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Movie Industry: Loss of Control Worse Than Piracy

samzenpus posted about 3 years ago | from the lesser-of-two-evils dept.

Piracy 360

tlhIngan writes "Miramax CEO Mike Lang has admitted to what we all suspected. The biggest worry is a distribution monopoly, not piracy. They saw what happened to the music industry with iTunes, and vowed to not lose control and be at the mercy of Apple or whoever becomes the dominant distributor. From the article: 'Lang, whose company today debuts the Blu-Ray version of the cult classic Pulp Fiction, emphasized that people don’t necessarily want to pirate, as long as they get what they want. “Innovate or die,” should be the motive of entertainment industry companies, where it’s key to listen to customers.'"

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Customers don't know what they want. (2)

bronney (638318) | about 3 years ago | (#37634658)

To quote a certain friend...

Re:Customers don't know what they want. (5, Insightful)

blahplusplus (757119) | about 3 years ago | (#37634792)

Not only that most customers are clueless morons. In the game industry they support - MMO's, DRM, and DLC. I remember when everyone was pissed that game companies had the nerve to charge you full price for an MMO while it was an online game and they charge you monthly. The fact that most people are so clueless and take it up the arse has pushed the game industry in hugely negative direction with games being chained to online and DLC'd to death.

Re:Customers don't know what they want. (1, Flamebait)

obarthelemy (160321) | about 3 years ago | (#37635028)

Thank god you're here to save us !

Re:Customers don't know what they want. (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#37635144)

Not only that most customers are clueless morons. In the game industry they support - MMO's, DRM, and DLC. I remember when everyone was pissed that game companies had the nerve to charge you full price for an MMO while it was an online game and they charge you monthly. The fact that most people are so clueless and take it up the arse has pushed the game industry in hugely negative direction with games being chained to online and DLC'd to death.

Actually, customers know exactly what they want, and the gaming industry prices itself accordingly. Just because you don't agree with a price scheme doesn't mean everyone else is clueles. It only means that you don't value the service(s) provided in the same way they do. The game industry will only price games at what people will pay - that is the law of supply and demand, and it won't change just because you think it's stupid.

Re:Customers don't know what they want. (5, Insightful)

tonywong (96839) | about 3 years ago | (#37634854)

The only reason they don't like iTunes is because it busted up their cartel. Period.

Given the choice between piracy (no income) and losing control (to Apple) they'd rather pick piracy. That is how bereft of thought these guys are, that there is no choice for them but to pick one or the other. No wonder Steve came in and took their lunch money.

Re:Customers don't know what they want. (2)

bronney (638318) | about 3 years ago | (#37634986)

Yup! I always thought Steam was a step in the right direction. If one day, indie developers can have their own store (like fraps), I would gladly buy direct. Steam however does a nice gamer hookup system like gamespy in the old days.

But you know, it isn't like there's anything the movie industry can do now. The decentralizing is just a matter of time.

Re:Customers don't know what they want. (3, Informative)

NoobixCube (1133473) | about 3 years ago | (#37635080)

www.desura.com

Re:Customers don't know what they want. (1)

bronney (638318) | about 3 years ago | (#37635180)

cool thanks :D

Re:Customers don't know what they want. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#37635210)

Indievania [indievania.com] (still in beta).

Re:Customers don't know what they want. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#37635114)

I say let the movie industry die.

It seems like almost everything they do these days is made with a sequel or four planned.
I just watched Green Lantern. You can tell they're hoping to make a few of them.
So.. they should. Make one every 6 months or year.
Make feature-length television but for fucks sake charge a reasonable amount for it.
Even if its not the best story in the world people wont mind as much if you only charged a few quid for it.
You got everyone to buy HD at home and its killing cinemas. Thats life, adapt or die.

Re:Customers don't know what they want. (4, Interesting)

CharlyFoxtrot (1607527) | about 3 years ago | (#37635286)

iTunes didn't bust up their distribution model the internet did, Apple was just there to seize on the disruption and capitalize on it with iTunes. The movie companies have already lost control of distribution, their movies are out there for download before they're even officially released. That genie isn't going back into its bottle. Of course they could keep reaching for that holy grail [moviedeaths.com] and drag their whole industry down the ravine by doing so.

Re:Customers don't know what they want. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#37635228)

I know what I want...I want to stop dealing with companies that are more interested in control and distribution the creation and production and as a result I haven't bought a CD in well over 4 years (though I admittedly have bought a handful of mp3s from amazon) and haven't bought or watched a movie in a movie theater in about a year and a half. I'm done with "big content". I've gone almost entirely indy productions and couldn't be happier.

Re:Customers don't know what they want. (1)

chucklebutte (921447) | about 3 years ago | (#37635346)

4 years? 1 years? Give me a break. The last movie I saw in a theater was Star Wars Ep 3. The last time I bought a CD was in 1997, The Slim Shady LP.

Sorry but I can not be fooled in to buying imaginary 1's and 0's on a piece of plastic that cost a nickel, especially when they charge $15.00~$65.00 for that same piece of plastic! So no sorry, you aren't getting anything out of my pockets not even the damn lint!

Shure, that's why Netflix... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#37634682)

... is driving dependable paying customers back to bittorrent!

Re:Shure, that's why Netflix... (1)

smash (1351) | about 3 years ago | (#37635472)

To be fair, I personally am willing to pay a reasonable fee to locate content quickly and easily and in high-def format.

Torrents are OK, but the quality varies massively. I can't stand rips with out-of-synch audio, people walking through the cinema, etc. By the time i sift through the 100 or so different versions of something, find one that is encoded in a format i want, actually of decent quality, its not worth my time (i work long hours). I'd rather just pay a few dollars and stream it or purchase it.

As the computer-literate customer base grows older and attains more disposable income at the expense of having plenty of free time, i suspect this trend is only going to grow.

Too little too late (5, Interesting)

cboslin (1532787) | about 3 years ago | (#37634706)

Does anyone even care what the DRM loving Media moguls think anymore? Hardly. Son, that horse has done left the barn....you all blew it big time!

Re:Too little too late (1)

gumbi west (610122) | about 3 years ago | (#37635072)

People who want to know what they will do with their products in the future?

Re:Too little too late (5, Insightful)

hairyfeet (841228) | about 3 years ago | (#37635074)

Wil Wheaton nailed it when he said "make it simple, make it cheap, and folks WILL buy it. Make it expensive and a pain to use? people will just BT". he gave a perfect example, he bought the Doctor Who episodes on iTunes and then when he crossed the Canadian border his videos wouldn't play so his first thought was 'If I would have just pirated it i'd be watching my shows now".

And THAT kind of bullshit is the problem. There are plenty of shows I'd buy online if they would give me them as .avi files to where i could just drop it on my thumbstick and play it on my netbook, or go to my dad's and stick it in his Nbox so we could watch together, but they won't so i just buy DVDs from the bargain bin and rip them to avi. This means there are plenty of shows I WOULD have bought but just decided it was too much of a PITA to deal.

The sooner they accept that piracy exists because they are offering an inferior product the better. That was something Jobs got when it came to media, make it simple, make it cheap, make it easy, and folks buy. Make it a stupid DRM infested royal PITA? Kiss those dollars goodbye.

