They have to be making SOME profit on the title to continue - and thankfully "off-the-shelf" masters exist.
I find it funny how even though Ironside isn't that great of a seller to begin with, Shout has no problem releasing more seasons of it. As for why certain shows get abandoned by big studios, it's because they don't make enough effort to let people know that they're available.
The problem is most MOD programs are using whatever the lowest cost media available, and not quality made media. Produced right - DVD-R/+R media should last decades. It goes down to the quality of the dyes, and the materials used to make the disc. What are the studios using?
Video quality of a release is all about the source used and what compression or other digital manipulations are performed. It has nothing to do with being released on MOD or pressed disks (i.e, bits are bits). When people discuss quality differences between MOD and pressed it is usually in reference to factors such as the possibility of stability and longevity differences. I'm not trying to introduce the debate to this thread or state a view (it's been discussed in plenty of other threads), but just trying to clear up what looked like a misconception of what the debate is about and nothing more. Enough said. Edit: Jeff beat me to it, I type to slow apparently :)
They can't make the numbers work as a standard DVD release with wider circulation, why would they wouldn't want to limit themselves to a "Select" release with limited distribution.
Peyton Place Fans thought that Shout Select would be the perfect fit for a series like Peyton Place. The name of the show still brings a smile to the faces of those who remember Peyton Place. The fact Fox would not deal with for the release of more episode's states much.