a SSD.

Originally Posted by Alan Smithee View Post
I don't see how it's easier to use for 'most people', given that these are the same people who couldn't set the clock on their VCRs. I'm more tech-savvy than the average person (though not as much with computer-related stuff), and have gotten very frustrated at streaming services not working due to an internet connection issue, so I can only imagine how the 'average person' deals with it. True that when it's working it's fairly easy to use.
Was the clock thing a legitimate problem that people throughout VHS's lifespan or was it something people had a problem with when VCRs first came out and it just stuck around the public consciousness? I never understood how so many people could have so much trouble setting the damn clock on VCRs. I never had a problem setting it when I was a kid.

If you're having problems with your internet connection when you try to stream movies, you should probably talk to your ISP or get your hardware checked out.
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Old 03-12-13, 06:14 PM
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Re: Steaming, Physical Media, and the Future of Home Video

Originally Posted by Alan Smithee View Post
Just read the whole thing- my 2 cents; I've always thought Netflix was a great replacement for broadcast and cable TV, but not for physical media. While Netflix still can't match the quality of what cable is CAPABLE of providing (but rarely does), the fact that it shows you what you want, when you want, and with no intrusions (at least aside from that thing which breaks into the end credits, which thankfully isn't supported on my TV) makes it a great value. Blu-Ray quality of course is still much better, and more permanent. I don't expect everything on Netflix to always be there so I watch what I want as soon as I can, but if it's something I like I'll buy it on Blu-Ray so I can keep it forever.

One limitation about streaming that nobody seems to notice is that it can't show video-based material at 30 frames per second! Don't tell me "I need a new video card", the apps built into my TV and Blu-Ray player STILL won't stream video material at the proper frame rate!
Why does it have to be so hard to want to listen to end credit music at the end of something on channels, especially when you pay a premium (Showtime, Starz)?

I don't want credits running in a little box at the top while another episode starts to play, shrunken down. I want it all normal size on my TV!!!
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Old 03-12-13, 06:23 PM
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Re: Steaming, Physical Media, and the Future of Home Video

Originally Posted by big e View Post
That's why you should always keep a backup. Hopefully hard drive failures become a thing of the past since SSDs don't have any moving parts, therefore they don't have anything that can actually crash. Although, there will always be defective drives, which is why you should still keep a backup even if you do have a SSD.



Was the clock thing a legitimate problem that people throughout VHS's lifespan or was it something people had a problem with when VCRs first came out and it just stuck around the public consciousness? I never understood how so many people could have so much trouble setting the damn clock on VCRs. I never had a problem setting it when I was a kid.

If you're having problems with your internet connection when you try to stream movies, you should probably talk to your ISP or get your hardware checked out.
My backup is the discs I still keep. While I rip them for streaming from my PC through my Tivo/360/PS3, I still don't get rid of the original.

You had no problem setting the clock as a kid because kids were the ones that cared enough to figure out how it works. Adults didn't bother when they could just make a kid do it.

ISP may or may not be the issue. Depends on what speeds you have, latency, crap just going wrong somewhere but your ISP knows there isn't an issue but they'll send someone out to check it, boneheaded customer service reps and techs, etc. Streaming just adds another layer to the cake of potential issues, which is the ISP.

Don't forget about the data caps they're all starting to place, which limits access even more, especially if you live in crap hole Australia, where you always have to watch out for dingos.
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Old 03-12-13, 08:37 PM
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Re: Steaming, Physical Media, and the Future of Home Video

Originally Posted by big e View Post
I mean, some of the posters here don't take into consideration that by streaming movies, a person may discover a movie he/she might really love and end up purchasing it on DVD or Blu-ray. Just because a person streams movies doesn't mean that's the only way he/she watches movies.
Fantastic point. Honestly, I think the Netflix/Amazon streaming services of the world are the new way people stumble upon hidden gems.

Fact is, DVDs have flooded the market to the point where they've been severely devalued. You can't count on people to blind buy movies they've never seen before @ $15-$20 a piece. In 1998, if I would've gone to a Big Lots esque store with that volume of $3 titles, I would've needed a wheelbarrow to carry out my purchase. Now I've left empty handed several times cause there wasn't anything even at that bargain price I felt was worth it.

