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DVD security becoming an insult to the consumer


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#1 of 26 OFFLINE   Greg_M

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Posted August 29 2001 - 08:19 AM

The studios & retailers have a right to insure their product in protected from theft. But, have they gone overboard - to the point of insulting the consumer? I recently purchase a "Planet of the Apes" DVD - there were three security stickers holding the case shut. When DVD first appeared these stickers didn't exist. Naturally while removing the top sticker the top part of the label cover came off with it - this usually happens when the label is larger than the plastic cover - something the studios didn't consider when DVD first arrived since there were no security stickers. Anyway, I cursed, and then opened the case - and there is a security device glued inside - to protect the retailer. I watched the film. Of course I must sit through two minutes of copyright protection notices before I can finally select play. These notices will probably become more easily recited than the "Pledge of Alliance." Also remember DVD's can not be copied - unless you have the right equipment which the average consumer does not. The DVD is defective - it started skipping - I turned it over and there were scratches on the disc. I returned it to the retailer - in this case Best But. Best Buy replaced the DVD, but before they would let me leave the store they had to remove the plastic shrink wrap from the disc - just in case I wanted to return it again or to prove it wasn't stolen or something. Nothing like leaving a store with opened product. Years ago we didn't have so many protected devices on laserdiscs or VHS tapes - it is starting to wear thin. DVD's only cost a few dollars to press - Who out there is actually stealing these things? You would think they contained the Holy Grail. Anyone who is going to steal them will find a way. What's to come next the disintegrating DVD that can only be played ten times? Seems like the studios are saying "It was a pleasure to watch a Laserdisc or VHS tape but It is a privilege to watch a DVD. [Edited last by Greg_M on August 29, 2001 at 11:23 AM]

#2 of 26 OFFLINE   Eric Bass

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Posted August 29 2001 - 08:24 AM

Yeah when my Run Lola Run arrived from Amazon I opened it and the security tag had gotten loose inside and stuck itself to the disc. Fortunately the resulting glue residue was stuck to the P&S side, I didn't even bother returning it since that side is never gonna be used anyway Posted Image

#3 of 26 OFFLINE   Charles J P

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Posted August 29 2001 - 08:36 AM

[quote]

What's to come next the disintegrating DVD that can only be played ten times?

[quote]
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#4 of 26 OFFLINE   Mark Zimmer

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Posted August 29 2001 - 08:40 AM

Yeah, it's absurd in some cases....like the $9.95 MGM release of Count Yorga, Vampire. 3 plastic strips on the side, plus the electronic tag. Do people really try to steal DVDs that are this cheap? ------------------ "This movie has warped my fragile little mind."

#5 of 26 OFFLINE   Craig_T

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Posted August 29 2001 - 08:45 AM

What I hate is that those stupid security stickers cause the plastic on keepcases to wrinkle and they look like crap! And don't even get me started on those lamebrained must-sit-through FBI warnings. I don't give a rats ass if INTERPOL expressed concern at their 1977 convention about illegal copying every time I pop in a DVD! Could you imagine if there was a copy protection warning every time you put in an audio CD? Now I hear that they're adding a bunch of errors in audio CDs to stop internet pirates (har, har) and they won't even play in CD-ROM drives because of it. Argggh!! Like all copy protection schemes, this will do NOTHING to stop determined pirates and will just piss off honest consumers!

#6 of 26 OFFLINE   Jeff Wilson

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Posted August 29 2001 - 09:02 AM

As I mentioned in another recent thread, people steal DVDs like crazy. I worked as a lead clerk of a Borders music/video section, and I can tell you from firsthand experience we got ripped off countless times. I assume some people just want a collection for free, while others sell them on ebay or at used CD places for quick cash. Regardless, retailers are getting seriously hit by theft of DVDs. You figure at a possible $22-30 a disc, that mounts up in a hurry. We got taken for about 100 discs over one particular week, including 40 in one go. So while it's annoying, I can see the retailers point of view. It does piss me off to have the cover edge get stripped off by the top dogbone tag, though.
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#7 of 26 OFFLINE   Kyle McKnight

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Posted August 29 2001 - 09:14 AM

[quote]

Nothing like leaving a store with opened product.

[quote]

Well, you went in with an open product...