Re:Too little too late (4, Insightful)

sjames (1099) | about 3 years ago | (#37635330)

While they're at it, they need to drop the un-skipable commercials and the stupid FBI warnings (great, I buy it like I'm supposed to and they thank me with an up-front threat). Next up, they can stop screwing with the hardware. Their stupid (and broken) encryption demands is why you can't instantly switch video feeds. They add cost to every device and kill innovation.

Re:Too little too late (4, Insightful)

hairyfeet (841228) | about 3 years ago | (#37635430)

Hell you want to talk about killing innovation look no further than the Nbox. if you haven't tried one they are great, a little box you plug a USB drive into and voila! your movies play. Great for someone like my dad. But the way the bullshit laws are there is no way to legally get content for it thanks to DMCA and DRM copyright bullshit.

There should be an .avi file on every DVD, in fact there should be two: One widescreen and the other 4x3 format, so folks like my dad could just pop in the disk and drag their new movie in .avi form straight to their Nbox. Real came up with a player that would have made things that simple, but even though it kept copyright protection (basically it just made a disk image) the courts shut them down, thanks to the lovely bribery result that is DMCA.

Just one more way they are holding everyone back and fucking themselves at the same time. my dad loves old war pictures and cop shows. if he could just pop onto Amazon and buy the movies and shows for an affordable price in .avi, so he could just click and drag onto his Nbox? He'd be buying movies and shows constantly. But because he has to call me, have me come pick up the disc, format shift it for him, and put it on his Nbox? he doesn't bother unless it is something he really really REALLY wants to watch. So there is another pile of sales just pissed away, all thanks to DRM horseshit.

DRM wasn't the right answer then and it's not now. (1)

jbn-o (555068) | about 3 years ago | (#37635490)

Wil Wheaton nailed it when he said "make it simple, make it cheap, and folks WILL buy it. Make it expensive and a pain to use? people will just BT". he gave a perfect example, he bought the Doctor Who episodes on iTunes and then when he crossed the Canadian border his videos wouldn't play so his first thought was 'If I would have just pirated it i'd be watching my shows now".

I'm glad to see that he's coming around to seeing this from a more wisened user's perspective, but apparently he still has much to learn about doing business with Apple and becoming more articulate about defining his interests. In 2006 Wheaton lost all of his iTunes tracks while "upgrading" to some version of iTunes. Wheaton contacted Apple and then Apple restored the lost tracks to his account [digitalcitizen.info] . Wheaton treated this as a reason to do business with Apple ("If you make a purchase from the iTunes Music Store, and something horrible happens and you lose all your music, Apple will give you a one-time only do-over to replace all of your purchased music, free of charge.") instead of looking at this as a problem to be solved. Removing all DRM and letting users make copies of the media puts users in a position where users can rescue themselves from unfortunate losses. Users ought to be able to re-download purchased media as many times as they wish, and share tracks as well. Magnatune.com, by contrast, does all of this: they never got into the DRM game [magnatune.com] so Magnatune has no (apparently halfway) Apple-style backtracking to go through on DRM. Magnatune contributes to FLOSS player programs; programs that give technically-minded users the opportunity to inspect programs before you run them so users don't walk into the trap Wheaton experienced in 2006 with iTunes. Magnatune lets users re-download purchased tracks as much as the customer wishes upon supplying an email address at purchase time (for logging in). Magnatune also lets you share membership downloads with some friends [magnatune.com] . Purchasing media from Magnatune means you can play the media as much as you want without anyone tracking what you play, where you play it, or restricting what you use to play the media they sell.

Those who don't study history... (2)

mandelbr0t (1015855) | about 3 years ago | (#37634716)

Hooray, there's a smart studio executive out there! Good luck with the innovation -- if it's any good, I'll probably buy it.

Re:Those who don't study history... (1)

Zancarius (414244) | about 3 years ago | (#37635004)

Hooray, there's a smart studio executive out there! Good luck with the innovation -- if it's any good, I'll probably buy it.

More like: Good luck with the innovation--even if it's good, none of his peers will buy into it.

Re:Those who don't study history... (2)

ksd1337 (1029386) | about 3 years ago | (#37635116)

none of his peers will buy into it.

None of them will seed either! Selfish leeches!

The biggest problem with the movie industry... (5, Insightful)

joaommp (685612) | about 3 years ago | (#37634722)

... is that the quantity of movies even worth watching is decreasing by the minute, let alone the quantity of movies that might be worth pirating.

Re:The biggest problem with the movie industry... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#37634774)

Have you see they've remade Footloose?

Re:The biggest problem with the movie industry... (2)

Farmer Tim (530755) | about 3 years ago | (#37634852)

At least that has a bit more plot to it than Rock'em-Sock'em Robots, The Motion Picture [imdb.com] . Still not necessary, though.

Re:The biggest problem with the movie industry... (5, Insightful)

jedidiah (1196) | about 3 years ago | (#37634976)

There is simply no point in remaking Footloose when I can probably buy the original in the $5 bargain bin at Walmart.

Piracy is not the biggest threat to Hollywood, their own back catalog is.

Re:The biggest problem with the movie industry... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#37635126)

"Step-up 7, look, we dance around old cars!"

Re:The biggest problem with the movie industry... (2)

selex (551564) | about 3 years ago | (#37634904)

There has always been a over abundance of crappy movies (Alexis de Tocqueville said it was art in general when dealing with a democracy/republic). There were always crappy books, music, movies, etc. The distribution has changed and production has changed. There were probably crappy handwritten manuscripts before movable type was created, but afterwards the was an explosion of crappy manuscripts because it became easy to create. Its easier and faster to create a movie now then 20 years ago. So yes you will see an increase is crap.

There are some really good movies that have come out lately, you just need to sift through the crap to get there, and that is how its always been. If everything was awesome, then nothing would be awesome. You need crap to gauge greatness.

So I find the "increase in crap" argument not getting to the problem. Copyrights allow the control of distribution. Computers copy information. The internet transmits information. So controlling the distribution is impossible. So the "industries" need to adjust the way they distribute their art. Long ago I used to pirate movies. I got Netflix (both DVD and streaming) and I no longer pirate movies. Why? Because for $17 a month I have unlimited movies to watch, I get to pick the schedule, the content, and the medium (PS3, desktop or phone). Its $17 a month were I was spending more then that buying movies. I haven't bought a movie in months because I can get it on Netflix. They changed the distribution to my liking, and I am okay with the way it works (I was upset when they doubled the price for Netflix, when then split the services so now I have to manage 2 seperate queues, but I will still use it because it still gives me a superior product to Google Movies, Blockbuster, Amazon, iTunes, etc). They need to fix the distribution.

Selex

Re:The biggest problem with the movie industry... (2)

jedidiah (1196) | about 3 years ago | (#37634988)

...like I just said.

Hollywood has to compete with the last 100 years of it's own best material. Technology makes it easier and easier to access all of that material way in a convenient and legal manner. You can just watch stuff from your own media stockpile instead of buying something new.

Plus, Hollywood also has to compete with every new distraction that's been invented.

Re:The biggest problem with the movie industry... (1)

hedwards (940851) | about 3 years ago | (#37635326)

To an extent that's true, but chances are good that nearly all the movies you've loved are stories that have been told before. Movies are a tough proposition because ultimately they end up being the same thing only different. Often times the difference between a great movie and a poor or marginal one is how well the cast and crew twist the canon to create something new and special.

