Piracy Prompts Film Strike in India
Ongoing financial losses to the Indian film industry from widespread video piracy provoked a one-day strike last week in the city of Bombay. On Tuesday, August 14, about 5000 people---including actors, producers, directors, and technical workers---streamed into the city's business district in a protest march from the suburb of Bandra. The strike was led by the Film Makers Combine, an industry association that called on the Indian government to step up enforcement of copyright laws.
Worldwide DVD Replication to Reach 1.28 Billion Units by 2002
At the DVD Production '98 conference last week, the International Recording Media Association (IRMA) released sales forecasts for the growth and worldwide expansion of the international DVD marketplace. The numbers are part of a study on the growth and direction of the world optical-media marketplace.
Two More Major Studios Announce Open-DVD Support
It's been a glorious week for folks who rent or buy open-DVD videos. <A HREF="http://www.paramount.com">Paramount Home Video</A> and <A HREF="http://www.foxhome.com/">Twentieth Century Fox</A> have each announced a string of releases that signal their entry into the open-DVD market. Both companies, relative laggards in the rollout of the new format, have said that copyright issues are the delaying factor.
Sony Modifies Handycam; Too Revealing, Say Execs
In the comic books of the 1960s, "X-Ray Specs" were hot commodities in the back-page ads. The mail-order eyeware supposedly enabled users to see through walls, doors, and ordinary clothing---a compelling motivation for millions of adolescent males who saved their lunch money for weeks to buy them. In what was probably their first introduction to marketing hype, the disappointed boys discovered that the specs were a fraud.
CEMA: Public Awareness of HDTV Growing
Public awareness of HDTV has almost doubled in the past year, according to a survey recently conducted by the <A HREF="http://www.cemacity.org/">Consumer Electronics Manufacturers Association</A>. Over the week of July 6-14, CEMA interviewed 1000 adults, selected at random, to find out how far the coming television format has penetrated into the American consciousness.
Divx Gains Another Retail Ally
All Dressed Up and Nowhere to Go---Yet
Sandor Hasznos of Denver, Colorado, purchased a television on July 31, and it was delivered last week. This might not seem like a big deal---unless you consider that this was the first HDTV officially sold in the US. The set, a <A HREF="http://www.panasonic.com">Panasonic</A> PT-56WXF90, was the first one bought at <A HREF="http://www.ultimateelectronics.com">Ultimate Electronics</A> during an HDTV preview event that drew over 4000 digital-television enthusiasts.
Video-On-Demand Gets Another Boost
The new holy grail of the media business is video-on-demand (VOD)---the ability to make high-quality video, audio, and Web content available on customers' TVs when they want it, not according to a broadcaster's schedule. When you add shopping-on-demand supported by live video and sound, you have the makings of a new media empire.
Image Entertainment Lawsuit Threatens Seagram/PolyGram Deal
Cable Industry Will Lead Net TV, SRI Study Says
Currently, a relative handful of people worldwide subscribe to Internet-on-TV services. However, according to a recent study by <A HREF="http://www.sriconsulting.com/">SRI Consulting</A>, a research firm based in Menlo Park, California, the number of Net-TV subscribers will mushroom to over 12 million in less than four years, and the cable industry is in the best position to serve these new customers.