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Mdeii Life - Anand Krishnamoorthi's blog

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Now the home-video boom starts in Chennai

I mean the official version of the home-video boom. Currently, a very large part of the home video market, at-least in TN is hogged by the Thiruttu VCD 'pirates'. And I tell you, no matter how much I am supposed to hate them (for I am part of the industry that is purported to 'suffer' because of them), I can only blame the industry for not being shrewd enough to not cash in on consumer needs. A need that the bootleggers filled really well.

Maybe the industry is still nostalgic about theatrical, box-office collections (or of-late, satellite rights), or idiotic enough to not realise that the market is big enough to go low-price.

The word 'pirates' itself is fairly romantic and inaccurate. Their operations are in-fact as properly streamlined, and as tuned to demand-and-supply economics as any other industry. (They even have a long-tail—Bergman is very popular you see!). They have a very good distribution system, including young men selling DVD's in railway compartments along with peanuts and plantains.

The only problem is that they are doing something technically illegal, and therefore are subject to extortion from the anti-piracy squads. This cost, the pirates pass on to the consumer; but since the scale of operations is so huge, they can still beat the horribly expensive prices quoted by the 'official' vendors.

Now, the pirates obviously save on 'rights costs', but incur the comparable 'maamool' instead. So, if only somebody could make the 'official' duplication and distribution cheap.

Moser Baer proposes to do just that (warning! PDF link). And the prices they quote seem to be in line with my assumption about the 'rights costs'.

This is the way to beat piracy. Not by creating stupid regulations that line the pockets of inspectors. Bootleggers show up where consumers feel official vendors overprice; and piracy does not go away while they can bribe the inspectors, and yet give the consumer a good-deal. The money only comes back into the industry when piracy inspectors fund films.

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2:26 pm


Comments to Now the home-video boom starts in Chennai

You have a point there, Anand.

posted by Anonymous Gasquet Fan 

4:20 pm, January 14, 2007

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