Movie windows

As we all know, when a new movie comes out it’s first released for theaters

Several months later, retailers get the next window to sell the movie as a DVD.

Then months after that cable gets video on demand rights to that film.

These “windows” allow each distribution partner to maximize the economics of the film for their particular channel.

This morning I saw Peter Kafka’s story link on Twitter about the big Netflix/epix deal. It’s a big deal where netflix pays big bucks to epix for streaming rights to high quality films such as Iron Man etc.
(sorry no link since I’m typing this on my iPhone.)

I have the highest respect for Netflix and I’m a happy customer for years now.

But here’s the thing as Peter pointed out in his post on AllThingsD. Netflix is getting the Epix content after cable’s window.

For much of August we are renting an apartment in NYC. Our apartment has fantastic broadband but television comes from cable. ( I cant believe you all live with that crazy crusty guide on this time Warner set top box. Oh. My. God it’s awful.)

The person renting us this apartment doesn’t have hbo. Lauren and I are True Blood fans. At home we watch it on demand. At the apartment we can’t. I went to buy the latest episode on iTunes. Nothing except season 1 and 2. Then I went to amazon. Nada.

The only thing I could do was download an illegal copy. I downloaded the file in about 4minutes. I try to pay for content whenever I can and I don’t feel so bad because we dutifully pay for hbo at home. And I tried to buy it legitmately online as well.

Many people won’t go thru these hoops

Torrents are too easy, too high quality, and torrents don’t care about windows.

I don’t know the latest stats on torrent usage in the united states. I’m not sure if it’s growing fast but I will tell you unfortunately the ease of use and quality is stunning.

And that is a problem. I want content owners to get paid. That is why I pay for content.

But I think content owners need to get serious about the web. The network is getting too fast and software is getting too good to stick to the old rules about content distribution and monetization.