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Why Doesn't Amazon/iTunes Offer SD/HD Digital Download Options Outside U.S. Territories? (1 Viewer)

Tony Bensley

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While my personal preference is for Physical Media, of late, I've found myself posting rants against the lack of accessibility regarding SD/HD Digital Downloads via the U.S. Amazon and iTunes platforms, for which there appears to be no viable equivalent in Canada, or so far as I know, anywhere else outside of the U.S and its Territories!

I do recognize that at least one reason why International customers cannot legally be permitted access to the aforementioned U.S. based Digital Download platforms is due to some titles not having release rights outside of U.S. Territories. My understanding is that the bulk of the Hal Roach sound film library is affected in that they don't include Canadian sublicensing, for instance!

The purpose of this topic is primarily to generate feedback from other International (Outside the U.S.) HTF members, including their own experiences in this area, and also any corrections and/or relevant updates regarding the stated subject matter! Any discussion relating to other heretofore U.S. only based Digital Download/Streaming platforms, such as Hulu, are also welcome!

Regards,

Anthony Bensley
 
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EricSchulz

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iTunes UK does offer both SD/HD options on movies, both rentals and purchases. If you go to the bottom of the main screen in iTunes, click on "change country" to see what is offered in any country that iTunes supports. HOWEVER, you cannot purchase or rent from outside the territory you are in for the rights reasons you touched on above. (I never understood this, since you can buy physical copies of CDs and DVDs/BDs on Amazon's foreign websites with no problem.) There are MANY artists I love that are huge in Europe but not here (or unsigned here) and I would LOVE to legally buy their music from iTunes/Amazon, but I am not allowed. And they wonder why people still download illegally. Rant over.
 

Tony Bensley

Senior HTF Member
Joined
Apr 9, 2013
Messages
6,962
Location
Somewhere in Canada
Real Name
Anthony
iTunes UK does offer both SD/HD options on movies, both rentals and purchases. If you go to the bottom of the main screen in iTunes, click on "change country" to see what is offered in any country that iTunes supports. HOWEVER, you cannot purchase or rent from outside the territory you are in for the rights reasons you touched on above. (I never understood this, since you can buy physical copies of CDs and DVDs/BDs on Amazon's foreign websites with no problem.) There are MANY artists I love that are huge in Europe but not here (or unsigned here) and I would LOVE to legally buy their music from iTunes/Amazon, but I am not allowed. And they wonder why people still download illegally. Rant over.
Hi Eric!

My theory is that it comes down to distribution. That is, while physical media cannot be legally prevented from being imported outside of whatever countries they are legally allowed to be produced, via the various International Postal/Shipping companies, non physical digital files can, and are restricted by dint of the fact they aren't physical objects, if that makes any sense!

What I do know for a fact by my own experience, is that Canadian based customers cannot access U.S. Amazon for ordering their SD/HD Digital Download Titles, as repeated attempts to order via that platform have been denied, even for Titles whose physical counterparts are otherwise available via Canadian Distribution, as opposed to importing.

One example that I'll cite here is THE MUNSTERS Season 1 and 2 sets by Universal that I ordered via Amazon Canada last year. AFAIK, these are not considered to be Import items, and yet when I attempted to order SD Digital downloads for the 3 episodes which contain original music that isn't included on the original DVDs via U.S. Amazon, I was denied access, though not specifically because of the music in question, but because they only offer the Digital Download option to U.S. based customers to begin with. This is where Amazon Canada's offering an equivalent service could be of some help!

CHEERS! :)

Tony
 
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