DVD Madness

My wife and I are preparing for a trip, and one of the most important steps is loading up our iPods with stuff to watch and listen to on the plane. This is usually an easy, but time consuming task using software like Handbrake.

I went to transfer “WALL-E”, and found it included a digital copy. I had heard and read about this new technology, but never ran into it until now. I popped the disk into my Mac, and it showed up in iTunes, prompting me if I wanted to move it to my library. I entered a code included in the box, and about 30 seconds later, I had an iPod ready copy to watch.

I do find it mildly annoying that it still includes DRM, but for the moment, everything I would use to watch it is in the Apple “ecosystem” (all part of their master plan, no doubt…). It plays on my iPod and AppleTV with no problem. Why it is called a “digital copy”, I have no idea. (folks, DVD is ALREADY digital. oh well.)

I continued through several other DVD’s the “traditional” way. My wife put “Sex and the City” in the pile, and, it too, included a digital copy. Cool. I popped it in, but iTunes didn’t pick it up. The card in the DVD box had a similar code, but this time referenced a website to go to. Ok, different studio, maybe different process. Visiting the website revealed that they want an additional $1.99 for this digital copy. Arrrr!

I believe media piracy is wrong - it is stealing and is inexcusable. But I don’t believe that I should have to pay a second time for something I already own, just to watch it on a different sized screen. While I credit Warner Bros for capitalizing on a new idea, they are hurting themselves long term by not simply embracing the fact that consumers want to be able to listen and view their media anywhere!