I envision in the near future DVD/Blu/etc still being purchased for the mainstream blockbuster fare, and a few people's all-time favorites, but streaming suiting the needs for non-top-tier content. As the shift has gone to convenience being king, the actual content seems to matter less and less. With thousands of titles available at your disposal, you'll likely find something good enough to occupy your time, and for most people that's acceptable.
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Old 03-12-13, 08:42 PM
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Re: Steaming, Physical Media, and the Future of Home Video

Originally Posted by Spottedfeather View Post
And when the hard drives fail or the files become corrupt ?....
Life will go on and anything I really want I'll just get again. I also back up my good stuff to DVD-r. So, it's really no different than saying what would I do if all my DVDs were lost in a flood.
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Old 03-12-13, 09:50 PM
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Re: Steaming, Physical Media, and the Future of Home Video

Good News! We've upgraded your online Star Wars trilogy so that every character is now Jar Jar Binks!! No need to thank us, it's all part of our commitment to providing you with the best service possible.

Update: Due to the fact that actress ____ is now a big star then she's requested that all copies of your favorite movie, that you re-watch at least 4 times a year, in which she appears topless for 3.7 seconds no longer be made available and we've complied! We apologize for any inconvenience and have issued you a credit for $0.05 in case this in any way troubles you. But the important news is that we have dozens of other films to choose from, and we feel confident that you'll find a new favorite very soon. So please think of this as a great opportunity and we thank you again for your choosing non-physical media!

I have faith that the future will bring many such "opportunities".
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Old 03-13-13, 01:10 AM
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Re: Steaming, Physical Media, and the Future of Home Video

I heard that Lynda Carter kept "Bobbie Joe and the Outlaw" off the market for a while since she appears nude in it. I see it's available as a DVD-R now though. But yeah, that's a big reason I don't support having movies available exclusively online.
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Old 03-13-13, 01:35 AM
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Re: Steaming, Physical Media, and the Future of Home Video

Individual services have technical problems too- Netflix has gone out many times, and checking CinemaNow (the service Best Buy owns) on Facebook, looks like they had an outage last month. One guy said: "I was watching Batman when it just stopped! What kind of BS is this? Just killed the whole movie since I was all into it and now..." Yep, I want ALL my movies like that!
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Old 03-13-13, 01:57 AM
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Re: Steaming, Physical Media, and the Future of Home Video

In addition to all the red flags above, I've been buying some TV Shows on Xbox Live, but that means I'm locked into maintaining my subscription or I lose it all.
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Old 03-13-13, 03:19 AM
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Re: Steaming, Physical Media, and the Future of Home Video

Originally Posted by Alan Smithee View Post
I heard that Lynda Carter kept "Bobbie Joe and the Outlaw" off the market for a while since she appears nude in it. I see it's available as a DVD-R now though. But yeah, that's a big reason I don't support having movies available exclusively online.
I never got around to buying "Exit to Eden" when it was available and it hasn't been available for years and it doesn't look like there's any rush to get it onto Blu. I don't know if it's true, but I'd heard that Rosie O'Donnell did not want it out there due to the outfit she appears in (very much not the reason that I want the film).

But there are dozens of older movies and tv shows that I could name off the top of my head that have not yet had DVD releases (or Blu releases) and then lots of others that went out of print and have been gone for years. "Searching for Bobby Fischer" is a great example. Why in the world has that one been so long OOP? I really enjoy that film and can see no reason for it but I'm glad that I have the DVD. If we only have non-physical media then we have no control. And there's no telling how tastes and norms will evolve, or if some actor will be caught up in a scandal and all their movies will be pulled. If someone gets the bad press of say Mel Gibson and then Braveheart, Lethal Weapon, etc. are never ever available again?
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Old 03-13-13, 04:27 AM
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Re: Steaming, Physical Media, and the Future of Home Video

Originally Posted by big e View Post
Was the clock thing a legitimate problem that people throughout VHS's lifespan or was it something people had a problem with when VCRs first came out and it just stuck around the public consciousness? I never understood how so many people could have so much trouble setting the damn clock on VCRs. I never had a problem setting it when I was a kid.
I was born in 1990 and I was still setting the VCR for my parents right up until they finally made the jump to DVD. (And now I 'set up' their DVD and BD players.. by plugging an HDMI cable in..)
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Old 03-13-13, 10:09 AM
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Re: Steaming, Physical Media, and the Future of Home Video