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#8 of 26 OFFLINE   Thomas_A

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Posted August 29 2001 - 09:17 AM

Our local wallmart had empty casses on its main shelf... I asked one day and they said that 1/4 DVD's were getting lifted...and the stores in a good area (not that thats important)... they still have the displays with the 14.95 and 9.95 ones..but you have to ask them for the new releases or one thats on the shelf..they have a locked filing cabinet..they keep them in..

oh well.. few spoil it for the rest eh?


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#9 of 26 OFFLINE   Joel Fontenot

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Posted August 29 2001 - 09:26 AM

So, Jeff, My question would be: how are they stealing the DVD's? Are they slitting the celophane wrapping? And if so, how does the plastic sticker stop that - it can be slit just as easily, can't it? And, how do they get the disc off the center spindle? Do they open the cases up all the way? This is assuming that they are only stealing the discs and not the whole case. Seems to me that the plastic case thingy some retailers but CD's in would work better - one modified to fit the DVD case. It has to be opened at the check-out counter, covers all sides of the case so that nothing can get to the edges - and if so, the disc itself can't get past it, and they won't be there at all on the DVD's you order on-line. Joel
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#10 of 26 OFFLINE   DarrinH

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Posted August 29 2001 - 09:37 AM

I hear ya Craig, I bought 3 DVDs at once the other day (not normal for me) and it took me something like 7 minutes to get them open in the car. I always open them after I get out of the store in case they are damaged. Three stickers each and they all had the magnetic device inside. But HOLY SH%$ Thomas A 1 out of every 4! I had no idea. I sometimes pick up one at Wal Mart but have not noticed open cases on the shelves before. I guess its no big deal as long as you can get the stickers off without damaging the cases. ------------------ The EC The Entertainment Cave "Why did I get mixed up with that Bi$%?" "Cause shes got a GREAT ASS! And you got your head...ALL THE WAY UP IT. Ferocious aren't I?"
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#11 of 26 OFFLINE   Clinton McClure

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Posted August 29 2001 - 09:44 AM

[quote]

Seems to me that the plastic case thingy some retailers but CD's in would work better - one modified to fit the DVD case. It has to be opened at the check-out counter, covers all sides of the case so that nothing can get to the edges - and if so, the disc itself can't get past it, and they won't be there at all on the DVD's you order on-line.

[quote]

Good idea, Joel. In fact, the local Hastings here does this very thing. All the DVDs, new and used, are in clear plastic "clamshells" which have to be opened using a special key at the registers. And to be sure no one walks out with them, the magnetic anti-theft strips are either on the outside of the shrink wrap covering the keepcase, or (unfortunately) on the inside of the keepcase. Well, you can't win 'em all.

I do not know how much this has deterred would-be thieves or what the theft rate is, but it would be very interesting to know.

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#12 of 26 OFFLINE   Jeff Wilson

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Posted August 29 2001 - 11:19 AM

As to how they were being lifted, some in snappers (like soft core porn), were simply ripped open and the thieves simply took the disc. All our discs were kept in security keepcases that required a key to unlock, but our initial batch had many defective ones and eventually, thieves would either melt the plastic lock or cut it off with some kind of wire cutters. It's amazing the lengths they would go to for a DVD or CD, but such is life.
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#13 of 26 OFFLINE   Kenneth English

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Posted August 29 2001 - 11:39 AM

[quote]

Do people really try to steal DVDs that are this cheap?

[quote]

Oh hell yeah! I once caught a kid trying to lift a couple of $.99 CDs from the budget bin. I truly believe it's a compulsion with most shoplifters. I'm convinced that most of the time they don't really want whatever it is they're stealing, they just want something that's stolen! Price is irrelevant.

The point of all this is that, regardless of how much it might tick you off, the minor inconvenience (stress minor) is nothing compared to the hit the store would take if they didn't take measures like this. And the cost in theft-losses would eventually make it back to you the customer.

I wish the studios had been doing this back when I was working retail.

#14 of 26 OFFLINE   Patrick Larkin

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Posted August 29 2001 - 11:49 AM

[quote]

thieves would either melt the plastic lock or cut it off with some kind of wire cutters.

[quote]

Sounds like Borders has a supervision problem! If someone is in that department all the time, I would think that the theft would be reduced.

Its a lot of hysteria. I remember working in a CD store in the old days. All CDs came in those giant cardboard boxes to presumably cut down on theft. We've successfully transitioned out of the cardboard on CDs.

Truth is that the margin is great enough on these items that retailers should suck it up or get more bodies in that department.

Add to that Blockbusters full disc stickers with metal bars and all sorts of writing...and then they want to sell those discs for $15-20 used!

