Back in January I mentioned that Warner Brothers was pushing Netflix and Redbox into deals where they would not receive new DVDs until 28 days after the release date. (WB being under the impression that making it more difficult to rent films will cause people to buy them instead…) I said that I disapproved of that sort of customer-corralling, and thought it to be a rather bad business practice.
Well, it seems it’s time for an update on that…
Blockbuster, the decaying brick-and-mortar movie rental behemoth, will still be getting their new releases as they come out. The deal inked with Warner Brothers doesn’t just give Blockbuster a competitive edge to prop-up their failing business with, but it may mean that Blockbuster will be the only rental service to have new releases on their launch date.
In its announcement, Warner reaffirmed its commitment to assuring that Blockbuster remains the “only multichannel provider that has every hot new movie on the day of its release.” Indeed, with the agreements it struck with more innovative and competitive movie rental services like Netflix and Redbox, Blockbuster really is the only mainstream way for people to get movies on release day without buying them.
Can you say antitrust?