There has been much discussion recently about the movie industry’s efforts to maintain its product release “windows,” so that theatrical performances precede pay-per-view, followed by DVD sales, pay TV (HBO, etc.) and finally advertiser-supported television. My view is that these folks are shooting themselves in the foot, because DVD sales actually declined in 2009 for the first time. The lesson is not that DVDs are being sold OR rented “too early,” rather that technological convergence is making more and more options available to consumers, so building a library of physical DVDs is relatively unimportant, and certainly no longer a priority.
But as usual — see their opposition to the VCR — Hollywood has this all backwards. Again.
In a ground-breaking deal for the online movie renting, Netflix and Warner Bros. Home Entertainment announced Wednesday that they have reached a deal that calls for Netflix to get access to more of the studio’s catalog content.In exchange, Netflix agreed to do something it has never done before. Netflix won’t offer new releases from the studio on DVD and Blu-ray for a period of 28 days after they go on sale.