Originally Posted by Alan Smithee View Post
Individual services have technical problems too- Netflix has gone out many times, and checking CinemaNow (the service Best Buy owns) on Facebook, looks like they had an outage last month. One guy said: "I was watching Batman when it just stopped! What kind of BS is this? Just killed the whole movie since I was all into it and now..." Yep, I want ALL my movies like that!
Let's not forget some of the video services where if you're going through an Xbox or PS3, that if they're doing their own network maintenance where you can't log in, then you can't get into Netflix or whatever other app requires you to be signed in to use.

On a side note, I hate the PS3 worst of all. You install the video app service but they only install the basic app with none of the updates. Then after you first install it and try to run it, it tells you there's updates for it and then you have to install that stuff. Why not install the latest version in the first place?
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Old 03-13-13, 11:33 AM
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Re: Steaming, Physical Media, and the Future of Home Video

Originally Posted by nick1091 View Post
Fantastic point. Honestly, I think the Netflix/Amazon streaming services of the world are the new way people stumble upon hidden gems.

Fact is, DVDs have flooded the market to the point where they've been severely devalued. You can't count on people to blind buy movies they've never seen before @ $15-$20 a piece. In 1998, if I would've gone to a Big Lots esque store with that volume of $3 titles, I would've needed a wheelbarrow to carry out my purchase. Now I've left empty handed several times cause there wasn't anything even at that bargain price I felt was worth it.
Came here to post this. I've always been a fan of buying used DVDs for several years now, but I know many members of the forum refuse to do so. That means you don't see the massive amounts of used DVDs at pawn shops and places like Half Price Books. Besides all the regular used titles (that go for $6-$20), they also always have carts of DVDs for as low as $1.


There's a lot of people for whom the attraction of DVD was simply the cheap price and the convenience. Streaming is now taking that place.

Even in my household, my DVD buying has dropped off sharply because I'm no longer buying what I call "fringe" titles - that is, movies or shows that I read about on a forum and lots of people talked about and I had no other way of checking out. Now with Netflix and HuluPlus, I don't have to risk that purchase, even at just a few bucks for a used copy.

My DVD purchasing has become more focused. I'm more likely to spend $20 on a new or even used copy of a Japanese kaiju film because it's something I'm more sure of wanting. Most of the other stuff I can just stream.

I see physical media going back to the laserdisc type of niche. We may still get some nice disc based releases of certain collectible films and such, and the price will also very likely go back up - if they can't make money on volume they'll make it on markup.
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Old 03-13-13, 03:56 PM
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Re: Steaming, Physical Media, and the Future of Home Video

Originally Posted by Strapped4Cash View Post
While I don't dispute any of those facts, I think it well worth remembering how low a percentage of VHS tapes were meant to be sold to the public by the manufacturers. That percentage did increase in later days as titles like Home Alone and Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves proved that customers would buy non-cartoon VHS titles in huge quantities, but still, many many new VHS titles were priced over $100 MSRP. DVD had a great advantage in that it was the first time that so so so many more titles than in the past were priced to be sold to consumers rather than the rental stores.
I think the studios were very cautious about releasing their films on VHS in the early days. They really wanted to have some control over its distribution and that's why they liked the $100 MSRP price tag and the idea of stores renting films. I still have a Disney VHS tape that has "For rental only. Sale or purchase is prohibited".

This changed when new release titles like Flashdance, Beverly Hills Cop, Top Gun and Crocodile Dundee were sold at $39.95. Basically rental stores just bought more of these titles, even at that price I think very few were purchased by regular Joes. Of course catalogue VHS titles sold relatively well throughout the 1980s and 90s.

