Let's get physical...with our media! The relative merits of owning vs streaming

What a dumb move.

Maybe? I wouldn’t be surprised if the market for physical releases on DVD/Blu-Ray has shrunk to tiny at this point. Like with music, digital is just so much easier and since most consumers can’t even tell when they’re watching a 1080p movie, they don’t care about quality.

I care, though, so it’ll be a bummer if I can’t get 4K blu-rays of my favorites anymore.

Physical could survive through a “Print on Demand” model. I’ve gotten a bunch of classic aviation movies through Amazon where you order it and Warner basically burns it to a DVD-R with a printed cover.

But that would still require the rightsholders to master a 4K Blu-ray, and there’s the copy protection cruft to deal with, so not sure the market would justify it .

I suppose, but most pirated stuff online is gonna be webrips of streaming content anyway, so copy protection issues aren’t really going to move the needle too much. Blu ray drives, though firmware lock, can’t rip 4k Blu rays anyway.

I could see a lot of the most popular films getting the 4k Blu ray treatment, just as a small run thing for home theater enthusiasts, they could probably charge a lot for it too, and that audience will still buy, kind of like audiophile stuff.

I am completely fine just streaming or downloading everything for an initial watch (or going to theaters when available) but stuff I want to own there’s no question about me wanting it on disc. Highest quality available. Sadly, I am finding only the highest profile movies and a few HBO shows get the 4k treatment and that may not be reliably available. And for everything else… hell, you can’t even get Blurays of a lot of FX stuff. (Or physical versions of a lot of streaming-first stuff at all.) Makes me cranky.

I had forgotten about the funimation and Crunchyroll merger was going to screw over digital owners.

Digital copies you bought on the funimation app won’t transfer to Crunchyroll and are essentially gone forever.

It should be noted that Crunchyroll is owned by Sony. Sony has been really sketch with digital ownership in the past, so beware buying any digital media on their platform.

At least per that story, it’s more that digital versions you got access to by buying the physical version won’t carry over. Still a bit shitty but in theory everyone affected will still have (or will have sold) their physical version.

We’ve been streaming only since the move to the UK, which coincided with us not wanting too much stuff, and availability of digital media from that time on. That said, charity shops were great for kids’ DVDs, we had an almost full Disney animation library for £0.50-£1 a disc. Then, Disney+ came along and the selection was better, quality was better, and we freed up that space on the shelf.

Even before Disney+ came along we noticed the kids weren’t rewatching much at all, like we did as children, but I realize now it’s simply the profusion of choice. I watched Robocop and Star Wars a million times, but if there had been another 50 quality movies in the same vein (rather than three lower budget ripoff copycats that sat unrented in the video store), would I have?

Once in a while I notice compression issues (like in Dune and Arrival, where there is screen full of dark gradients, I swear Villeneuve’s DOP is doing it on purpose), it’s hardly chronic, and I have more issues with film grade being too dark, which is more a statement on older LCD tech than streaming.

But overall it would be a major expenditure of cash and house space for something that would almost never get a double dip. I’m even annoyed by my Wii+WiiU library that does get used tons by the kids, but eats up shelf space, and even that could potentially get bricked if Nintendo decided to, I suppose…

That is a good point! When I perused the store, it looked like they were selling digital copies, but I will bet they were selling physical copies and touting digital access. Services like Movies Anywhere allow you to redeem digital copies, but you can also buy digital films ala carte, I assumed Funimation was doing the same.

Still, this is why you gotta keep those physical copies in a storage crate somewhere, in case those digital services get tired of your permanent free access to streaming a title.

Sounds like they are working on a make good effort for customers, at least.

I guess it depends on what they are going to do. Sounds like for shows moving from Funimation to Crunchyroll they are granting access to watch the purchased shows without a premium paid account. But for titles not on Crunchyroll, who knows what they can do.

Is that what you took away from that article? To me it sounds like they’ve said they want to but there is not much sign of this happening and it’s unclear what they would actually do as a policy since they won’t be offering digital library functionality.

If you want to get all that out of your house, I’ll help you out and take them~

It also seems like something they are doing on a customer by customer basis, so it is hard to tell exactly what any “policy” would be, other than they want to attempt to make good in some way.

Haha, I bet! Funny thing is, when I was getting rid of the DVDs, the biggest struggle for people was that they didn’t have any devices that could play them. Some scrounged them up at cottages and such, but I didn’t quite realize the downfall of the optical drive as an entertainment device happened so rapidly. I had to remind some people to check for game consoles because they may have those with drives in them, even if they don’t play games anymore (a couple realized this after I mentioned it).

I’ll probably keep my BD collection until the next move as they are out of the way on their own wall right now and I’ve nothing to take up that space. Then it’ll be a wild free-for-all on them for sure.

You’re a trend setter!

I don’t have a massive collection, but if it’s a movie or show I really like and feel that I might want to rewatch it somewhere down the line, I’ll buy a physical copy. It’s just too frustrating to want to watch something, but have it vanish from services.

I was a big collector of DVDs/Blu Rays and stopped when I started using Netflix and Prime video more. But I’ve started buying stuff again the last two years or so. There are still certain films not available on streaming channels.

I’m a fan of Criterion Collection releases, too. The last couple of Blu Rays I bought were La Strada, The Complete Lady Snowblood, The Ministry of Fear and Three Outlaw Samurai. I think one or two of these are on Prime but via rental, and I’ve had issues with poor or inconsistent streaming quality on there; I’d rather watch the best-looking version of any given film.

I also like knowing that I can watch a film again when I want to and not have to wait for it to show up on anywhere. I realized, too, that I usually use Netflix for shows and made-for-Netflix stuff, and can’t remember the last time I saw a movie on there except for “The Irishman” which I started watching twice, but an hour in realized I didn’t have 4 hours to kill so that doesn’t count.

It’s nothing like @Equisilus collection, but here’s my modest flex

The shelves are 2 discs deep, and I have the 3rd shelf empty in this cabinet. Still a lot of room to grow!

My collection is just 2 20 gallon rubbermaid totes in the garage. I use plex to watch my collection.

Oh My I just scored a literal garbage bag full of 4K yesterday! On Facebook Marketplace 51 movies for $150 all 4k in good shape. Not sure if stolen, desperate for money or what but were two different lots of $200 and $100 initially then discounted to $100 and $65 a few days later. He gave me an extra discount for the drive for getting both of them. Yes, delivered in a garbage bag in the Dollar Tree parking lot 1.25 hours north of me.

Complete Star Wars collection, Batman Trilogy, some kids stuff etc. Little something for the whole family. Pretty much doubled my collection at less that $3 per. Disinfected the lot and checked for scratches. Nothing bad, tested 6 so far and all good.

I need to stop looking for good deals and watch something! Though the Family did enjoy Raiders of The Lost Ark on Saturday night. Kids had never seen it and wife hadn’t in 20 years. Good times!