adventurelandIt seems retailers are catching a lot of grief from consumers over the 12 month unlocking window on digital copies included with movies, most specifically on Blu-ray.

Digital copies of films have become a popular bonus on many DVD & Blu-ray sets as of late, but how many consumers know that you only generally have twelve months from the initial release of the film to activate them?  According to a recent article in Video Business magazine, retailers are hearing more complaints from customers, and they’re even more concerned as big films like The Dark Knight will be expiring soon.

Considering the sales pace of Blu-ray titles, people are still picking upfilms long after the release date thinking that they have an unlimited amount of time to move the copies on to their computers or media players.  Anonymous retailer source told Video Business that they have talked with the major studios about the issues, and the majority of them have been of the mind, “So?”

Only Disney has made any move towards fixing the problem by extending the availability window out to eighteen months.  While this still isn’t a perfect solution, it is a step in the right direction so long as the cut off date is made a bit more clear.  The first title to benefit from this new release window will be the comedy, Adventureland.

I will say that digital copies have been a selling point for me on some titles and I only saw a cut-off date for the first time with a title I bought on July 28th of this year, Green Lantern: First Flight.  I grabbed my Blu-ray copy of The Dark Knight, and I see no indication on it of there being a limited window of time to get my digital copy of it.  The retailers are certainly correct that this is something that needs to be addressed by the studios, and why they don’t see the need to inform consumers is disturbing.  If you advertise a major feature on the outside of a package, then you need to also state that is available only for a limited time.  Disney can extend its window all it wants, but will they make it clear that is the cut-off?

Categories: Video   
 

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