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Movie Downloads to Coincide with DVD release

Hemos posted about 8 years ago | from the starting-to-get-some-things dept.


gihan_ripper writes "The movie download firms Movielink and CinemaNow have made a deal with the big five studios to ensure that downloads will coincide with DVD releases at Blockbuster and WalMart. Unlike previous deals, these will be full purchase downloads, and not merely for a rental period. The move is aimed at stemming the rising tide of pirate downloads, and DRM will be in force to prevent copying the movies to DVD. The first batch of downloadable movies will include Brokeback Mountain, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, and King Kong."

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Brokeback (2, Funny)

celardore (844933) | about 8 years ago | (#15049216)

I guess the fact they're releasing 'Brokeback Mountain' as a download is a good thing, for all those too embarrased to see it at the cinema or go out and buy it.

Re:Brokeback (1)

orangebook (924303) | about 8 years ago | (#15049250)

Can't decide what's worse, the fact this happens in this country or the fact there's people who makes comments like yours.

Re:Brokeback (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15049290)

January called, it wants it's outraged Brokeback supporters back. It also wants to remind you that people have been yukkin it up over this movie since he passed, please report to the laugh factory, your giva-shitter needs to be turned way down.

Re:Brokeback (1)

heinousjay (683506) | about 8 years ago | (#15049608)

I know what's worse - that there are tolerance police who feel they must control people's opinions through any means necessary. It's really annoying when I'm not allowed to dislike something without being labeled a throwback.

Re:Brokeback (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15049280)

At least this story fits those two tags which seem to be applied to every slashdot story now.

Re:Brokeback (3, Insightful)

xtracto (837672) | about 8 years ago | (#15049283)

Why would somebody be embarrased to see a 2 hours Marlboro [rareads.com] commercial? well ok ok, only the first half of the movie was, but seriously I was just waiting to listen to the man saying "come to where the flavor is, come to the Marlboro Country" (or the equivalent in the USA ad)

Re:Brokeback (1)

chrismcdirty (677039) | about 8 years ago | (#15049312)

Cigarettes haven't been advertised on television in the USA (at least where I am) for quite a while. All we have is cigarette print ads.

Re:Brokeback (1)

xtracto (837672) | about 8 years ago | (#15049341)

Oh in that way sorry, I was just recalling that when I saw the movie, the first half reminded me of a Marlboro TV ad I saw sometime ago in Mexico, it had really similar photography as the movie (the cowboys and the sheep herd and all that) and at some time a man said: "come to where the flavor is", hehe, I was holding my breath to avoid laughing when at the movie theatre, personally I did not like the movie anyway.

Re:Brokeback (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15049402)

You know, anyone as afraid as you to be associated with anything gay is a lover of teh cock in denial.

Brokeback + King Kong = DRM (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15049616)

Appropriate choices for the first release (Brokeback Mountain & King Kong), since I'm sure the user experience will resemble being "brokebacked" by a 400 pound gorilla.

Eh? (2, Funny)

voice_of_all_reason (926702) | about 8 years ago | (#15049221)

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix

Amazing! Not only can they transfer movies automagically over copper wires directly into my home, but the cables apparently create an inverse tachyon beam that brings movies in from the future!

Re:Eh? (3, Funny)

necro81 (917438) | about 8 years ago | (#15049371)

There's some joke reference to Spaceballs [imdb.com] to be made here. How can there be a video of Spaceballs - we're still in the middle of making it? Alas, my brain isn't working fast enough this morning.

Re:Eh? (1)

grasshoppa (657393) | about 8 years ago | (#15049615)


Actually, I think that was more a reference to the last episode of Star Trek, TNG. When Que starts flipping Picard between the three different time periods, and he..uh..

Sorry, yeah, I'm a geek. Sorry.

It's the Steve Jobs effect. (2, Funny)

neoshroom (324937) | about 8 years ago | (#15049231)

Fearful of the same digital piracy that humbled the music industry, two online vendors are poised to start offering recently released flicks via the Web. It's the Steve Jobs effect.

I thought the Steve Jobs effect was to make you believe that G5 smokes Intel processors only to a year or two later make you believe the opposite with equal fervor.

Elephant Essays [elephantessays.com] - Custom-created essays and research papers.

Re:It's the Steve Jobs effect. (1)

kannibal_klown (531544) | about 8 years ago | (#15049276)

In his defense, the G5 was heller-nice when it came out.

Unfortunately, from what I've heard it was power hungry and wasn't being advanced (ie, sped up) as quickly as they'd like. But the power thing was quite a factor, as Apple is really into laptops and they were stuc kon old G4's for a wihle now.

Obligatory 1984 comment (3, Funny)

MonoSynth (323007) | about 8 years ago | (#15049431)

'When I was arrested, Apple said that PPC processors were evil.'

'PPC processors are evil. Good. And Apple always said that PPC processors are evil, has it not?'
Winston drew in his breath. He opened his mouth to speak and then did not speak. He could not take his eyes away from the dial.

