Thursday, January 15, 2004

GASP! Oscar movie finds itself online ... by itself!

The Los Angeles Times today has a story on the Oscar movies finding their way online ...


It's quite an interesting story - but not a surprising one.

I visited New York when I was in my early 20's, I met a woman who worked for a couple of Oscar voters. Back then - before the day of DVDs and P2P networks - she would loan the movies to her friends to watch, and maybe dub.

In other words, the eBaying and Sharing of the Oscar movies - which tend to still be in the theaters at the time the DVDs are sent out to the Oscar voters - has been going on, but it's just more advanced. This isn't new, it's just that there is a bigger audience that it is now reaching.

One thing that is impressive is how quickly the Oscars have responded to the problem, and the safeguards they had in place. The movies were encoded with tags that let the Oscars know where the tapes came from. No, surprisingly, blow-ups by the MPAA on the evilness of file-sharing, or how it's going to be the end of movies as we know it. Wait, though, because Valenti said the same thing about VCRs.

Right now, though, it's being handled quite well - there has been a link, indubitably assistants will be fired, but it's been hopefully contained.

Jack the Ripper - get it, ripping DVDs?!? - seemed fitting. Plus, it's LL Cool James, and the ladies love cool James.
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