Saturday, December 17, 2005

Exclusives, Schmexclusives...

It hasn’t affected me yet on anything I wanted to buy, but it’s a disturbing trend that DVD sets (movies and television) keep popping up with “special bonus” discs at different retailers. There’s even a website you can find via that is trying to keep track of all the different bonus discs and locations.

Why aren’t these “bonuses” included as standard on the DVD’s? I don’t want to have to run around to only certain stores to get the ‘complete’ material. In fact, I won’t. Screw the ‘bonus.’

I know stores are trying anything these days to get your dollar, but the continued trend of exclusives is disturbing. Once a store gets an exclusive, they can put whatever price they want on it and you can’t do a damn thing about it. There is no competition to drive a fair price.

Two cases in point: the 4th season of ER on DVD, and the Garth Brooks collection at Wal-mart. ER’s 4th season kicked off with a live show done twice – once for the east coast time and one for the west coast time. Warner Bros decided to only include the west coast version on the season set. Well, after some pushing, they decided to included the east coast version as well – but only as a bonus available at Target only. Now, it’s great that they smartened up and made both episodes available, but the point is WB screwed up and should have made both shows available on the set that would be sold everywhere. Now, I don’t want the 4th season of ER, but if I did, I’d be upset that I have to go to Target to get the complete season. Not to mention the fact – where the hell am I going to find a Target store in Canada?!

Still not sure about the Garth Brooks deal with Wal-Mart. After watching an interview with him describing the process and how the deal wound up wasn’t plan A, I can understand a bit better what he did. When you’re not getting much support from the usual suspects, and a huge company like Wal-Mart steps up, you do what you see fit to get your product out. However, I can understand why other retailers were threatening to pull all Garth product from the shelves. This is sure to sell, and they don’t get a crack at it. Now for me, all I want is the disc of previously unreleased material, and I don’t feel like being forced to go to Wal-Mart and buy the whole box set including material I already own just to get it. Now, having heard that part of plan A was to release that disc separate in time, I’m in a holding pattern to wait and see if that is still part of plan B. Time will tell.

Bottom line – I’d rather miss out on a few “bonuses” than be forced to play their game of run around to try to find the right ‘exclusive’ location. Besides, my rate of DVD / CD purchases has recently dropped below the Mendoza line, so it’s not like it matters much…

Comments on "Exclusives, Schmexclusives..."


Blogger The Original LRU said ... (December 18, 2005 3:35 AM) : 

Jerking the customer around in this manner just helps make internet bootleg copies of these "exclusive materials" look that much more attractive.

I think it was k.d.lang who said that you have to respect your audience; without them, you're just standing alone, singing to yourself.

The media companies could learn something from that.


Blogger Eaglewing said ... (December 18, 2005 7:18 PM) : 

Huh, an applicable quote from k.d. lang, of all people...who knew?

Yeah, it doesn't look like media companies understand that making your product more "exclusive" and hard to get doesn't exactly drive consumer interest and money spending ways...


Blogger The Original LRU said ... (December 19, 2005 2:01 AM) : 

Well, sometimes it does, but the way they are doing it is irritating their own customers.

I don't know the details of the Garth Brooks case, but it sounds like he was "forced" into it by uncooperative studios or distributors.

Which doesn't make sense to me. I think a lot of country music fans would love to see Garth Brooks return full blast. I know I would, just to see what kind of music he'd bring. I might even buy a CD if it was new and I liked it. But if the only way to buy it would be to support Walmart, it would be like reaching into the toilet to retrieve a lost comb: it stinks. You know you want it, but you're not sure it's worth it.


Blogger Eaglewing said ... (December 23, 2005 3:43 PM) : 

"it would be like reaching into the toilet to retrieve a lost comb: it stinks. You know you want it, but you're not sure it's worth it"

haha, that's an excellent metaphor...I wish I had thought of that. Plus, comparing Walmart to a toilet is priceless...


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