'The truth, please, Winston. Your truth. Tell me what you think you remember.'
'I remember that until only a week before I was arrested, Apple used PPC processors. They even proved that they were the better ones. Intel's processors were the evil ones. That had lasted for nine years. Before that '

Jobs stopped him with a movement of the hand.


'Do you remember,' he went on, ' writing in your diary, "Freedom is the freedom to say that two plus two
make four"?'
'Yes,' said Winston.
Jobs held up his left hand, its back towards Winston, with the thumb hidden and the four fingers extended.
'How many fingers am I holding up, Winston?
'And if the party says that it is not four but 4.0000000097768 then how many?'

Flamebait? (1)

nofsinga (921820) | about 8 years ago | (#15049511)

If this joke had been about Micro$oft or Dell or the like, It would probably be a (5:funny) right now.
It IS a good joke. Don't take offense so easily my Apple loving friends.

Re:It's the Steve Jobs effect. (1)

Yahweh Doesn't Exist (906833) | about 8 years ago | (#15049526)

nothing ever changes does it? certainly not when it comes to something as stagnant as the tech industry, and certainly not over a period of time so inconceivably small as a couple of years.

I for one am still satisfied by my 640kb.

Re:It's the Steve Jobs effect. (1)

wvitXpert (769356) | about 8 years ago | (#15049536)

Steve Jobs never said that Intel processors were always better than G5s, just that they are now. And even more to the point, this is just after Intel released a whole new chip design that is even tempting AMD users over to the darkside. While your comment might seem to make sense on the surface, any amount of thought at all would show it to be unintelligent.

Can't Burn? (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15049233)

If you can't burn a copy to play on your DVD player, then forget about it... Unless it's cheaper than buying the DVD (by at LEAST $10)... I'm fine with them putting the CSS encryption on my burnt DVD, but they have to let me burn it for me to even consider it...

*Note* I only dl movies if I want to watch it first before buying, but I normally do actually buy the DVD (if the movie doesn't suck).

So you're saying (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15049394)

*Note* I only dl movies if I want to watch it first before buying, but I normally do actually buy the DVD (if the movie doesn't suck).

You're one of those who think 99% of all movies suck, right?
I failed to find a proper analogy so this is the best I could come up with; you don't rape a whore to see wherever it's a good fuck or not and decide on future sessions.

Re:Can't Burn? (2, Funny)

should_be_linear (779431) | about 8 years ago | (#15049508)

Yes but this subscription will include 4 office chairs so that all family can sit in front of Windows computer and enjoy DRM'd movie together.

Re:Can't Burn? (3, Insightful)

neersign (956437) | about 8 years ago | (#15049594)

I think cost is what drives piracy, and I think it's time the movie industry and recording industry realized this. Instead of spending more money on DRM that will be cracked anyway, they should just give in and realize that no one wants to pay $20-30 for one DVD. The people I know who purchase DVD's on a regular basis only buy them when they are on sale for $10 or below.

and, as you were hinting, people who pay for and download a movie should be entitled to burn it to dvd if they choose. I don't see how this new DRM is going to stop a person who pirates movies now. The DRM is only going to piss off legitimate purchasers whose only means of watching a DVD on their tv is thru a DVD. And you may say, "well then they need to buy a DVD and not download it." But how many people do you think are going to pay to download the movie and then realize they can't burn it? I think that number is going to be huge at first, then enough people will get sick of dealing with whatever tech support they try to call to fix the problem, then they are going to tell all of their friends, who tell all of their friends, which in turn decreases the number of people who download any movie legitimately, which makes it not even worth the effort to begin with. And in the end, the DRM might have effectively stopped 2 people from pirating the movie.

DRM? (2, Interesting)

orzetto (545509) | about 8 years ago | (#15049235)

both sites for now are only allowing the movies people buy through downloads to be stored on PCs or on devices like the game player Xbox outfitted with certain Microsoft software

Cue to DVD-Jon crack in 3.. 2.. 1..

Seriously, does anyone know how much effort it would take to crack these DRM'd formats and export to AVI? What sort of security is in place? And wouldn't anyone be able to make a "bootleg" analog copy anyway?

Re:DRM? (5, Insightful)

DannyO152 (544940) | about 8 years ago | (#15049329)

Why do their work for them? I say, if they don't want to release in a format I can use, then they proceed without my dollars and with my negative word-of-mouth.

Re:DRM? (1)

firl (907479) | about 8 years ago | (#15049500)

They currently allow RealPlayer, and windows media DRM. It is quite nice actually, I do not remember if the Downloaded movies (that you buy) have the same DRM. They currently have d/l speeds at 1.7megs a second on my cable connection. I can think of various ways of "riping" but even if it does get cracked soon, I can microsoft and real updating the drm quite quickly.