#15 of 26 OFFLINE   Rob Gillespie

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Posted August 29 2001 - 11:59 AM

It's an inconvenience certainly, but it really only takes a few extra seconds to remove the security measures. It's not a case of insulting the law-abiding public who buy the discs, it's just to help stop the thieving little shits that make up the rest of population. That's just life, so get used to it. Shops should be clamping down on security. I get totally pissed off every time I hand over my credit card and the cashier doesn't even bother to check the signature. Now THAT's something to be concerned over.

[quote]

Of course I must sit through two minutes of copyright protection notices before I can finally select play.

[quote]

Two minutes? Take your DVD player off slow-motion Posted Image

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#16 of 26 OFFLINE   Tom Boucher

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Posted August 29 2001 - 12:35 PM

Back in the old days before Video Games were locked up they were just as bad.

I was looking at some titles on a shelf behind the clerks, when wham, four went sailing up over the back. I was puzzled (and 12) and walked around behind it to discover to 'parents' (i was young, it was a male & female) stuffing the games into a big comforter bag (inside the comforter)

I didn't know what to do, and should have told someone. It bothers me still that I said nothing, but I was so shocked I didn't know what to do. For all I know when I walked around the corner and caught them in the act they dropped & ran, but who knows.

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#17 of 26 OFFLINE   Ken_McAlinden

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Posted August 29 2001 - 01:01 PM

quote:
I get totally pissed off every time I hand over my credit card and the cashier doesn't even bother to check the signature.[/quote]Funny. I was in a CD shop a few days ago, and the cashier told the customer in front of me that he would have to show picture ID since his credit card was unsigned. He smiled and produced the ID saying that that was why he did not sign it. Being a nosy bastard, I glanced at his credit card and noticed that the signature section was entirely blank. If you are opting for this extra level of security, I strongly recommend that you at least take the time to write "please ask for photo ID" in the signature area of your card. It would kind of defeat the purpose if any old crook could sign your name in their handwriting. Regards, Ken "Hopelessly off-topic" McAlinden Livonia, MI USA [Edited last by Ken_McAlinden on August 29, 2001 at 04:02 PM]
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#18 of 26 OFFLINE   Kenneth English

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Posted August 29 2001 - 01:04 PM

Sorry, but supervision is not going to help much.

I know that sounds cynical but this view is based on hard experience. I worked in a mall store that was maybe a quarter the size of your average Best Buy and even on the weekends with a crew of like ten people on the floor at any given time we still took heavy losses.

Frankly I don't get what everyone is complaining about. Are you really telling me you're going to expend energy getting upset about a few pieces of adhesive-coated plastic? Ay carumba!

Gimme

a

break. Posted Image

Hey, everybody's entitled to their own opinion but this is a bit much.

#19 of 26 OFFLINE   John Torrez

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Posted August 29 2001 - 01:35 PM

I agree Kenneth, I don't mind those stickers at all. As long as it means that my dvd is safe, then I'm happy. ------------------ "They're all gonna laugh at you!"

#20 of 26 OFFLINE   Vince Maskeeper

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Posted August 29 2001 - 01:46 PM

I find it funny that we seek out the lowest prices but are amazed that the stores cannot provide better supervision over areas of the store. The reality of the modern world is that there are thieves, lots of theives. The only way to avoid inconviencing the honest shoppers would be to include the losses from theft into the price of the item.

No one here wants that. We'd rather go to the cheapest places and complain.

If it keeps prices down (costs of theft, costs of additional security and labor), I'm all for a silly sticker on all four sides of the disc!

[quote]

Funny. I was in a CD shop a few days ago, and the cashier told the customer in front of me that he would have to show picture ID since his credit card was unsigned. He smiled and produced the ID saying that that was why he did not sign it. Being a nosy bastard, I glanced at his credit card and noticed that the signature section was entirely blank.
If you are opting for this extra level of security, I strongly recommend that you at least take the time to write "please ask for photo ID" in the signature area of your card. It would kind of defeat the purpose if any old crook could sign your name in their handwriting.

[quote]

Indeed! I recall when I got my first credit card my dad gave me this same lame-brain advice; "don't sign it", he said, "they'll have to ask for ID".

Of course I pointed out to dad that anyone recovering the lost/stolen card could easily sign THEIR signature... foiling the "no signature" issue, and worse so making it so the card now contained their version of my sig!

Silly.

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