Re:The biggest problem with the movie industry... (3)

hjf (703092) | about 3 years ago | (#37635016)

Netflix recently started operating in Latin America, for about USD 10 a month, streaming only (no mail option, of course, since they don't have a physical presence). Guess what? No one is subscribing because it only has old movies. "Hunt for Red October" old.

I read that Telecom, my country's main internet provider, is starting a streaming service. http://www.infobae.com/notas/609633-Arnet-Play-el-nuevo-servicio-multimedia-de-Telecom.html [infobae.com]

La oferta inicial de Arnet Play es de $20 durante los primeros seis meses (luego pasará a $40); a eso deben sumársele $10 por el set top box; y, en caso de alquilar los últimos estrenos y contenidos especiales, se abonarán entre $9 y $16 extras.

“Es un cargo que los estudios de Hollywood imponen. Aunque quisiéramos, no podríamos dejar de cobrarlo. Ni siquiera abonándolo nosotros para hacer más atractiva la oferta”, mencionaron en Telecom.

Translation: Arnet Play's initial offering is USD5 for the first 6 months (then it's USD 10); to that you need to add USD 2,50 for a set top box, and if you want the latest movies and special contents, between $2 and $4 extra. It's an extra that Hollywood imposes, even if we wanted to, we can't not charge for it. Not even paying for it ourselves to make the offer more attractive, Telecom mentioned."

What the hell, hollywood?

Re:The biggest problem with the movie industry... (1)

marcosdumay (620877) | about 3 years ago | (#37635142)

I'd seccond you here, if it only was trendy for slashdotters to do it, and add that I'm from Brazil, what turns your anecdonte into a multi-country anecdonte.

Netflix is offering a free month here, you decide if you subscribe latter. Most people that I know get the free month, but don't go into subscribing because the movies are old (classics not included) and it would still be cheaper to rent them.

Re:The biggest problem with the movie industry... (1)

hedwards (940851) | about 3 years ago | (#37635318)

A good movie is a good movie. There's still plenty of quality films coming out, it's just that most of the crappy older films were never preserved and if they were preserved were unlikely to be transfered to a format which most people have available to them. VHS, and now DVD or Bluray.

New movies aren't really that hard to come up with, the real trouble is that it's a lot more expensive to make a movie than it was under the studio system. When the studio has everything from writers and crew to actors under contract it's a lot easier to turn a profit while still turning out something that resembles art. On top of that, most movies during the golden age were take it or leave it propositions, if you missed the movie the week it was out, you probably wouldn't get to see it again.

These days, not only can you see it, but the chances are good that if you liked it you own a copy, or at least have access to it via a rental shop.

Re:The biggest problem with the movie industry... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#37635036)

In case you haven't noticed, the world is in a giant fucking DEPRESSION! Jobs, money, culture, and overall happiness has declined. Do you think a society like that will foster quality products and content? Hell no. As some politicians would say, "it's the new normal". Oh ya, loving every minute of it....uhuh...

Re:The biggest problem with the movie industry... (1)

NoobixCube (1133473) | about 3 years ago | (#37635098)

It's true. I have a 500GB monthly cap, and some movies aren't worth the 700MB and half hour it would take to pirate them.

Re:The biggest problem with the movie industry... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#37635280)

Do you mean the rate of new movies worth watching, rather than the quantity? Otherwise you're saying movies that were once worth watching, are no longer worthwhile.

Re:The biggest problem with the movie industry... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#37635292)

Unless someone is actively destroying all existing copies of movies worth watching you are a bloody moron.

Re:The biggest problem with the movie industry... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#37635308)

Truth. It's near effortless to download, but there's nothing I care about seeing.

Re:The biggest problem with the movie industry... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#37635382)

... is that the quantity of movies even worth watching is decreasing by the minute, let alone the quantity of movies that might be worth pirating.

Not so. Every movie worth watching yesterday is still worth watching today. Meanwhile, ten new movies were released today. Sure, nine of them are utter dreck, but the tenth is somewhere between decent and quite good (depending on who you ask).

Say there were N movies worth watching yesterday. Now you have N+1 worth watching today. :)

Re:The biggest problem with the movie industry... (1)

smash (1351) | about 3 years ago | (#37635482)

Agreed 100%. Its a sad state of affairs when you can watch something for free, and feel unjustly deprived of your time by watching it. #firstworldproblem

Step 1, no DRM (5, Informative)

exomondo (1725132) | about 3 years ago | (#37634732)

You can't prevent me from giving away a copy of a movie i purchased without creating an inconvenience when i want to use it legally, so get rid of DRM.

Make it affordable, obviously.

Make it accessible, if it's harder than downloading a torrent then you'll fail, people will pay but you can't make it harder than getting it for free.

Make it global, nothing is more annoying (ok maybe not entirely true) than finding out you can't get particular content because your region isn't licensed for it.

Re:Step 1, no DRM (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#37634808)

I think they'd much rather buy the government and have them pass laws that punish citizens unreasonably. This way at least

Re:Step 1, no DRM (3, Interesting)

AwesomeMcgee (2437070) | about 3 years ago | (#37634842)

Thankyou. Free is easier and that's the simple truth right now. I really wish there was a legal way to get any movie in 15 minutes. I'll pay, really. If netflix streamed what they have on mail request i'd stop torrenting altogether.

Re:Step 1, no DRM (4, Insightful)

EdIII (1114411) | about 3 years ago | (#37635066)

'll pay, really. If netflix streamed what they have on mail request i'd stop torrenting altogether

I'll up you one.

I hate advertisements, water marks, and disruptive in-show advertisements SO MUCH, that I would pay Netflix $75-100 per month for full streaming access to everything they have, plus recent TV shows.

Does not have to be 1080p either. 720p is just fine.

Does not have to be all the TV shows either. Something like 20 shows for $14.99, 40 shows for 24.99$, etc. I get to pick them.

As long as you deliver me that content without advertisements, and in an easy consumable fashion, I will PAY MORE.

I am not interested in maintaining a huge inventory of DVDs any longer. I can rip them, but it costs me 5-7 gigs each to store them. Of course, I use RAID and NAS. My actual costs of maintaining DRM free access to my DVDs is ultimately more than $50 per month once I factor in hardware costs.

The only drawback, is that I cannot maintain perfect anonymity (cash purchases) about what I watch. However, I would give that up (which is huge to me) just to be able to access larger catalogues of movies on demand and not pay for the costs of personal storage.

 

Re:Step 1, no DRM (3, Interesting)

kangsterizer (1698322) | about 3 years ago | (#37635128)

I'd pay $100 for 720p or above access to all movies, all shows, anytime i want, even the stuff that was on tv the same day, or a couple of days earlier, and movies as soon as they hit DVD/Bluray (ideally, just after cinema in fact). Heck, that'd be well worth it. I might even go higher.

I'd also pay $50 for dvd or above access to relatively recent movies and shows.

But i'm never going to pay $30 for old movies, old shows, various qualities, various availability, that's stupid. And it's hard to get better, specially when your country doesn't have netflix.

In fact, most of the tv shows can only be acquired if you pirate them. And for movies, you gotta wait almost a year to be able to buy them bluray (2 years for stream); who are they kidding?

Re:Step 1, no DRM (1)

pknoll (215959) | about 3 years ago | (#37635146)

Curiously enough, you can actually have something a lot like this, right now.