Re:DRM? (1)

trandles (135223) | about 8 years ago | (#15049519)

I can't see these download services surviving for long unless the movie studios subsidize their existence. For one thing they only support windoze. Secondly, why would anyone pay to download movies that can be had for free (albeit illegally) elsewhere and on multiple platforms. This is yet another example of business not understanding their audience. If I'm going to spend money on a movie I want to be able to watch it how I want, where I want, not just on a windoze computer.

Re:DRM? (2, Interesting)

stunt_penguin (906223) | about 8 years ago | (#15049590)

OK we can't really rely on DVD-Jon (since he's gone over to The Dark Side) but hopefully there's a DRM-Kristian or DRM-Sven out there to crack the encryption.

Having said that, the encryption can probably be updated each time a movie is released (to play this movie, click [here] to install latest player update"), making things much harder to crack. That said, there is no such thing as an unbreakable DRM system and i'm sure someone'll do it.

There's no way of making an optical (and therefore relatively permanent copy of these movies, therefore anyone who buys one online but whose HD Crashes/Mobo fries/computer is destroyed will have lost all the movies they bought more surely than if they'd been burgled and their DVD collection stolen.

Thanks... (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15049236)

...but I think I've already dowloaded most of those.

BOO! (1)

Machina Fortuno (963320) | about 8 years ago | (#15049245)

I can now get that copy of Brokeback Mountain on my computer, cause really... who NEEDS a hard copy anyways?

I guess I have to recognize their effort at trying to get, yet again... another piece of the market. I think we might see this service being more popular further down he road... right now though, I would rather just go to Wal-mart and buy it. That takes like 5 minutes - the average movie-goer doesn' have lightning speed internet anyways, right?

I think it should be interesting to see the developments with the DRM on these monsters... just to see what they come up with. (the 6th computer that it is tranfered to gets a blue screen of death everytime that Derek over at the Movielink office presses the big red button)

Re:BOO! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15049562)

Sounds like YOU need a "hard" copy of Brokeback...

Encrypted, cannot play on DVD players (2, Insightful)

digitaldc (879047) | about 8 years ago | (#15049246)

Who wants to download something you can't burn and then watch on your home theater?

I will just buy the DVD thanks.

Re:Encrypted, cannot play on DVD players (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15049299)

"Who wants to download something you can't burn and then watch on your home theater?

I will just buy the DVD thanks."

and they are asking a price of DVD - Stealth $14.95 - the same price as it is at walmart

Re:Encrypted, cannot play on DVD players (5, Insightful)

mblase (200735) | about 8 years ago | (#15049310)

Who wants to download something you can't burn and then watch on your home theater?

I dunno, who wants to buy a movie you can't rip to your PC without violating the DMCA?

Oh, that's right, everybody.

Re:Encrypted, cannot play on DVD players (2, Informative)

digitaldc (879047) | about 8 years ago | (#15049395)

I dunno, who wants to buy a movie you can't rip to your PC without violating the DMCA?

Oh, that's right, everybody.

Everybody has given up ship, have gone underground, and are now setting sail from the Pirate Bay. [slashdot.org]

Re:Encrypted, cannot play on DVD players (1)

Yahweh Doesn't Exist (906833) | about 8 years ago | (#15049568)

>I dunno, who wants to buy a movie you can't rip to your PC without violating the DMCA?

people who live in countries where U.S. law doesn't apply?

Nice idea, but... (5, Insightful)

coffeechica (948145) | about 8 years ago | (#15049248)

Unlike their current services, in which online shoppers pay around $4 to rent new movies for up to a month, the films will be sold for prices "similar to home video," says Ramo.

Are they trying to deliberately kill the idea of movie downloads? Simultaneous release, same price... why should anyone wait for a few hours for a download when it's just as quick to get the actual DVD? And costs as much? The DVD can be passed on to others and there's no need to install special software on the PC to actually get it running.

Looks very much like an alibi action - "we tried to offer it, but nobody wanted it! So why should we bother?"

It's worse than that (5, Insightful)

tessaiga (697968) | about 8 years ago | (#15049346)

Unlike their current services, in which online shoppers pay around $4 to rent new movies for up to a month, the films will be sold for prices "similar to home video," says Ramo.
Ramo (Chief Executive of Movielink) is more explicit in a separate LA Times article [latimes.com] where he admits that Movielink will actually be selling the online downloads for about double the street price of the physical DVD. The article quotes movie studios as saying that they don't want to alienate their existing DVD sales channel operators, since DVDs currently account for 46% of studio sales -- about double the take from the box office.
Piracy fears also prevent online services from giving technological early adopters what they really want -- the ability to watch downloaded movies on their televisions. That's because the studios insist that downloadable movies include rigorous safeguards on copying. Users, for instance, can burn a DVD of a downloaded movie, but it will play only on a PC.