I guess for reasons no greater than for sheer profit, they sold new release DVDs at $29.95 and people ran out in droves and bought them.
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Old 03-13-13, 05:01 PM
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Re: Steaming, Physical Media, and the Future of Home Video

In the 1980s most tapes sold for around $60. Both catalog and new. Sometimes $80. There were catalog titles special priced at 29.99. The early 90s is when the studios started getting into the retail market and started to release tons of catalog titles at 14.99. This is when Best Buy started their retail section. On direct from theater releases the studios began charging $100-120 per tape, giving rental stores a guarantee not to drop the price for six months. The rental stores bought them at a discount and had a six month exclusive to get their money back. At the end of six months the title would appear in Sunday's Best Buy ad with a tuesday release at 14.99. Consumers were never prohibited from purchasing any tape.
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Old 03-14-13, 02:03 AM
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Re: Steaming, Physical Media, and the Future of Home Video

Originally Posted by BobO'Link View Post
I actually seek out less expensive, non special editions, since I'd rather spend that extra money on another film for the library than on content I'll likely never view.
(When I have money) I deliberately do the exact opposite - my Collector-self pressures me to own the "Best" version, which is the version with the most additional features. I forced myself not to care too much about packaging (although the studios often marry the two, so the "Best" version comes in the fanciest packaging), although the Blu-ray Books tend to be tempting, even though I rarely look at it twice - but I do look at it.

I don't watch (or listen) to all the extra features, but I do find it reassuring to know they're there. If on a second viewing a film strikes me as more interesting, or reveals hidden depths, I like to know that there might be a documentary/article/commentary to further cement that reappraisal - generally written/made by someone with far greater (or specific) knowledge than me. And with Criterion (et al.) releases, the - often - higher price for the film really should* be offset with supplemental material, I feel.

Originally Posted by BobO'Link View Post
..I watched a few [extras] early on but now pretty much ignor them. I've found deleted/extended scenes are pretty much deleted/shortened for a reason.
Deleted and extended scenes were often cut for a reason, that's true, but they do still provide something of an insight into the film for that very reason. They can also sometimes make a film seem better - either by being awful by comparison (hence: what's left is better than that!) or by being worthy of inclusion (hence: the film is so good, even the excised bits are great!). Nevermind that occasionally entire subplots get removed for length reasons that can add considerably to the film.

Originally Posted by BobO'Link View Post
If they are so great create a extended version of your film *but* give me a choice as to which version to watch. Want to update your cut with better effects/timing/etc.? Fine. But, again, give *me* the choice of watching your alteration *or* the original theatrical release version. I purchase to watch what I saw on screen (theater or TV) the *first* time, *not* an edited version to please the whim of a director or cut because of music pigopolists who refuse to see the value of allowing a *snippet* of their music in a release for fear of losing a couple of pennies (do these guys *really* not understand that little snippet of music could actually result in increased sales from people of current generations who might otherwise be ignorant of the artist/performance thus generating far more revenue than a license agreement could?).
Yes, I get very unhappy when ONLY the re-cut version is available - or even when one-or-other cut winds up out of print, and the choice is removed. I understand cases like Blade Runner and Brazil (studio interference hamstrung the director), and I sympathise somewhat with George Lucas' position (the film he wanted to make was not the film he made, allegedly). I also understand that every release can't be like the best ones of Blade Runner and Brazil and include ALL the cuts. But I wish they could! (And more to the point, there was a time - thankfully almost past - when America released two versions of many films: Full- and Wide- Screen. If the studios could do that, why not release, when necessary, the two cuts separately? And together, for an added moneyspinner...)

And music cuts irritate me even when I have no knowledge of the original. The very idea that something that was cleared and OK at the time could become problematic just annoys me, even though I grudgingly accept some of the legalese surrounding it. And it's not just the music, because sometimes there's dialogue that then needs to be cut because it covers the music or references it... I don't like it. One of my minor-but-important memories of the great UK TV series Goodnight Sweetheart featured a Cliff Richard song that was unclearable for the DVDs.

What worries me most about the music clearance issues - and recutting for alternate markets/timeslots - is that the CUT version can overwrite the "real" one. Jonathan Creek wound up briefly cut on DVD because the wrong version was used. It was corrected, but might not have been. Presumably there was a time when there were separate TV masters and DVD masters, but now that digital is clouding the issue, I fear that the cut versions will become the only versions, because it will be the same digital files used in every instance - and to make them legally releasable, they'll be cut.**


*Not that it's "owed" me, nor that there aren't already-valid reasons for the increased base price. But if possible, I like to be better able to justify the extra few pennies for the film by telling myself they're for the extras.