We've stopped subscribing to cable/satellite, and now watch everything on an Apple TV. Through iTunes, you can rent (with a budget of $100/month) 20 movies in HD (at $4.99 each), or buy 30 TV episodes (at $2.99 each in HD, if bought individually); or any combination. You get to pick what you want, and you pay only for what you watch, so in months when you're busy with other things you can pay nothing at all, if you like.

Apple did recently remove the option to rent HD television episodes at $1.99, but you can buy full seasons ("season pass") which typically offer decent savings.

Re:Step 1, no DRM (1)

ColdWetDog (752185) | about 3 years ago | (#37635322)

And then, when Apple's authorization servers go tits up, you can't even play movies you BOUGHT from them.

Not a chance that I'm buying anything from those Bozos again. Apple makes fine hardware and a great OS. Streaming / Cloud services, not so much.

Re:Step 1, no DRM (1)

smash (1351) | about 3 years ago | (#37635504)

True, but i think "buying" content is on the way out. or it is for me in any case. I can count the number of times i have re-watched movies purchased as of late on 1 hand. You get 48hrs of replays on appleTV for free. if i want to watch it again outside of that time-frame, then so be it, i'll just rent it again.

Its not like a traditional rental where i need to go to the video library and re-rent it, return it, etc. A couple of bucks is cheap enough to just re-rent IF and when i need it again. Even if i re-rent 2-3 times, i'm still coming out cheaper than having purchased the movie.

So... for me, why purchase at all?

Re:Step 1, no DRM (1)

sjames (1099) | about 3 years ago | (#37635492)

That's more expensive than you think. You can get a season (20-24 episodes) for more like $20 on DVD, why would you rather pay twice as much to iTunes when they don't even have to bother producing physical media?

Yes, there's DRM on DVDs, but it's so weak that people don't even realize their player/burner software cracks it.

The dowenload options are in the right direction, but they're not really there yet.

Re:Step 1, no DRM (2)

smash (1351) | about 3 years ago | (#37635494)

This. My time is too short to go looking for dodgy rips or cinema cams of something on bit-torrent. A couple of bucks per movie to stream and i'll gladly pay for it.

I don't want to have to store hundreds of DVDs or spend terabytes of disk to maintain a media library.

Re:Step 1, no DRM (1)

Zancarius (414244) | about 3 years ago | (#37635026)

Make it global, nothing is more annoying (ok maybe not entirely true) than finding out you can't get particular content because your region isn't licensed for it.

This is a big issue with me. I've had relatives overseas in the past want to send DVDs only to find out that it's technically illegal, and the region encoding prohibits playback on standard DVD players. Obviously, it's trivial to circumvent and re-burn (or play under a Linux-based HTPC)--if need be--but that's probably a violation of the DMCA's anti-circumvention clause.

Re:Step 1, no DRM (1)

QuasiSteve (2042606) | about 3 years ago | (#37635054)

Precursor: I don't believe that there is any way to fully compete with the 'piracy' channels and to think otherwise is, I believe, chasing a pipe dream.

That said...

You can't prevent me from giving away a copy of a movie i purchased without creating an inconvenience when i want to use it legally, so get rid of DRM.

Presuming that industry still wanted to somewhat prevent you from just uploading the file straight to the pirate bay... what if it were a natural form of DRM? E.g. your name is inserted, encoded, as a watermark somewhere that lets the copy be traced back to you. Let's say as part of the end credits so there wouldn't even be any argument about 'invisible' watermarking technology messing up your re-encoding for iPad (or whatever). Would that be acceptable?
( note that I'm not saying anything about repercussions should that copy be found in the wild as there's a whole angry mob just waiting for the opportunity to jump at the opportunity to come up with "what if somebody hacked my network and distributed it!? Why should I be fined!?" excuses. )

Make it affordable, obviously.

Obviously. But now define affordable.

Where I'm from, $4.99 for a movie would not be considered affordable. For that matter, $1.99 wouldn't be - doesn't matter if that's less than a burger which they enjoy for less than 10 minutes and then again half an hour later if you know what I mean. They're cheap bastards. If anything at all, the people here would much rather see a monthly flat fee for an as-much-as-you-want return at, say, $25. In essence, something like Netflix... but without the extremely limited catalog and the ability to actually save the videos.

Make it accessible, if it's harder than downloading a torrent then you'll fail, people will pay but you can't make it harder than getting it for free.

But isn't it always going to be harder?

Streaming of course is probably not an issue to setup (the pirate bay / torrent downloads ares not very user-friendly compared to e.g. a Roku box that streams direct to your TV, so it would have to at least be similar to the latter) - but for the media companies you'd at least need some manner of account.. and payment information has to be given.. you need to keep an eye on expenses and billing, etc.
For the free alternatives, there is no such hassle.

Make it global, nothing is more annoying (ok maybe not entirely true) than finding out you can't get particular content because your region isn't licensed for it.

This, of course, is going to be one of the major stumbling blocks. There are a lot of fractured interest groups globally, that often have laws on their side, that make distribution worldwide difficult at best. You can already see this at YouTube where some music videos from I believe it was Warner Music are not available to Europe. But if you then click the next result for that same Music Video, you're likely to get the official Vevo channel version backed by that very same Warner Music.

This is the one section where I would think the media companies would very much agree with you - after all, there's a lot of cost that can be reduced if you have a single distribution channel for the whole world and local interest groups be damned. But the fact that they haven't already makes me inclined to think that this isn't nearly as easy as either side would like. Either that or there's some crazy tax-related benefits to having a ton of local distributors for online content.
( traditional content obviously has to deal with physical distribution, warehousing, rack space etc. that is best dealt with by local distributors )

Re:Step 1, no DRM (1)

planimal (2454610) | about 3 years ago | (#37635094)

stopped reading when i saw an obvious flaw within your first retort. welcome to the world of video capture and editing(in this case, redaction)

Re:Step 1, no DRM (1)

marcosdumay (620877) | about 3 years ago | (#37635196)

1 - Repeat after me: "watermarks are not DRM". Ok, they have some similarities, one is that both fail to work, but for different reasons.

2 - It's trivial to have a distribution channel easier than downloading pirated movies. You just need a nice bandwidth, a hight quality coppy (that excludes DRM, sorry) and hight availability. Also, it doesn't hurt to have an as universal translation as you can do. Of course, also without a too hight price*. Movie distributors just aren't interested, one day they'll be.

3 - How do all those bloggers get a global audience? That is how you do global distribution. I really don't understand why you think it is so hard.

* Sorry, I can't stipulate a price here. That is what market research is for. Whatever price you put, some people will pirate. That's ok, your goal is to maximize revenues, not fight piracy.

Re:Step 1, no DRM (1)

exomondo (1725132) | about 3 years ago | (#37635214)

what if it were a natural form of DRM? E.g. your name is inserted, encoded, as a watermark somewhere that lets the copy be traced back to you.

Yeah cos that would be impossible to get rid of.

Obviously. But now define affordable.

Where I'm from, $4.99 for a movie would not be considered affordable. For that matter, $1.99 wouldn't be

Where do you live the $1.99 isn't affordable for a movie?! Gees most people find that to be affordable for a song on iTunes.

But isn't it always going to be harder?

No, load up iTunes, search for the song, download. You'd do the same for movies.

For the free alternatives, there is no such hassle.