Ramo said download-to-own movies would sell for $20 to $30 -- up to double the $15 that discount retailers such as Wal-Mart Stores Inc. charge for DVDs, with downloads of classic titles for $10 to $17. He said the premium reflected the convenience of the service and the flexibility to transfer the digital download to two computers, as well as the ability to create a backup DVD that also would play on computers running Microsoft Corp.'s Windows operating system.

Reading quotes like this really make me wonder if some of these executives are living in a bizarro parallel reality, or if they've just gotten accustomed to spewing this sort of doublespeak nonsense with a straight face. Supposedly consumers will be happy to pay double for the "flexibility" of being able to back up their new movie to computer and play them on their computers. Well, when I buy the physical DVD from the store, surprise surprise, I can play my DVD on my computer OR the TV -- and guess which display I'm going to be watching most of my shows on, my 20" monitor screen or the 35" TV downstairs? Backing up the DVD is a snap too, and I don't have to deal with the annoying hassle of Movielink/CinemaNow's homebrew DRM.

Last I checked, paying more for something that I can do strictly less with wasn't the dictionary definition of "flexibility", but hey, I'm not a high-paid exec, what do I know.

Re:It's worse than that (1)

novus ordo (843883) | about 8 years ago | (#15049502)

It's just a new way to rip people off. Companies reduce costs by moving to places where the labor is dime a dozen and then pocket the money instead of passing the savings on to the customer. That's why they earn the big bucks.

Re:Nice idea, but... (2, Insightful)

voice_of_all_reason (926702) | about 8 years ago | (#15049400)

.why should anyone wait for a few hours for a download when it's just as quick to get the actual DVD?

Exactly. Even with cable internet on a popular torrent, you're still looking to at least an hour for a 1.4GB compressed copy, even longer if this service uses full 4.6GB uncompressed. I can go outside, wait for and take the bus, buy a hard copy, and get home all before this is done. Or just pick it up on the way home from work.

Re:Nice idea, but... (1)

sanoja (965700) | about 8 years ago | (#15049522)

Not only that, but their claim that you get to keep the movie "up to a month" is not totally true...

Sure, you can store the movie on your PC up to a month, but the moment you start watching it, you have 24 hours to view it or it goes bye bye.

Re:Nice idea, but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15049614)

Are they trying to deliberately kill the idea of movie downloads? Simultaneous release, same price... why should anyone wait for a few hours for a download when it's just as quick to get the actual DVD?

It's all about convenience [hoga.lu] , dude!

Full purchase? (1)

snullbug (156937) | about 8 years ago | (#15049251)

What kind of newspeak is that? Full purchase at Wal-Mart - I get a DVD. Full purchase this way I get to store one copy on a HD? Bogus.

DRM galore (3, Interesting)

giorgiofr (887762) | about 8 years ago | (#15049253)

FTA: Movies can't be "burned" or copied onto disks that can be played on other devices, such DVD players. The movies, however, can be copied to play on as many as two other PCs

Of course, it would be too easy if they were let out of the DRM jail...

Customers can hook up their computers to their TV sets using specially equipped video cables

Uh? Specially equipped cables? WTF are they talking about? Something that's got to do with HD and/or closing the analog hole?

Re:DRM galore (1)

voice_of_all_reason (926702) | about 8 years ago | (#15049421)

if they were let out of the DRM jail...

That'd be awesome. If it was like manhunt and you could just run into Wal-Mart and tag all the DVDs to set them free...

haven't RTFA but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15049579)

I'm going to go out on a limb and bet you they mean an HDCP compliant HDMI (re: DRM'd DVI over a $40 giant USB cable).

I haven't seen an HD-DVD or blueray unit on an HD set but I do have HD HBO and Starz as well an an upconverting DVD player (Panasonic S97) w/HDMI and there ain't much difference.

Let me guess (2, Insightful)

Adult film producer (866485) | about 8 years ago | (#15049254)

320x240 video, 96kbps mp3 audio + some drm monkey dung.

Or I could run over to a torrent site and get BareBack Mountain,

RiPPER......: Replica GENRE......: Drama/Romance
ViDEO TYPE..: NTSC RUNTiME....: 134 min
AUDiO TYPE..: DD5.1 STORE DATE.: 04/04/06
iMDB RATiNG.: 8.0 RLS DATE...: 03/17/06

I wouldn't mind paying for it but make it worth my while.

Re:Let me guess (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15049370)

The only thing that we learned from Brokeback Mountain losing the Oscar was that it's ok to come in number two.

The rest of this crap (96kbps MP3 audio and 320x240 resolution) is meaningless!

Hollywood still doesn't get it (3, Insightful)

Professor_UNIX (867045) | about 8 years ago | (#15049259)

Offering movies and then restricting them to a PC, most likely some form of Windows Media DRM crap, for the same price as you could buy the unencumbered DVD in the store is not a way to market a new service! This is even worse than iTunes Music Store and their lossily encoded AAC DRM-restricted music files. At least with that you can burn a sub-CD quality version to a CD and rerip it to MP3 format to archive it.

