The Tyranny of dvd Region Codes

DVD-Video bottom-side.jpgI’ve enjoyed many of David Attenborough’s documentaries on dvd. I have several on my shelves. Several, except for my favorite. I’ve combed Amazon for it, but BBC seems to prefer to limit availability to a fraction of the human life on planet Earth.

To a degree, I can appreciate corporations wanting to maximize profit and minimize piracy. I have no problem shelling out a few extra bucks above my cable tv expense to get a nice disk set instead of fast-forwarding through TBS commercials (as interesting as those bits of pop culture might be) from a 25-year-old video cassette.

Silly corporations. Twenty-five years after release and still holding out for … well … media pirates.

About catholicsensibility

Todd lives in Minnesota, serving a Catholic parish as a lay minister.
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2 Responses to The Tyranny of dvd Region Codes

  1. Liam says:

    My related complaint would be directed to the non-profit corporations that comprise PBS stations. And it’s about their programmers’ apparent horror about reprising old series that had great and enduring educational content. The sole exception to this was the re-airing in recent years of select episodes of The French Chef (notable of how much content was crammed into 30 minutes compared to all the ad, um sponsorship spots, and lifestyle marginalia in programming of the last generation).

    Things like:
    -the inimitable Thalassa Cruso’s horticultural series from the late 1960s to mid 1970s
    -the original Victory Garden series with Jim Crockett (and his successor, Bob Thomson). Sometimes, there are rights issues that would have to be negotiated, particularly if there was a bad parting (Bob Thomson comes to mind as an injured party in that regard, if memory serves). The Victory Garden was PBS’s longest-running adult educational series, and it was allowed to sputter into the dust.
    -The Story of English (brought to mind when I saw Robin McNeil, its host, eulogize the late Jim Lehrer)
    -divers fantastic episodes from the early seasons of American Experience (like the classic that ended its first season: “Sins of Our Mothers: The Story of Emmeline” [LINK TO BE PROVIDED IN PS TO THIS POST GIVEN LINK MODERATION]
    -Masterpiece Theatre series from the early 1970s.

    But it’s not like any of this content aged out of relevance!

    Instead, it’s very clear that development folks in PBS target well-heeled retired upper middle class folks with programming that resonates with their lifestyles past and present. Music of the 1950s and 1960s, and expensive home remodels. (Which is especially ironic when they are touted to be green in divers ways, because nothing says sustainability and simplicity like gutting something and replacing it almost entirely, right; folks, one of the greenest things one can do is purchase or rent old housing stock and not waste a lot of money doing too much to it but living with its not unreasonable built-in limitations….).

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