For a normal person putting in payment details and monitoring spend isn't a hassle, it's very basic and requires almost no effort, again, see the popularity of iTunes.

Give customers a decent product (5, Informative)

NiceGeek (126629) | about 3 years ago | (#37634734)

I know an Canadian artist who is also signed to Warner/Sire in the US. Her latest album was a bit of a departure from her last one and Sire was too scared to support it in the US so she signed a distribution deal with a indie label for this album. Currently this album is #2 on the iTunes Pop chart and #18 overall.

tl;dr - Record labels are run by idiots who only want to release music for the lowest common denominator.

Re:Give customers a decent product (2)

Baloroth (2370816) | about 3 years ago | (#37634922)

Yes. The lowest common denominator represents the largest amount of cash. For music this is hardly a problem, it is pretty cheap and easy to record your own album and get it out there.

For a movie, however, the budget required to satisfy consumers in the US is pretty high, which makes indie titles more or less a no go. Not to mention marketing or actually getting it into theaters. Unfortunately, the investment required also means studios don't want to innovate: they want to go with a tried and true formula that is guaranteed to make them lots of money. What we need is more good directors who are wealthy/ powerful enough to create whatever projects they want. In other words, more Christopher Nolan's or Joss Whedon's: people with resources and connections and the will to innovate. Even they often get shut down, but they can get pretty far.

Re:Give customers a decent product (1)

TheCouchPotatoFamine (628797) | about 3 years ago | (#37634944)

SO TRUE. however, they will never give us a decent "product", because you don't know what their "product" IS. They sell ADVERTISING. What did you THINK it was all about??

Innovate or Die? (5, Insightful)

Freaky Spook (811861) | about 3 years ago | (#37634742)

Why innovate when you can legislate?

That seems to be what is going on these days.

Re:Innovate or Die? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#37634872)

Why innovate when you can legislate?

That seems to be what is going on these days.

That's likely the innovation he was talking about.

Re:Innovate or Die? (1)

Zancarius (414244) | about 3 years ago | (#37635078)

Why innovate when you can legislate?

That seems to be what is going on these days.

I wish this weren't true, but given the news that came out today regarding the Olson TZ database, it seems that more and more companies are moving toward litigation as a viable business model.

I can see it now. Welcome to America: Our only export is litigation. Oh, and we have a patent on that, too.

Burn (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#37634788)

Yeah, burn in hell motherfuckers

...whose company today debuts the Blu-Ray... (1)

grolschie (610666) | about 3 years ago | (#37634794)

Pulp Fiction has been out on Blu-Ray since 2009.

Re:...whose company today debuts the Blu-Ray... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#37634838)

FAIL! from a torrent site's story? (or propaganda?)

Re:...whose company today debuts the Blu-Ray... (1)

Baloroth (2370816) | about 3 years ago | (#37634940)

Hmm, TFA is wrong too, but maybe they meant it debuts on Netflix.

MPAA are morons (5, Insightful)

mewsenews (251487) | about 3 years ago | (#37634800)

i honestly tried to grasp the logic set forth in the article but all i can see is "wahhhh we don't like the itunes model". if you don't want to get swallowed by itunes like the music industry did, create your own digital storefront. you never will because this implies actually building something rather than sitting back and letting the royalty checks flow in, you lazy, litigious, delusional assholes

Well.. (5, Insightful)

Wovel (964431) | about 3 years ago | (#37634804)

Had the music industry not insisted on DRM, iTunes would have never had anything like the power it ended up with..

Re:Well.. (3, Insightful)

Trogre (513942) | about 3 years ago | (#37634990)

That is truly delicious iRony there...

Cartel. (1)

VJmes (2449518) | about 3 years ago | (#37634816)

I suppose running a production AND distribution cartel is far more profitable.

Relevant Quote (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#37634974)

I suppose running a production AND distribution cartel is far more profitable.

"We are now in the unique position to form an international cartel to control not only production, but distribution!" ... "There is one obstacle - Silicon Valley"
-Christopher Walken's character in A View to a Kill

Prophetic?

No business model can compete with free (2, Insightful)

blarkon (1712194) | about 3 years ago | (#37634856)

In the past people might throw a buck at a creator if they pirated something because they felt a little bad about it. Today, with piracy normalized (hey everyone does it), most people don't feel any nagging sense that they might have done something "not right" when they consume a creator's output without providing any form of compensation.

This is because deep down most people believe that entertainment is an optional extra. People make the rational decision when given the option of paying for it or not paying for it. They save their resources and pay for the necessities.

Perhaps in the long run, people will be less likely to invest in creating expensive entertainment ( lets face it, the SyFy Channel has pretty much bailed on it already because their existing "make money on the DVD sales" model collapsed). Whether the lack of expensively produced entertainment is actually a bad thing is another discussion entirely.

Re:No business model can compete with free (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#37635018)

Perhaps in the long run, people will be less likely to invest in creating expensive entertainment ( lets face it, the SyFy Channel has pretty much bailed on it already because their existing "make money on the DVD sales" model collapsed).

Sci Fi didn't get rich from DVD sales because most of their projects weren't "expensive" investments into good shows/movies. That shouldn't be a surprise; crappy made-for-TV B movies don't sell a lot of DVDs. Their choices for TV shows and overall vision for the channel tended to be schizophrenic too, which certainly didn't help them establish the kind of fan bases that buy DVD sets.

Re:No business model can compete with free (5, Insightful)

airfoobar (1853132) | about 3 years ago | (#37635032)

If what you say were true the industries in question wouldn't be having record breaking profits every year for the past several years. Netflix, Hulu, Spotify and similar services would never have gotten off the ground. iTunes wouldn't be selling mp3s if people weren't willing to "throw a buck at the creator" -- where "creator" is used very loosely in this particular context -- and movie studio bosses wouldn't be complaining about how BIG iTunes has gotten if people didn't want to pay for its services. You wouldn't have studies showing that pirates spend more on entertainment than the average person (which makes sense, because they are the ones who actually spend more time on entertainment). The "piracy is killing X" line has been repeated enough times in the past century and every time it turned out to be a big lie, please stop repeating it already.

Re:No business model can compete with free (1)

Zancarius (414244) | about 3 years ago | (#37635124)

In the past people might throw a buck at a creator if they pirated something because they felt a little bad about it. Today, with piracy normalized (hey everyone does it), most people don't feel any nagging sense that they might have done something "not right" when they consume a creator's output without providing any form of compensation.

This is because deep down most people believe that entertainment is an optional extra. People make the rational decision when given the option of paying for it or not paying for it. They save their resources and pay for the necessities.

This is probably true, but I'm not sure how well the statistics back it up. It's both feasible and very likely that the majority of people would rather screw the content creator over rather than toss out a little bit of money in tribute. I do have some faith that people are generally honest, except in those cases where they feel they're paying for an inferior product or are getting screwed by the company selling it. I think that to a certain degree, that might be the mindset most people are currently in: e.g., "I'm limited with what I can do with this DVD, I can't copy it, I can do much with it, and it's inferior to pirated goods."

That said, anecdotal evidence from my own behavior and that of many of my peers suggests that if people like something, they'll generally be honest and buy it. All of my music acquisition, for example, over the last several years has been through online purchases with Amazon. It's relatively inexpensive, I like music, and it's exceedingly simple, straightforward, and painless. While I could have found the same things for free, I'm guaranteed to have a reasonable quality recording via a purchase (maybe not value-added, but you're not guaranteed to have any minimum level of quality if you pirate a song), and I'm now likely to leave it on Amazon's cloud to access elsewhere.