I'm confused (3, Insightful)

bigmouth_strikes (224629) | about 8 years ago | (#15049318)

Exactly... If the download is at the same price as a DVD, all I get is a ripped DVD but without the backup. Where's the value in that ?

The download should either be

* Full retail DVD price, allowing backups, format shifting etc. Collection format.
* Rental DVD price, with DRM restrictions. Throwaway format.

Re:Hollywood still doesn't get it (1)

Scrameustache (459504) | about 8 years ago | (#15049347)

most likely some form of Windows Media DRM crap, for the same price as you could buy the unencumbered DVD in the store

They have unencumbered DVDs now? When did Macrovision go out of business?

Re:Hollywood still doesn't get it (1)

andrew_j_w (630799) | about 8 years ago | (#15049387)

you could buy the unencumbered DVD

Less encumbered probably. Unencumbered definitely not.

Re:Hollywood still doesn't get it (1)

DRM_is_Stupid (954094) | about 8 years ago | (#15049611)

iTunes Music Store already has video downloads, and they don't permit burning video to a format playable on generic DVD players. So, iTMS is not better but the same.

WIndows only? (3, Insightful)

Selivanow (82869) | about 8 years ago | (#15049264)

Both companies seem to only support Windows and IE. What about the other half of the planet. Opensource aside, there is still a pretty big Mac base out there. It makes great market sense to alienate a group of users like that.

Re:WIndows only? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15049335)

What about the other half of the planet

I think you meant to say, "what about the other 8% of the planet?". And guess what, you've answered your own question!

Re:WIndows only? (2, Informative)

way2trivial (601132) | about 8 years ago | (#15049368)

a big mac base?
http://news.com.com/Apple+to+ditch+IBM,+switch+to+ Intel+chips/2100-1006_3-5731398.html [com.com]

1.8 percent of the market..

realistically, 1.8% is a fine percentage of folks to skip, when development and support would cost just as much as for the 98%

kinda like movies that no longer get released in vhs...

Re:WIndows only? (1)

hrbrmstr (324215) | about 8 years ago | (#15049543)

Such strange logic, given that this is a group of people who are willing and very able to use digital media on computers (as opposed to the average PC user who can't even manage to keep malware off their systems) *and* have demonstrated over and over again how very willing they are to actually *pay* for stuff they use.

Couple that with a cheap system that can eaily be hooked up to a TV and *comes with a remote* and it would seem that the studios are overlooking a serious bit of cash flow.

And your argument about cross-platform development and support is dubious at best. Since we're just talking about displaying movies, Java could easily be employed as well as most of the cross-platform toolkits with hooks into Quicktime.

Re:WIndows only? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15049440)

That nice lady on the front of http://www.cinemanow.com/ [cinemanow.com] must have a MacBook Pro with the latest XP-Hack installed!

No burning to DVD? (1)

acidblood (247709) | about 8 years ago | (#15049266)

From the article:
To keep from competing directly with large retailers like Wal-Mart, both sites for now are only allowing the movies people buy through downloads to be stored on PCs or on devices like the game player Xbox outfitted with certain Microsoft (MSFT) software. Movies can't be "burned" or copied onto disks that can be played on other devices, such DVD players. The movies, however, can be copied to play on as many as two other PCs, says Ramo.

So they mean unless I have an Xbox, I'll have to watch it in the tiny 19" monitor in my bedroom instead of the 42" plasma TV and the badass sound system in my living room? Yeah, I predict they'll succeed big time.</sarcasm>

Re:No burning to DVD? (1)

elrous0 (869638) | about 8 years ago | (#15049463)

Actually it could work if you had an Xbox 360. The problem is that, thanks to poor design on MS's part, you also need a media center PC to watch video on an Xbox. Hopefully, they'll fix that with Windows Vista, but it was a pretty dumb move.

As it stands, who in their right minds is going to pay $20-$30 for a movie that they could buy cheaper and at higher quality on a DVD, with the inconvenience of it being DRMed to the PC to boot?

If they really want to suceed, they need to cut the price to half that of the full-featured DVD and allow users to make one DVD copy. Ot better yet, offer a DVD/Download package where you can get the DVD *and* the download for a little more than the price of the DVD.


So basically... (5, Insightful)

Bogtha (906264) | about 8 years ago | (#15049268)

The move is aimed at stemming the rising tide of pirate downloads, and DRM will be in force to prevent copying the movies to DVD.

So basically, they aim to compete with piracy by selling me something less convenient at a higher price? Genius!

Seriously, when are they going to get it that the only thing they have going for them is convenience? The black market of free downloads is always going to be cheaper. The only way you can fight it is to offer a better, more convenient product. And tying it up with DRM that prevents what is probably the second most desired feature after watching it is only going to screw that up.