**What will happen to programmes/films that are differently cut in different places, I wonder, mildly sarcastically? Blackadder's Christmas Carol is/was differently cut in the UK, US and Australia, with each including parts the others cut, and vice versa. Just UN-cut everything. If it was releasable in the first place, it's acceptable now.***

***With a grey area for libel and related issues.
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Old 03-14-13, 02:18 AM
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Re: Steaming, Physical Media, and the Future of Home Video

Originally Posted by Mister Peepers View Post
I disagree. They can but one just has to remove the temptation to read all about a film before it comes out... I simply don't read stuff like that. The temptation isn't so great for me to find out what happens in a film before it's come out, ruining any chance of surprise and the associated enjoyment that comes with it.
A side issue to the changes in film-related technology (to me) is the eroding of "good" review(er)s.

It is often, I find, necessary (and even more frequently interesting) - particularly with ticket prices as high as they are - to read a review to try and assess whether I will likely enjoy a film.* But so many reviewers now seem to deliberately/accidentally spoil things or give away plot points that they need not. The Internet-led democratisation of reviewers has been beneficial in many ways - reviews of and recognition for films that might otherwise be sidelined or overlooked; reviews by 'people like me'; space for lengthier reviews, etc. - but has also allowed people to become popular reviewers who don't really seem to have grasped some of the necessary skills of omission and description.

You should be able to read most articles before seeing a film without expecting to have all the surprises blown.

See also: trailers and how terrible and spoiler-y so many are. 'Better' to a limited extent than many early ones that just blast "Excitement!" "Thrills!" and "See...." without actually letting you know what it might be about, but worse in so many more ways.






*And GoldenWheels' point about free/subscription services allowing one to watch films they would otherwise never have had the opportunity to is VERY well made.
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Old 03-14-13, 02:32 AM
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Re: Steaming, Physical Media, and the Future of Home Video

Originally Posted by Alan Smithee View Post
Bugs have completely ruined my enjoyment of TV and why I hardly watch it at all anymore- they seem to be the elephant in the room to most people however, with nobody commenting on them.
Really - commercials didn't do it years ago...!?

Growing up in Britain, we had two channels with NO commerical (advert) breaks during a programme, and then ITV and C4 would break once in half-an-hour, and two- to three-times in an hour. It got a littler more pervasive over the years, but not very. Moving to America, I was literally appalled at the frequency of advert breaks! Five minutes of adverts before the programme, then the opening credits, then... MORE ------- ADVERTS?! Really? And everyone so used to it that they couldn't understand my bemusement, annoyance and anger.

I can tune out a bug or a crawl. It annoys me - more so if it's one of those animated "something you don't care about, NEXT!" ones at the bottom of the screen - but far, far, far less than the constant breaks. I'd prefer they weren't there, but I can live with them.

Except very occasionally the news, shows for other people (and even more occasionally 'something'), I don't watch TV at all. And it was the adverts that did it.


I have to rant just a little bit more. I sat through the recent The Prisoner remake, just in case it wasn't awful, and the experience was so much worse than the programme. (Which wasn't good.) Not only were there advert breaks at least every ten minutes, but they had 'interesting' bumpers either side of the commercial appeals trying to hype interest in the show I was already watching! Really. They were attempting, I assume, to keep my attention by asking facile trivia questions and attempting to point out items of interest. They literally had the opposite effect - I only made it through two episodes before the disruption of having to watch adverts for the show I was already watching made it impossible to watch anymore. It was jumping around, making the (in)action hard(er) to follow and just very, very, very irritating. The three letter channel name in the corner of the screen did not bother me in the slightest!
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Old 03-14-13, 02:36 AM
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Re: Steaming, Physical Media, and the Future of Home Video

Originally Posted by Regulus View Post
I haven't watched "Appointment TV", either broadcast or Pay, in over six years. From what I've seen, it's only gotten worse since I threw in the towel in 2007. DVDs are nothing less than a Godsend. No intrusions of any kind to interrupt my viewing. I read this last "Sweeps" period was one of the worst for the Networks, and Pay-TV has lost 3,000,000 customers since 2010. Prices have only gone up, while the quality of what's being shown has done nothing but head south. A house divided against itself cannot stand. I've never seen a business raise prices and lower the quality of what they produce stay in business for long. When people see this happen they do one of two things:

Find that product from another source.