I realize we're comparing apples and oranges here, music versus movies, but I think it's a reasonable comparison. Both are optional and both are entertainment. Of course, I'm not about to assume that anyone but a handful of people exhibit the same consumption habits I do. The success of Amazon's MP3 service does hint that they do, but without any hard numbers to back it up, I can only speculate to add to the discussion.

Perhaps in the long run, people will be less likely to invest in creating expensive entertainment ( lets face it, the SyFy Channel has pretty much bailed on it already because their existing "make money on the DVD sales" model collapsed). Whether the lack of expensively produced entertainment is actually a bad thing is another discussion entirely.

This is a good point. Market forces--and certainly the economy--are going to probably force content creators toward inexpensive means of production. Maybe that would be a good thing, considering the average quality of most things coming out of Hollywood these days. Yet there's plenty of programs that were produced on a shoestring budget that were far better than more expensive films.

In a way, I'd rather hope that a lesser investment pool would produce fewer but higher quality products. Unfortunately, given the entertainment industry's behavior over the last 10-15 years, I don't feel particularly optimistic.

Re:No business model can compete with free (1)

hjf (703092) | about 3 years ago | (#37635138)

Speak for yourself. I don't want to be bothered downloading everything I want to watch. I want to watch a movie NOW, like you can with netflix. The problem with the idiots at hollywood is that they're just blinded with greed. I'm pretty sure lots of people would pay $10 a month if you could get decent movies, in HD, streaming it *right now*, instead of having to wait a day for that 720p BD-rip to download.

I'm "only" 28 years old, and I like cable. I like to change channels and stumble across stuff. I don't want to be bothered managing a stupid queue of movies I want to watch and wait until Netflix can mail me that DVD (because it's not on streaming). And I'd like to have the option to watch a movie "any time" if I want to.

But one thing cable channels need to cut are commercials. Period. No commercials whatsoever. No stupid station IDs jumping all around. No graphic overlays taking up half screen to tell me the show that's going to premiere in a fucking MONTH (FOX, I'M TALKING TO YOU).

Also, from your UID, your arguments against paying for stuff, and the fact that you mentioned SyFy make me thing you're just an average amercan white male geek. Probably in college. Hell, probably even using the University's pipes to torrent - anyway, the thing is, "most people" aren't white male geeks. "most people" simply don't like Sci-Fi, they don't like complex stories, they don't like alternate universes, etc. If any, SyFy's model is collapsed because they targeted to a "niche" market... and not the "commercially viable" niche market of Rolex and Rolls Royce, but rather, the niche markets of geeks that know how to download stuff for free. Heh, how would I not know about your kind? I own a fucking comic book store! Way too often some idiot walks in and points out that you can download comics for free.

Re:No business model can compete with free (1)

omglolbah (731566) | about 3 years ago | (#37635216)

To make that point fairly simply:

I've paid for spotify since it was released in Norway. 99 NOK per month ever since. I have stopped downloading music as I no longer have a need to get the files that way.....

Hell, they even let me sync directly from the million file library directly to my phone via wifi for listening to on my commute...

Now give me that for movies and TV series please...

Re:No business model can compete with free (1)

fermion (181285) | about 3 years ago | (#37635200)

There was a time when radio played a lot more songs, not just singles but entire albums. It was trivial to for someone to patch a tape recorder into the radio, or even buy a tape recorder/radio combination, and record the album. At this time, any patch cable or tape recorder with radio clearly constituted a device to circumvent copyright, and it amazes me that such things were allowed to be sold. What is also amazing is that we still bought albums. It was not because of the marginal loss in quality from the analog copying. It was because it was what we did. The cover art and liner notes made the price less annoying. The point is that, at least for pop music, LPs were able to compete with free.

The piracy was even more normalized than that. One person would by an LP or CD and copy it onto to tape for everyone else. Of course when we got CD recorders, we could copy with no generational loss. All this is really an aside as what the industry became worried about was that everyone in the world could share with everyone in the world, but really it was the CD, and the excessive price, that really resulted in the unintended consequence of creating a world in which the marginal price of a track is zero.

There will always be investment in expensive entertainment. What might be different is the profits may be reduced and may be distributed differently.

Re:No business model can compete with free (1)

blarkon (1712194) | about 3 years ago | (#37635508)

Part of the issue there was quality. A cassette you purchased had a higher fidelity than the one you recorded off the radio. When you played the cassette a lot the sound quality degraded. You bought the album (or CD) because while you had the song, you had the song on your cassettes at a much lower quality than it sounded like on the radio or on a cassette purchased from the store. Today you can get a copy that's indistinguishable from what you can purchase - in the past you couldn't (well you probably could if you had insanely expensive kit and you payed good money for cassettes where one cost about three times as much as the cheap bulk packs you could get from the supermarket.

Nice quote... (5, Insightful)

Junta (36770) | about 3 years ago | (#37634888)

people don’t necessarily want to pirate, as long as they get what they want.

If you admit that, why do you refuse to give people what they want?

I want to convert my media into various formats for playback on various devices without DRM fouling the process.

I want to import your media into my video library and never have to physically sort through media to watch what I want (though I do like having shelved copies of media to see, I don't actually want to have to deal with them day to day).

I want to play your content locally, rather than streaming it over my internet connection and incur the wrath of lower bitrates, slow seeking, and service outages right when I want to watch something.

I want to manage all my content in a single place and not have to open a different application or website depending on which publisher/distributer just happened to kind of/sort of give it to me.

Currently, I can have *all* of this, but only if I either go through the tedium of keeping up with how to remove DRM which frequently requires peculiar setups I may or may not have, or download it from someone who has too much time on their hands and breaks your DRM anyway. For me the problem is not that I don't want to pay for the content, it's that the quality of the illegal content is higher than the legal. I do actually refrain entirely because I just don't feel like going through the trouble legally or illegally, it's just not worth my time and energy. That could easily change if movies were as manageable as mp3s purchased through itunes or amazon.

Re:Nice quote... (5, Interesting)

Trogre (513942) | about 3 years ago | (#37635024)

Unfortunately in many cases the only way to even get the content one wants is by piracy.

Consider the original Star Wars trilogy. The only way to see the theatrical versions in HD (or even anything more than LaserDisc quality) is to download or otherwise obtain fan-edited versions, which have been meticulously reconstructed from several different sources. Official versions just don't exist, except deep in Lucasfilm vaults and probably won't see the light of day again until they have degraded beyond a usable condition.

All those "make sure you're getting the genuine product" ads can bite me.

Re:Nice quote... (1)

cboslin (1532787) | about 3 years ago | (#37635276)

Couldn't agree more.

If I can not play it on all my Linux computers (handheld 'smart' VoIP phone; netbook; laptop, Desktop, eventually a Linux Tablet) than I will not purchase it.

No Root ~ Not smart! (very few so called smart phones allow root access, therefore they are NOT smart!)

DRM is why I will never purchase a Blu Ray player, 1080p is good enough and even my old Nokia N800 would play that level of high definition video. You can bet my next Android will be rootable or I will not buy it. And the songs and videos I purchase will be DRM free as well.

