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What if I like late-fees!!??!


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  • What if I like late-fees!!??!

    LOS ANGELES, California (Reuters) -- This disc will self-destruct in 48 hours.

    That is the warning The Walt Disney Co. will issue this August when it begins to "rent" DVDs that after two days become unplayable and do not have to be returned.

    Disney home video unit Buena Vista Home Entertainment will launch a pilot movie "rental" program in August that uses the self-destruction technology, the company said on Friday.

    How it works
    The discs stop working after a change in color renders them unreadable. They start off red, but when they are taken out of the package, exposure to oxygen turns the coating black and makes it impenetrable by a DVD laser.

    Buena Vista hopes the technology will let it crack a wider rental market, since it can sell the DVDs in stores or almost anywhere without setting up a system to get the discs back.

    The discs work perfectly for the two-day viewing window, said Flexplay Technologies, Inc., the private company which developed the technology using material from General Electric Co.

    In talks with other companies
    Chief Executive Alan Blaustein said he was also in conversations with other companies to use the self-destructing discs.

    The technology cannot be hacked by programmers who would want to view the disc longer because the mechanism which closes the viewing window is chemical and has nothing to do with computer technology.

    However, the disc can be copied within 48 hours, since it works like any other DVD during that window.

    Buena Vista did not disclose pricing plans but said the discs, dubbed EZ-D, would be available in August in select markets with recent releases including "The Recruit," "The Hot Chick," and "Signs."


    Hmm...get busy over the weekend...boom, it's gone. Tough luck.

    Landfill space.

    All the idiots who return it because they didn't understand...

    The fact that a DVD player in a notrogen filled glass case will work perfectly... [Wink]

    Okay, except for that last one, there's too many negatives and not enough positives. Why would anyone want this???
    I haven't felt this good since we stole the 2000 elections!--Ned Flanders

  • #2
    I think I'll just stick with Netflix.
    "Americans don't want a mentally unstable president; he might start a war or something." - Bill Maher


    • #3
      I know that Blockbuster (I used to be their corporate house-elf) spends quite a bit of time and money tracking down unreturned videos and DVDs. There's a whole "system" -- I used to be a "Customer Relations Coordinator" (can you believe it? BBV has a RANKING system more involved than "clerk" and "manager" -- I got a red star, as opposed to the yellow star that CSRs got) which essentially meant that it was my "duty" to call customers who had tapes out for more than a week, and ask them to return them. Then I got to call those who had stuff out for over a month, and inform them that, per their customer application, we would be charging the purchase price of whatever new release VHS to their credit card. Keep in mind, that most VHS purchase cost (even today) is about $100 bucks. And this was in '97, before DVDs.

      Anyhoo, if these discs could be made cheaply enough, and shipped to rental stores cheaply enough, this could actually save places like BBV a nice chunk of labor cost. Of course, this assumes that they actually COULD be made cheaply enough. BBV makes a nice profit on buying a DVD for like, what, $5?, renting it ten or twenty times at $4 a pop (and then, LATE FEES!), and then SELLING it for about what it retails at Best Buy for when it first comes out. Scammers. So, yeah, I don't think this system would work out well.


      • #4
        They tried this already, and as I recall, DIVX was none to popular if it's lack of ubiquity is anything to go by...

        I second Aunty Sue, Netflix is the way to go, this thing is just a waste...
        Concerning the difference between man and the jackass: some observers hold that there isn't any. But this wrongs the jackass.
        -Mark Twain


        • #5
          Disney is always trying to stick it to the customers. A while back they tried to scramble their signal so that you couldn't tape the movies off the cable broadcast. Not sure whatever came of that.


          • #6
            HAHAHAHAHAHHA.. riiiiiight.. wonder how long before the tree huggers start getting on their *** because of the unbiodegradable chemistry and how much more landfill it will use up...
            Oh... Oh... I know you di-int!


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