Replace that product with something else.

Consequentially the company goes down the drain.
It's a vicious cycle, though. The cost almost has to go up if people abandon a service, and if there's less money coming in, the quality will usually go down.

That could be the enduring legacy of streaming replacing sales: lowered revenues leading to lesser and fewer products.*


*Unless the current Veronica Mars KickStarter success story spreads...
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Old 03-14-13, 02:49 AM
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Re: Steaming, Physical Media, and the Future of Home Video

Originally Posted by BobO'Link View Post
That really gets me on streaming. I just don't understand why anyone would "buy" and pay as much or *more* for a digital copy stored online when physical media is available.
It's the age-old appearance of it being 'better'. If one buys a DVD, one needs a DVD player. If one buys a theoretical bunch-of-bits, you can watch it on your phone wherever you like...

Those that think like that ignore or forget that for the most part they can only stream in certain places - and often for additional cost. More interesting/appalling in the 'changing attitudes' (re: bugs) is the quality and size of a film or show being watched. While some hail blu-ray, others are turning to YouTube-digitised versions of videos of broadcasts from years ago! While even a supposed 'normal' size TV is half the size of a decent house, a number of people seem to watch primarily on their tiny phone screens... (Although watching on an iPad-or-similar a foot in front of your face seems similar to a giant screen ten-feet away, so there's that.)

I don't want to ever have to pay for a file, if I can help it. I don't like the idea of a kindle replacing books or a cloud service replacing DVD releases. I want a physical object because I can control my own property!

However, I do like being offered both - in theory, and with the right prevailing conditions, a digital file stored remotely by a company with a vested interest in never losing it will last longer than a physical object. (Barring an EMP or other attack, and really.. there'd be bigger problems at that theoretical point!)
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Old 03-14-13, 02:55 AM
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Re: Steaming, Physical Media, and the Future of Home Video

Originally Posted by Alan Smithee View Post
And again, the "creative community" remains silent about [bugs]. Steven Speilberg requested some of his movies be shown bug-free, but even he seems to have caved on that recently. All it would take would be for someone like Joss Whedon to demand his next show be aired bug-free.

Seems those people would like us to see their movies in the best possible quality as well, which ISN'T through streaming! How about Michael Bay giving his latest crap-fest a Blu-Ray 3D exclusive release a month before it's available any other way, promoting it as seeing it the way he intended?
Taking something of a devil's advocate position: would a (hypothetical) director/creator want a select few - those who understand and care - to watch their product "as intended," or millions to watch it however possible? Presumably the benefit of reaching a wider audience is a trade-off worth making for most people..?

Interestingly, some channels and creative types HAVE managed to show things commercial free! Which rather backs up my thought that it's the advertising that is (seen as) the problem, not the bugs.
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Old 03-14-13, 03:05 AM
  #73  
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Re: Steaming, Physical Media, and the Future of Home Video

Originally Posted by Lastdaysofrain View Post
Your average person does not care about quality, they care about convenience. DVD didn't overtake VHS because it was better quality (which is a nice additional bonus) it did it because it's more convenient than VHS (no rewinding, smaller space, sell through, etc) which is why Blu Ray hasn't really come too far out of the niche and most people don't see any difference between DVD and Blu Ray, since it's not any easier to use.

Streaming is easier to use for most people, and most people also don't like storing things.
Precisely.

Sadly, but precisely.

As with many issues, it's difficult to really dig into these issues in the places where they're interesting because the specialised audiences often find it difficult to realise that their concerns are niche concerns. Valid, and often important concerns, but niche ones nonetheless.
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Old 03-14-13, 03:24 AM
  #74  
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Re: Steaming, Physical Media, and the Future of Home Video

Originally Posted by Alan Smithee View Post
Individual services have technical problems too- Netflix has gone out many times, and checking CinemaNow (the service Best Buy owns) on Facebook, looks like they had an outage last month. One guy said: "I was watching Batman when it just stopped! What kind of BS is this? Just killed the whole movie since I was all into it and now..." Yep, I want ALL my movies like that!
The corollary is: "I was watching my Batman DVD when the power went out and it just stopped..."
Things happen. Someone was "all into it" and the doorbell/phone rang; a family member started talking/throwing up; the power went out; dinner was ready; the DVD froze...

