Saturday, 13 November 2010

DVDs and why I hate them (That includes Blu-ray too)

Each time I play a DVD that I have bought legitimately from a recognised outlet, I spend a few minutes being informed that it is copyright and I am given threats and menaces that if I even thought about copying it I would receive a visit from the men in black and would never be seen again in this life. This section of the DVD does not respond to the controls so I cannot skip it but must see the same message over and over and over, each time I insert any DVD. My memory is quite good, I do not need to be reminded each time I want to use their product.
In any other circumstances this would be considered very poor customer relations. Imagine being prevented from entering a store until they have lectured you on the illegality of shoplifting and not letting you in until they have given you the full and detailed message.
Or boarding a train at the station and the train will not move off until all the safety warnings have been read out to the new passengers.
Unfairly, if I had actually gone out and bought an illegal copy of a DVD I would be spared this annoying feature, but because I am an honest upright citizen and feel it is fair and just to pay for something someone else has made, I am hassled by the very people who should by rights be rewarding me for being their honest to goodness customer.
Are the makers of DVDs so stupid that they believe a notice is going to protect their intellectual property and don’t they understand, they are telling the wrong person anyway? I cannot imagine that these notices and threats will have any effect on the real DVD pirates, especially since many of them live in countries outside the jurisdiction of any anti software theft organisations.
The next irritation is that annoying menu that sits and repeats a burst of the theme music whilst showing a snatch of the movie and inviting you to ‘Play the Movie’, ‘select a chapter’ or look at the incredibly unnecessary extra ‘special features’ they have added to the disk.
When we are actually allowed to start the movie by selecting the right bit of this menu, something that is not always straightforward, since some menus highlight the selected bit quite clearly and others do not, we are treated to another burst of brand names, distributers, producers, directors, co-directors, producer’s assistants, gaffers, gaffer’s assistant and girlfriends and dogs.
In any event, I don’t need a menu to play the movie that is why I bought the darned thing in the first place, just play the movie. Why for goodness sake do I need to select it? By rights I should be able to put it in the slot, press play and watch the movie I actually paid for, seems simple enough to me.


  1. Yes, this is really worth moaning about - I agree with you wholeheartedly.I have reverted to my second childhood and often watch an episode of the the Brady Bunch (did you ever get that in the UK?)on my little DVD player before I fall asleep at night, and what with having to wait through all the FBI men-in-black warnings, and then go through all the menu to find the next episode, I am almost asleep anyway. It's time to fight back! I am going to boycott the Brady Bunch!

  2. The bit I dislike about dvd's is the so called 'specials' that dismantle the impact of the film by telling every minutiae of special effect, costume design, etc. Oh, and the long string of trailers for other films that you're not allowed to skip through. Give me a good book, anyday. x