Two other non-DRM issues impacting consumers ability to consume content are throttling and capping of bandwidth.

Coming fast to a cable Internet provider near you, are bandwidth caps. Back in 2006, they knew a typical household would need a minimum of 300 Gb of bandwidth per month...what was the first cap they considered, only 50 Gb. Duh moment. Now they are settling on 200 Gb or 250 Gb monthly caps. Insanity. (Really can kick your butt when you are forced to auto-update your software, talk about a mistake! Most so called security holes require local access and I do not know about you, but I am not giving anyone the keys to my place, nor the passwords to my computer any time soon.)

As for throttling, restricting, limiting...; this directly impacts the play back of content every day for me. I can not tell you the number of times that I have wanted to watch something on CBS.com or other website only to have the cable Internet provider restrict the 16Mb/2Mb I am paying for to less than 100Kb/30Kb. The only choice was to download the content in order to be able to watch it. I would rather just watch it, but am forced to download in order to stream successfully. Of course its convenient to use my PCs hard drive like a VCR recorder and time swap. (Deciding when its convenient for me to watch it) Here FireFox and DownloadHelper are your friends as is the ability to search for content online. And thankfully Flash is dying, good riddance! There is nothing you can not watch, you just have to find the website...something I might not have done had the Cable Providers not throttled my upstream bandwidth...looking for other sites. Ironically even in this, as with DRM, they are their own worst enemies. Once I get bi-directional synchronous FTTH, I plan to pay for Hulu Plus. But not before I get FTTH, as even with their Hulu's caching, which is fantastic, when my Cable Provider throttles me to under 30Kb/10Kb the content will not stream. Lets face it folks, that is not broadband.

Should a provider be able to call their service "Broadband" if they restrict the bandwidth to below the FCC definition of 768Kb? I think not. In fact I call it FRAUD and honestly believe RICO, Sherman Anti-Trust laws or some anti-fascist-monopoly laws should apply. The FCC definition for Broadband should be 100MB/100MB. The funny thing is, based on monitoring with my DD-WRT firewall/router, they could have kept me in the dark upstream bandwidth wise by allowing for around 400Kb upstream. Had the Cable Providers done that, most of my video content, if not all of it probably would have played fine and I would have been blissfully ignorant. But as with the DRM Media proponents they had to get GREEDY! Talk about ironically stupid.

Yea giving consumers what we want might have been a good idea, but its too late now, they blew it and blew it big time. Now out of frustration has been born a stubborn-ness that will prevent me from ever purchasing Cable TV...never again, no matter what. And if I have my way, none of my children, their friends and their children will ever purchase Cable TV either. Oh yea, I plan to tell way more than 12 - 25 people about this...count on it.

The only solution I see is to move to a place that offers bi-synchronous FTTH, meaning the same bandwidth upstream as downstream....note any service that restricts their bandwidth, FIOS cough cough ~ 50Gb/5Gb, is no better than the cable providers. Why not just make it 50Gb/50Gb and be done with it! Oh wait that would make sense!

With Synchronous FTTH there is literally no business reason for bandwidth restrictions or caps of any kind. Even 5Gb/5Gb blows away most other offerings and 10Gb/10Gb is better than FIOS. Many of the FTTH communities offer 50Gb/50Gb and 100Gb/100Gb at Cable Internet prices.

I should not HAVE TO download content to watch it first, but due to this throttling by 100% of cable providers, especially of my UPSTREAM BANDWIDTH it is required to watch content.

The one thing this upstream bandwidth throttling has done, is firm up my resolve NEVER to purchase cable TV EVER AGAIN! I would rather stop watching content completely. And as soon as I can move, I will move to a location that offers bi-synchronous Fiber-To-The-Home (Less than 30 location in the USA offer this as of October 6, 2011 [is.gd] ), Go Google's Go Big With a Gig initiative, that will add 4 more after Kansas City!)

And once I go FTTH, I will NEVER GO BACK, even if they later offer what they should have been offering in the year 2000! That horse has left the barn for good!

Re:Nice quote... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#37635458)

No Root ~ Not smart! (very few so called smart phones allow root access, therefore they are NOT smart!)

For what definition of 'smart' is root access to the device a requirement?

Coming fast to a cable Internet provider near you, are bandwidth caps. Back in 2006, they knew a typical household would need a minimum of 300 Gb of bandwidth per month...what was the first cap they considered, only 50 Gb. Duh moment. Now they are settling on 200 Gb or 250 Gb monthly caps. Insanity.

I dunno what country you're in but my cable cap is 1TB, and i never use anywhere close to that.

I should not HAVE TO download content to watch it first, but due to this throttling by 100% of cable providers in my gay-ass, backwards country, especially of my UPSTREAM BANDWIDTH it is required to watch content.

FTFY

They will be forced to make money in the theater (1)

trout007 (975317) | about 3 years ago | (#37634948)

If there was a real free market with no such thing as Intellectual Property than movie studios could make money in the theater. There they control the product and real copying is much more difficult.

Re:They will be forced to make money in the theate (1)

cboslin (1532787) | about 3 years ago | (#37635366)

If there was a real free market...

If Reaganomics has taught us anything, its that lower taxes do NOT create jobs and there is no such thing as a 'FREE' market! Something tells me you understand this. (Taxes use to be 90%, dropping to around 70% until the 1950s, between than and now they have dropped to less than 35% with wealthy (over $200K per year) able to pay 0% through their corporations....something a person can never do.) Where are the jobs?

Hey so called Faux News...that is what the 99% and wall street protesters are protesting...jobs! Get it right! Jobs and the lack there of, being fleeced while Corpers deleted jobs did not help either, of course you knew that. Notice how the protests are spreading to other communities outside of New York. No wonder Republican voting states want to move their primaries up to January 1st, they would vote now if it was legal. People know that Corpers have been paying 100% of conservatives, 40 - 60% of liberals to pass job killing legislation, bail out wall street, redistribute wealth to the banks and the uber wealthy 1% who pay 0% in taxes. This definitely cuts across all demographics as most of us regardless of what we call ourselves politically will never have a shot at joining that 1% and by now, even the densest and most dim-witted conservatives who have lost their homes to no fault of their own are waking up to reality that many of us already know.

Before you mod ers mod this down, think hard...can you honestly say that politics and legislation has not supported the Movie Industry, their lame DRM legislation and more? Follow the money... its not going into my pocket either.

...than movie studios could make money in the theater. There they control the product and real copying is much more difficult.

Sadly they have priced not only the tickets, but the popcorn, soda, candy, etc... beyond reason and have made trips to the theatre rare for many. And many of us went weekly and multiple times per week back in the day before ticket prices rose above $7. Now it costs that much for popcorn and soda...what a joke. A bag of popcorn, $1.29, lets me make 5 - 7 Tubs of popcorn and soda is between .77 - $1.00 on sale. I stop purchasing soda over $1.00...its not healthy for me to drink it anyway. So yea, those refreshment stand prices really make a difference.

I would love to see some of the statistics on movie attendance over time and see at what price point attendance really dropped off. But they will probably never release that. I bet the the theatres made more on their refreshment stands back in the day also

Adverts and lack of control (by the user) (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#37634984)

I hire/buy a DVD and place it in the disc drive, press play and try to go to the movie.