And the flip-side is the person who paid the price of a single DVD for a monthly subscription and watched a dozen films WITHOUT issue.

Originally Posted by Mister Peepers View Post
Let's not forget some of the video services where if you're going through an Xbox or PS3, that if they're doing their own network maintenance where you can't log in, then you can't get into Netflix or whatever other app requires you to be signed in to use.
Again, this is analogous to a power-cut. It's annoying. It 'shouldn't' happen, but it does. Most of these services a) do maintenance to make things better/smoother and b) try to schedule it at times when the least people will be affected.

Now, it's certainly annoying. And they are issues that don't affect DVDs. But there are also DVD-specific issues that streaming isn't affected by: I lost my disc, I broke my disc, someone scratched my disc. My player got dust in it, the tray snapped, a Library disc destroyed my DVD player*...

Streaming can be interrupted by Internet problems, and that can be a problem. But those problems are - generally speaking - not as pervasive for most people as the singular benefits. Not least those of choice, number, availability and price.



*Yep. A library disc destroyed my DVD player.
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Old 03-14-13, 03:38 AM
  #75  
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Re: Steaming, Physical Media, and the Future of Home Video

Originally Posted by milo bloom View Post
I've always been a fan of buying used DVDs for several years now, but I know many members of the forum refuse to do so. That means you don't see the massive amounts of used DVDs at pawn shops and places like Half Price Books. Besides all the regular used titles (that go for $6-$20), they also always have carts of DVDs for as low as $1.
I don't like the - admittedly usually low level - gamble involved in the term and description "used"..! But if the price (and condition) is right, it's far better than nothing. (Which is one of my arguments for streaming services, too.)

Originally Posted by milo bloom View Post
There's a lot of people for whom the attraction of DVD was simply the cheap price and the convenience. Streaming is now taking that place.
Exactly.

Originally Posted by milo bloom View Post
Even in my household, my DVD buying has dropped off sharply because I'm no longer buying what I call "fringe" titles - that is, movies or shows that I read about on a forum and lots of people talked about and I had no other way of checking out. Now with Netflix and HuluPlus, I don't have to risk that purchase, even at just a few bucks for a used copy.
Exactly, again! My reason is actually lack of money - I would still prefer to own than rent, even if the rental is "free", because I'm weird. But the convenience is wonderful - I can also act like a horribly-modern person and use Amazon to watch NOW something that it might take me five minutes to fetch from a shelf. Yes, it is often more convenient - and just as free, just as good and just as sound - to stream something than to fetch a disc I already own. Again: I will continue to own - and whenever funds allow, buy - the discs. But I watch more these days through Amazon's Prime service, regardless of owning them.

Originally Posted by milo bloom View Post
My DVD purchasing has become more focused. I'm more likely to spend $20 on a new or even used copy of a Japanese kaiju film because it's something I'm more sure of wanting. Most of the other stuff I can just stream.
There's certainly a shuffling of priorities, I agree. Yes, something may vanish online. Yes, ownership is critical. And yes, I want to be able to choose myself what and when to watch things. But, at the same time, knowing that something is likely to be available to stream free allows me to relax a little and either buy something else that isn't or nothing. I already have more than I can finish watching for many years, so putting off buying most/many 'new' films - and particularly TV shows - because they'll probably be free 'at some point' is now a reasonable thing to assume.*

Originally Posted by milo bloom View Post
I see physical media going back to the laserdisc type of niche. We may still get some nice disc based releases of certain collectible films and such, and the price will also very likely go back up - if they can't make money on volume they'll make it on markup.
I sincerely hope not. I fear you're right - and with books, too - but I really, really hope not. If physical media - and property - starts to really wane across the board, that will be a very worrying societal sign, I think.**





*The problem here is that decreased sales now make some titles go out of print faster. So it's a definite guessing-game and juggling act to try and rank what to try and buy sooner rather than later. But streaming factors into those equations now, and makes them easier - and cheaper.

**Although personal property - and particularly the accumulation of clutter - is relatively historically recent, so... maybe it's a return to a more normal state of being!
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