Why would I buy from them when I can get a copy that I can burn to DVD at a cheaper price? It's sad when anonymous pirates can provide better customer service than multinational corporations that created the damn thing in the first place.

Re:So basically... (1)

ce (98666) | about 8 years ago | (#15049364)

agree. It's like allofmp3 offereing far superior music download service than any other site I've seen

Re:So basically... (1)

elrous0 (869638) | about 8 years ago | (#15049382)

something less convenient at a higher price? Genius!

It's so crazy it just might work!

Oh no, wait, that line only works if you're MacGyver or the A-Team.


Re:So basically... (1)

pitc (557530) | about 8 years ago | (#15049443)

Another thing they've got going for them... It's not illegal.

I've long since stopped downloading that which I do not own legally, and suggest you stop trying to justify your crime and do the same.

DRMWhy? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15049272)

I've never quite understand these people. It really does seem like they just tout DRM for show. Everyone knows that the DRM will be cracked and/or circumvented within a month, maybe two. Sometimes, it doesn't even take that long. And it's not always because I want to give my movie to a friend. But, if I *buy* a movie, and own it, I will find a way to put it on a disk, so I can carry it to a friends place and watch it if I want. It seems like wasting time on things like that will stifle the kind of innovation that will actually open the online market for these big companies to make money.

One day a studio will break from tradition and embrace the net fully and reap the rewards. I'm still waiting....

No DVD burning (1)

pjrc (134994) | about 8 years ago | (#15049277)

Great, you let people download the movie, but then they can't burn it to a DVD?

Even with downloaded music, you just gotta allow burning it to a CD so it can be enjoyed on all devices. Hard to imagine how movie downloads are going to sell if they can't be burned onto a DVD.

Not to mention their limited plans for the future (1)

Se7enLC (714730) | about 8 years ago | (#15049484)

With no way for the customer to burn the movies to disc, how is that a permanent ownership? I imagine they are expecting people to start using this as the way to buy movies, but what happens when somebody buys 10 movies? 20? 50? Are they supposed to just keep buying more HD space to store them indefinitely?

Plenty of people have already mentioned the "but I can't watch it on my TV, what's the point?" reasoning.

I think an ideal system would be a service where you can download a reduced-quality version (like iTunes) a few days before the DVD release for a higher price. Included in that cost, however, is a copy of the DVD that they will mail you once it releases. If I get a physical copy of the dvd, I don't care what DRM is on the digital file copy, since I'll just delete it once the DVD arrives.

I hates me the DRM, but this could be good (3, Interesting)

LandruBek (792512) | about 8 years ago | (#15049281)

Although I don't like DRM I think this is something of a hopeful sign -- to see more legal movie distribution via download. If it gets to be common knowledge that download != illegal (much less "piracy" or "theft"), then the MPAA and RIAA won't (I predict) be able to pass a lot of goofy, anti-P2P legislation.

The stifling effect of widespread DRM is another serious problem, but I would rather for the moment rather see legitimate, mass-consumption downloads, and then we'll see less "troll" legislation.

Forget the downloads... (1)

creimer (824291) | about 8 years ago | (#15049292)

Hollywood should reduce the prices on new DVDs. Seems like too many new DVDs are coming out at $30 USD or higher. This means I'm picking up the DVDs when Amazon or Borders are offering them at 30% off or waiting a while for the prices drop down to $20 USD range. Granted, I'm a cheap bastard. But I had to wait two years to pick up The Lord of The Rigns trilogy extended collection for $60 USD!

Prevent copying it to DVD? (5, Insightful)

GauteL (29207) | about 8 years ago | (#15049297)

So basically they expect people to watch the films exclusively on their PC, rather than their living room TV. You end up with a product much worse than a DVD for a strikingly similar price. To make it even worse, you have to spend hours of your own broadband bandwidth to download it.

Not only that, DVDs can regularly be had for reduced prices at high street DVD stores, I'm willing to bet these downloads will not have equally aggressively prices sales periods.

This just lends credibility to people saying they are basically just setting legal downloads up to fail, so they can push for harder legal restrictions afterwards.

A download is a lower quality product than a hard copy DVD, as you don't get the physical copy and packacking. Since there is no physical reproduction, no physical transport and no extra goodies, people have certain expectations to price. Since you don't get physical media, your investment is a lot less secure.

Any download replacement should be:
a) much cheaper
b) convenient
c) easy to backup

This product fails on all of these points.

trying to fail? (1)

Penguinoflight (517245) | about 8 years ago | (#15049456)

The question here is what disadvantages would the MPAA have in intentionally failing a DRM download distribution scheme. I think the most obvious one is that they would prove people dont want to download movies, and that the problem truely lies with traditional distribution methods being troublesome. If you can get a dvd screener and watch it with 4 or 5 of your friends, it's certainly a better option than spending a combined $50 at the theater when the movie comes out. By making the download release concurrent with dvd release, this group is doing nothing to combat that problem.

