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Solution for studios (& fans) regarding low-selling shows...

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15 replies to this topic

#1 of 16 OFFLINE   todd s

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Posted September 16 2008 - 07:32 AM

After reading the transcript of the Warner chat. I saw a lot of shows that will not see future releases because of low sales. How about doing what Amazon is doing with some cartoon shows...Burn on demand. Say a show like Superboy. Its not feasible to release future seasons. How about working a deal with Amazon and do burn on demand? This seems to be the best way to satisfy both the fan and the studio accountants.
Bring back John Doe! Or at least resolve the cliff-hanger with a 2hr movie or as an extra on a dvd release.

#2 of 16 OFFLINE   Robert13


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Posted September 16 2008 - 07:45 AM

I'm all for it. I've loved the idea since I first read about it. I think more studios can get their properties out there this way. If they are going to do this, I would offer several seasons at once though. Here is my list of hopeful "burn on demand" titles for studios...

The Facts Of Life
Hart to Hart
What's Happening Now!!
Diff'rent Strokes
One in a Million
Archie Bunker's Place

She's The Sheriff
Mama's Family

Bagdad Café
Laverne & Shirley
Life With Lucy

Gimme a Break!

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#3 of 16 OFFLINE   David Levine

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Posted September 16 2008 - 07:57 AM

It's a very good idea in that it eliminates manufacturing, shipping and returns. I'd think it would work well with "easy" shows. Unfortunately it doesn't address things like music clearance or other legal issues (like in the Superboy example and with the battle over ownership of that particular name).

#4 of 16 OFFLINE   AndyMcKinney



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Posted September 16 2008 - 08:04 AM

My big problem with "burn on demand" (apart from not having a fast enough internet connection) is the fact you'd be archiving them on "burnt" media, which we all know is much more prone to failure after getting a small scratch, getting coughed on (kidding), etc.

What happens if that on-demand DVD-R you burnt 6-12 months ago is now no longer readable? You get a "free" do-over? I doubt it. I just hate the idea of paying for the "right" to put something on an unstable type of media. I much prefer the machine-pressed discs.

#5 of 16 OFFLINE   nikkif99uk


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Posted September 16 2008 - 08:12 AM

You don't need a fast internet connection. Amazon burns it and sends it to you in apparently according to reviews some pretty nice packaging. Agree about lifespan of the discs though

#6 of 16 OFFLINE   DeWilson



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Posted September 16 2008 - 09:15 AM

Here we go again about the "bugaboo" about burned media.

Folks, it's the QUALITY of the media NOT the overall technology!

The current "burn-on-demand" companies (and MOST of the underground stuff!) are using low-cost media that is sometimes poorly made just to save pennies.

All media isn't equal - it's down to the type of dyes used,the reflective surface and the quality control of the manfuacturing of the media.

Again, one of the BEST reads on the subject is at

digitalFAQ.com | Blank Video Media Quality Guide

As for "burning on demand" - you're only taking away the manufacturing costs which are minimal per unit. You still have the same licencing and royalty issues,mastering issues and so on.

#7 of 16 OFFLINE   John DeAngelis

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Posted September 16 2008 - 09:16 AM

Another option would be slightly higher-priced limited-availability DVD releases, the equivalent of Rhino Handmade and Hip-o Direct's CD releases.

#8 of 16 OFFLINE   AndyMcKinney



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Posted September 16 2008 - 09:46 AM

I agree with you that there are differing qualities of media, but surely you're not suggesting that a "burnt" disc on a "good" blank is going to be 100% (or nearly) as sturdy, reliable, resistant to becoming a coaster after scratches, etc. as a proper, machine-pressed DVD, when past experience would seem to indicate otherwise.

#9 of 16 OFFLINE   David Levine

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Posted September 16 2008 - 12:40 PM

Yes to the 2nd, no to the first. The big thing you are saving companies is returns and excess inventory. Retailers still overorder, and when something underperforms most of it goes back to the studio. That's why you see so many recent DVDs in Wal-Mart's dump bin and so many 3.00 DVDs at Big Lots. TV on DVD is a lot more expensive to produce, so it's harder to just take a huge loss on it. The major studios have literally millions (and in some cases, I've heard over a billion) of DVDs in excess inventory and the shareholders don't like seeing all that red on the ledgers. And with TV on DVD being so hit or miss, it's no wonder studios are gunshy about having to way overproduce sets that are potential bombs. Burn on Demand is far from perfect, but it eliminates that huge pitfall.

#10 of 16 OFFLINE   TV_Fan


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Posted September 16 2008 - 01:11 PM

Would this also explain the sales retailers constantly have like Best Buy & Amazon? I got nervous last year when I saw Fall Guy on sale at Best for like $20 very shortly after it came out and was retailing at like $60. Apparently I had good reson to be worried, because I have yet to hear word of a 2nd season being released. Best Buy & Wal Mart also sell a lot of DVDs for $13 but mostly ones that have been out for awhile like the early seasons of All In The Family & The Jeffersons.

#11 of 16 OFFLINE   David Levine

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Posted September 16 2008 - 01:29 PM

Absolutely. Go into a Best Buy on street date and you'll see 30 copies of a marginal studio new release. You know that one is going to be in a 9.99 sale with a month or 2 and it'll likely be a 4.99 title in as little as a few months. A lot of times studios would rather "take the hit" than take the return.

#12 of 16 OFFLINE   RickER



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Posted September 16 2008 - 01:48 PM

Andy, i agree with everything you say. I couldnt add a thing.

#13 of 16 OFFLINE   Mark Talmadge

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Posted September 17 2008 - 06:51 AM

The MPAA would never go for that in the first because there is too much temptation for piracy and what happens when someone, who has purchased a complete season and has burned it to a DVD wants to sell those shows they bought as "Burn on Demand" on such auction sites as eBay? The MPAA is very outspoken when it comes to burned media and I doubt they would allow something like this to go forward. Not only that, but the entertainment industry would be leaving out a very large customer support base. What do you about those famnilies who don't have internet access ... it really limits the profits that studios could receive from such an endeavor.

#14 of 16 OFFLINE   James Sajdak

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Posted September 18 2008 - 12:04 AM

I think Burn-On-Demand is a great idea. I first read about it about a year ago and thought it would be a great solution to getting obsecure and semi-unpopular content on DVD. If I'm not mistaken I believe that right now when clearing music and other rights for a release they pay an upfront cost to a particular person or persons. With the burn on demand technology if they could strike some sort of a deal to pay the licensing costs if and when a copy sells. I think to make the MPAA happy all they would have to do is add one of the DVD copy protection techniques and a region code to the disc. I think that both of there are capable of being done in the DVD Authoring software.

#15 of 16 OFFLINE   HenryDuBrow



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Posted September 18 2008 - 12:41 AM

With burn-on-demand, could we have every, say, Warner show to choose from or only a selected few? I mean, it's the more rarer shows we'd be interested in anyway, but maybe rights issues play into it too, leaving not everything doable.

#16 of 16 OFFLINE   David Levine

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Posted September 18 2008 - 04:14 AM

Rights issues would be the same as if they were selling complete sets at retail.

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