Are you sure that buying DVD from other regions are not in fact violating copyrights??No. A person is entitled to spend their money as they chose and there is no law against importing ( unless it's bootlegged or questionable X rated material I presume ). And besides, if you buy from abroad online, the transaction is made in the licensed territory. If it was illegal, then Amazon, Barns & Noble and who knows how many other online companies would have been in big trouble a long time ago.
Speaking of Titanic, it was distributed by Paramount in R1, but by 20th Fox in R2. Thus by buying R1 when living in R2 you're giving money to Paramount instead of 20th FOX... Shouldn't 20th Fox be mad?
Yes, it may well annoy Fox, but if they provide an equal or better quality disc for a reasonable cost, importing shouldn't be an issue. Don't forget Fox cause a lot of ill feeling as DVD was taking off in the UK by greedily setting the price of Titanic (and a few other titles) at £25 (about $40). They really only have themselves to blame for making imports seem so attractive.
Publishers also licence books to other publishers in other territories, but it has never ever been even been suggested by the publishing industry that importing books may be illegal.
Toy Biz action figures in the UK are imported and released by Playmates but nobody has ever suggested importing imported action figures is illegal.
I'm sure that there are lots of other examples.
The fact is importing items for personal use is only illegal in the rarest of cases and normally for health and safety reasons, and certainly never because the distribution rights are split over two territories. The MPPA saw a chance to 'enforce' distribution electronically and jumped at the chance.
Another reason why I have little love for the MPAA - their region coding system has basically created a new 'urban myth' - that importing DVDs is illegal. Something I'm quite sure was intentional and sadly, lots of people (especially in America, the centre of 'free trade') seem to believe.
No - unless, that is, you happen to be the proud owner of a multi-system TV (prevalent in PAL countries but afaik not so in the USA)...Actually, while I haven't tried it with a laptop, I have played a PAL DVD on a PC, sent the output to an NTSC TV, and had it work with no problems. I'm not sure what the precise technical explanation is, but roughly what happens is that the DVD software (or hardware, depending on what kind of MPEG2 decoder you're using) converts the PAL image to the computer's display format, and the video card converts the PC's video image (including the DVD video) to NTSC so that it can be sent out to a TV. However, I have heard of cases where the video out will send out everything on the computer screen out to the TV except the DVD video, in much the same way that you can take a capture of the entire screen while a DVD is playing (using the "Print Scrn" key) and the DVD image area will sometimes appear blank. I think this is a decoder-related issue.