Re:Prevent copying it to DVD? (2, Insightful)

Tim C (15259) | about 8 years ago | (#15049470)

So basically they expect people to watch the films exclusively on their PC, rather than their living room TV.

Not that I'm defending the idea (I think it's a step in the right direction, but that it doesn't go far enough), but as media PCs become more and more common, more people watching the films "exclusively on their PC" will be watching it on "their living room TV".

Perhaps this sort of thing will be a more attractive proposition as media centre-style PCs become more common, but it's a bit of a chicken and egg situation - without a compelling reason to buy one, few people will...

No Linux support. (-1, Offtopic)

dhasenan (758719) | about 8 years ago | (#15049301)

I understand a desire for a reasonable level of DRM, even if I don't like it; but neither of these services support any OS except Windows 2000/XP, or any player except WMP10.

Does anyone know of a good, legal site for downloading movies in a universal format?

Not relevant for me (3, Interesting)

Ilgaz (86384) | about 8 years ago | (#15049307)

Unless these morons (both MPAA and the legal DL sites) figure there is a LEGIT, ORIGINAL buying community got sick of waiting for DVD "plastic" to watch them on their computer OUTSIDE of "America", I wouldn't care less.

Also as WMV and RealVideo, Quicktime supports 5.1 sound for ages, if you pay the same money as Dolby Digital or DTS DVD to a stereo download, you have been err.. what was the term? :)

If it is kind of hard to understand why a random guy on Slashdot got real mad about the situation

1) Consider you want to watch a Region 2 DVD , you don't care about the region fight.
2) Go to Amazon.co.uk, turn OFF "one click" feature and..
3) Put couple of DVDs in your shopping list
4) Fill in the delivery form as you live in Istanbul,Turkey or some other European country outside UK
5) Look to "shipping and handling" cost and be amazed. If you have only 1 DVD on that list, it will be generally HIGHER than the Movies original cost.

Step 6 is generally launching a pirate client and download the freaking movie. As a guy in industry, I don't. Can't blame others if they would in current amazingly stupid scheme of things.

Good news, everyone! (5, Insightful)

Dachannien (617929) | about 8 years ago | (#15049309)

Now that you can download movies anywhere in the world as soon as the DVD is released, there's no reason for discs to have region codes anymore.

And yet again the paying customer gets shafted. (2, Insightful)

Ilex (261136) | about 8 years ago | (#15049338)

DRM will be in force to prevent copying the movies to DVD.

Joe six pack will soon discover the evils of DRM when they can't burn the film they legally paid for onto DVD to watch on their new HD TV or their HDD / Computer fails and they have to buy all their movies again. Unlike the pirates who can happily burn / backup their W4r3z.

A lot of people, especially the tech savvy ones will still choose to get the pirate downloads. Remove the DRM and let people burn their own DVD's.

Let me spell it out for the MPAA! Will you pay for a product which is inferior to one you can get for free?

insanity (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15049345)

okay. just for the record, because of IP rights, they use DRM in their releases.. (to keep their property safe) and to facilitate this they require their customers use WINDOWS. making their customers use an inferior product that has plenty of issues reguarding saftey.... plus the entire issue of not being able to use my 48" hi-def tv because i can't get the damn thing off my pc without jumping through drm-stripping hoops. oh yeah, and i'm paying 4/5ths of what i would if i just bought the DVD..... uh... come again?

Downloading (3, Insightful)

Secret Agent X23 (760764) | about 8 years ago | (#15049377)

Seems to me the industry wants to offer downloads just because they've heard people like to download movies, as if they (the movie execs) think the act of downloading were, in itself, the objective. And if it flops because people don't like the prices and/or the restrictions, the executives won't understand -- because, after all, they were letting us "download."

Well, I dunno. That's the way it sounds to me.

Theatrical release (2, Interesting)

Loconut1389 (455297) | about 8 years ago | (#15049410)

Now if the download coincided with the theatrical release and they mailed you a real dvd when it came out, I'd be sold- DRM or no.

Fogetaboutit (1)

HangingChad (677530) | about 8 years ago | (#15049435)

And just what is my incentive to download a movie I can't burn to DVD and play on my home theater system? It costs them next to zero to distribute movies this way and the consumers nothing in return.

Just why do they think this is going to work? Only in Korporate Amerika do people imagine that you can get something for nothing.

Sell individual scenes (2)

dpbsmith (263124) | about 8 years ago | (#15049450)

One of the reasons why iTunes Music Store works is that although music is priced at about the same price per minute as the same content on CD, you have the option of buying individual songs. And in fact this works very well for me. I have probably purchased between fifty and a hundred individual songs where I want the individual songs but do not like the artists well enough to want eleven more.

So... maybe they should try offering individual scenes from movies.

This wouldn't work for every movie, but "Basic Instinct" would probably lend well itself to this treatment.

Re:Sell individual scenes (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15049546)

Basic Instinct2 is being released in HD so you can see the cobwebs and hear the creaking in 5.1 surround.