But no, some prick has decided that I WILL watch the advert for organisations that I have come to hate (movie companies, distribution companies, etc). Every time I see tht adverts I am reminded that they have an excessive level of control and I seek a means to take some control back myself. As I am forced to watch the adverts I think about the region codes on the DVD. And so the brand value of the advertisers goes even further down

I don't pirate to save money, I pirate so that I can choose what to watch. And I choose to watch the movie not that self serving adverts that make my blood boil.

Pirates do not sell me pirated movies; movie distributors sell me on pirated movies.

Re:Adverts and lack of control (by the user) (2, Insightful)

omglolbah (731566) | about 3 years ago | (#37635226)

Hear Hear!

I already paid for the movie, stop nagging about stealing a car...!

Re:Adverts and lack of control (by the user) (1)

mrbcs (737902) | about 3 years ago | (#37635450)

I actually paid $30 for WinXdvd Ripper Platinum so I don't have to see those damn ads anymore. (got the original one from http://www.giveawayoftheday.com/ [giveawayoftheday.com] )

It's the only one I've ever seen that really works. I use my quad core and can rip a movie in an hour.

Dvd goes on the shelf, mediacentre pc plays the file.

The movie industry is dumb. They have learned nothing. P.S. If I could go to a torrent site and have some machine at home build me a car... yer damn right I'd steal it in a heartbeat! Wait till 3d printers become affordable!

Dear MPAA, (2)

gman003 (1693318) | about 3 years ago | (#37635000)

Good luck with that.

Sincerely, the inevitable tide of change.

Re:Dear MPAA, (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#37635302)

You do realize that, the actions being pursued by the MAFIAA, constitute a "change" also, right?
Personally, I'm thinking America is being prepped for a much more managed way of life, something akin to how European countries have evolved.
For instance, let's say, after the Euro has been sufficiently undermined, China reverts back to communism and appropriates all that invest personal wealth. Obama turns around and say "OK, fuck you, we're not paying back our debt to you."

China has industrialized, and is now capable of cranking out a modern military defense.
The Euro has been removed from contention as the global medium of trade.
America has become a manged economy, with the government holding all the financial cards.

This, or something similar, looks like the "tide of change" sweeping in. More domestic control, which necessitates tighter control of the internet. Interesting times, no matter what...

There's a disconnect here somewhere... (1)

Raved Thrad (1864414) | about 3 years ago | (#37635012)

Innovate? Listen? Do either of those words go with the movie industry? As long as the movie industry and the Eff-You-A-A continue to think in terms of formulas, whether their "successful movie formula" or their "how to squeeze money from people without bothering with actual brain activity formula" they're going to continue to moulder away. When it comes to making a movie, how often is it other than some hackneyed (they'll insist it's "tried-and-true") plot that watches like it was put together by a committee? When it comes to figuring out what they're doing wrong, how often is it other than blaming something, usually piracy, _anything_ but their own lack of vision? Never happen. They're going to continue doing what they've always done and wonder why it's all going down the toilet.

Loss of control? Duh. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#37635020)

Why do you think Linux has a copyright? Why do you think it's licensed under the GPL, not the "Do whatever the FUCK you want" License?

Control is important sometimes.

Power not money (1)

electrosoccertux (874415) | about 3 years ago | (#37635044)

well duh, it never was about the MONEY; it was about the POWER that comes with having money. Shortly after the human has saturated its senses and desires with everything it laid its eyes on, one last cold thing remains that it can never get enough of: POWER.

This is news?

Chef Obama Cooks Solyndra Books Chicago Style (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#37635104)

From a USA posting the salient words ring true: lawmakers have also suggested that the Solyndra deal went through — despite administration [a few staffs who will be killed] concern about the company's long-term viability [gasp, hack ... hack ... donkey laugh] — because one of the solar firm's top investors was a foundation controlled by a major Obama fundraiser [Cha Ching!].

Now we have a link in the trail to the Obama Money [Monkey] Man.

Granted that most if not all of that $535 billion was quickly converted to ca$h and deposited in Nigerian Banks. Ergo, no extradition to US!

Obama does indeed follow his most cherished mentor, Al Caphone.

Will Obama die in Gitmo? ... of Siphilus? She has a mighty grasp on his manhood!

Just not "enough" or enoughs ... to make one Mr. Obama into a Mr. Jobs.

>>

So let me get this straight: (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#37635162)

A distribution monopoly cartel is worrying about there being a distribution monopoly??

So many memes that need image-macroing
- Do no liek competition!
- Iz in ur monopoly, stealin' ur industriez!
- Sup dawg, I herd U liek monopolies ... ...

idiot. (1)

chilvence (1210312) | about 3 years ago | (#37635232)

What a completely ignorant point of view... when you make something, you have absolute control over it until the moment that you show it to someone else. Then its pandoras box. The movie industry as it is shows a movie to a select small group first, eg a pre-screener, some of whom are probably there to nick it, then weeks later it goes to cinema, where its shown to dickheads who talk over it, some of whom probably have cameras and microphones and are there to nick it, then weeks later they finally offer it to the intended mainstream home viewer audience -- probably after it has been sneakily half-inched from the shiny master copy -- in a format which is incidentally quite patronising considering you have been a good boy and waited for it- it tells you in big scary red letters not to copy it, when in fact if you were going to do that, you would have done so several months ago at the pre-screening or the cinema or somewhere in the physical distribution chain, and in any case probably wouldnt be very much discouraged from doing so by a message from the future on a disc that you would never see anyway because you would have had the copied version...and in fact by paying for it in the first place, you have somewhat made it clear that you are not keenly intent on ripping it off...

*breathes in*

The point is, the industry is complaining that we wont buy on their terms, because they can't imagine a universe where a trade might in some way be flexible and open to reason. They should just take their head out of their arses and realise that no one is going to be encouraged to go to the cinema by being made to wait for the privelige of enjoying something in their own home. I wont go out, sit and watch a movie and eat shitty popcorn and listen to dickheads, when I have a nice chair and tv, I can cook well and pay attention to a story without feeling the need to shout over it. So when its finished, make the fucking movie website useful and offer a paid download link (without drm, because I won't be presumed to be a criminal when all I want to do is watch a movie) , at a price that actually reflects the savings of internet distribution, and I will buy it there. Last time I checked, there wasn't a monopoly on internet real estate.

Cue Trent Reznor (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#37635240)

head like a hole!
black as your soul!
I'd rather die
than give you control!

trademark slogan (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#37635282)

fuck the MPAA

all i can say to the movie industry is (1)

smash (1351) | about 3 years ago | (#37635438)

Suck shit. you missed the boat, mostly through your own greed. The opportunity has been there for the past decade or so for the movie industry to get on board with digital distribution and format shifting, but instead they persisted with hardware based copy-protection (blue-ray, dvd, etc) and attempting to get customers to pay for the same media multiple times on multiple different formats. They make out that they're not charging you for physical media, its a license to the content, yet if you want it in a different format, you need to pay full price for new media. Its bullshit.

Apple has taken over music distribution because by and large, they offer what customers want. They don't want to have to carry around a valuable single physical copy of their content (or break the law by ripping/copying it). They don't want to have to buy an entire album for one song. They don't want to trek around town to different stores looking for the particular song/artist they are interested in.

Yes, the iTunes program sucks. But as a marketplace, its awesome. I can hear about some new show/song/etc on the weekend or at night, go home, and purchase it then and there - and be listening/watching it minutes later.

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