Suicidal DVDs? Forget It, Says Report
321 Studios has bad news for Walt Disney's Buena Vista Home Entertainment, which apparently believes the answer to DVD copying problems includes trying to get people to rent discs that commit suicide after 48 hours.
Almost 4,000 people were asked, "Would you consider renting a self-destructive DVD?", says a new 321 survey.
And 76% said, in effect, Forget It.
The survey was conducted in response to recent reports that Flexplay and The Walt Disney Co home video unit, Buena Vista Home Entertainment, will launch a DVD rental program this August that makes DVDs unreadable after 48 hours, says 321.
"This move to create self-destructing DVDs by Buena Vista Entertainment implies that consumers are dishonest in their use of technology, and consumers are not pleased with this implication. Customers should not be criminalized when they go to rent a movie," says Robert Moore, 321 president.
"In addition, consumers are displeased with the negative environmental impact of these products," he went on.
"The creation of these non-recyclable, one-use products will create unnecessary landfill waste or release harmful toxins into the air when trash is incinerated.
"Environmental experts agree that self-destructing DVDs are extremely harmful to the environment. Instead of producing a disc that would be used when rented by 50 to 100 persons, the resources and energy used to create that disc will be multiplied by 50 or 100 times. Consumers that rent DVDs - like the 5,051 respondents that participated in the survey - overwhelmingly prefer to either to purchase or rent traditional DVDs.
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Other survey results said:
15 percent (758 respondents) replied that they would rent a self-destructing DVD only if the price were low.
Nine percent (454 respondents) stated that they would consider renting a self-destructing DVD.
In the meanwhile, to, "thwart industry threats" to stop the sale of its DVD Copy Plus software and interactive tutorial for making personal backup copies of DVDs, 321 is currently suing nine major movie companies, including Disney, challenging the constitutionality of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) and citing its free speech rights under the First Amendment.
The others named in the suit are MGM Studios, Tristar Pictures, Columbia Pictures, Sony Pictures Entertainment, Time Warner Entertainment, Universal City Studios, The Saul Zaentz Company and Pixar Corporation.