DRM will be in force to prevent copying the movies (1)

sacherjj (7595) | about 8 years ago | (#15049452)

That works GREEEAAAT. [rolls eyes] I got the free trial to Movielink. Downloaded a movie. Used FRAPS to record it off the Windows Media Player video overlay, to see if it would work. Recompressed the uncompressed recorded video. Then uninstalled their crappy hardware and deleted the videos.

It's a convenience to you... (2, Insightful)

novus ordo (843883) | about 8 years ago | (#15049465)

That's around $20 to $30 for newer films, and $10 to $20 for older flicks. CinemaNow intends to be more aggressive, offering some of its new flicks for under $20 and to build traffic, it will offer a two-for-one sale at the outset.

Movies can't be "burned" or copied onto disks that can be played on other devices, such DVD players. The movies, however, can be copied to play on as many as two other PCs, says Ramo.

Why the hell would anyone want to pay that kind of money for crippleware? These guys just don't get it. Internet distribution should be a godsend because it costs them close to nothing to distribute. They think it's some special service that is oh so convenient. It's like the house I was looking at the other day, there's a train station 30ft away and they actually charge $10k more because "it's a convenience." Yeah I want my house to shake every 20min and wake me with the horn, how convenient.

Re:It's a convenience to you... (1)

fury88 (905473) | about 8 years ago | (#15049563)

Why the hell would anyone want to pay that kind of money for crippleware?

You forget about the teens who spend mommy's and daddy's money and don't give a flying rats ass. I am sure that's what they are banking on.

There is an upside (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15049468)

Piracy is very big on college campuses because what does almost every college kid have: lots of bandwidth and a laptop. Very few college kids have money and even fewer have a car. I've seen people search for cans and bottles on campus just to buy a six pack. These sites do do rentals for 2.99 to 3.99. Thats not a bad deal where you don't have to take gambles on the quality of the rip and getting sued. still expensive for a poor student but considering at least at my school, most kids don't have a tv anyways, the rentals aren't as bad a deal.

everything electronic (1)

fusto99 (939313) | about 8 years ago | (#15049498)

I'll guess that in a couple years or so, everything will be digital like this. It has pretty much already happened with music. Just about everybody I know use MP3s over CDs now. When is the last time you saw someone running around with a portable CD player? They all instead have some sort of MP3 player instead. If the go out and purchase a CD, the first thing they do is convert it to MP3 and transfer it to their MP3 player. The only time someone might still use a CD is if they are playing it in their car but even that is changing. Most car stereos have some sort of MP3 playback. Even for my car, I have a Omnifi MP3 player with a 30GB hard drive. I don't even bother with CDs in the car when I can load them directly into the MP3 player. Now the video industry is going to this now. Especially with the media center PCs being so popular now, I'm sure everyone is going to be moving to have everything electronic. Just put a 200GB hard drive in the computer and you can have almost 300 movies on there if you compress them down to 700MB with DIVX or something comparable.

Did Sony come up with this idea? (2, Interesting)

techstar25 (556988) | about 8 years ago | (#15049534)

From the article
Movies would cost $20-$30.
They would be resticted to specific hardware (your Windows equipped computer).
You can't watch them on your HD home theatre system.
Sounds like the PSP UMD format.

Why can't we just buy the DVD from Wal-Mart for $15, and then walk to our PC and put it in, and then watch it? Then when we're done, we take the DVD, walk to the home theatre DVD player and drop it in and watch it again. Boy, all that walking has got me tired.

Writable to DVD (1)

syntap (242090) | about 8 years ago | (#15049538)

About ten minutes after these are released, the DVD Jon's of the world will have these up on all the P2P networks.

Filenames to look for:

Broken/Cracked Mountain
Harry Potter and the Pwners of the Phoenix
King Kpng

Special System? (1, Informative)

AnyThingButWindows (939158) | about 8 years ago | (#15049542)

It seems that movielink requires you have a special system just to get to their site. They have been added to my broken website list. You need a machine running a specific OS, a specific browser, and specific media player, nor can it be burned to DVD. Now explain to me again Hollywood why I would buy something that doesn't work, and is crippled?

I think that ill just go to the Piratebay, and grab my copy of Kong. If Hollywood wants to pick and choose their customers, then I will pick and choose what, how, and where I get my movies.

The more you tighten your grip vadar, the more star systems will slip through your fingers.

Do I have to ask where I sit as well? (1)

Ghost-in-the-shell (103736) | about 8 years ago | (#15049612)

Sure why don't they come in to my home and dictate to me which popcorn to eat, how much, where I sit and oh of course who can watch it with me in my own home.

If I can't burn the movie to a DVD how am I suppose to get it to living room tv from my computer? The average person does NOT know how to do this besides burning a DVD and using a standard DVD player..... BTW people reading this are not average users.

DRM does not work!

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