Does an Increase in V.O.D decrease Film as a product?

Throughout the years i have seen a decrease in interest in DVDs and altogether films as a product. In this article I investigate the reasons why this is happening and also the advantages and disadvantages of this new digital age for Films.

Film reel and slate 

Issue in the film industry: The devaluation of film as a product 

One problem I have identified in the film industry is the Devaluation of film as a product. Films are becoming a lot less valuable as technology advances and streaming content on mass corrodes the pricing model of DVDs and Blu-ray. With this technology V.O.D (Video on Demand) sites are becoming much more common in family homes and are coming standard with new smart tv’s. Not to mention a lot of illegal sites where films are pirated are becoming a lot more frequent. A quote from Martin Scorsese “In relying on algorithms to introduce viewers to new projects. They are solely treated as “consumers” and art is devalued” this quote really stuck with me as it perfectly explains this issue. For example, the idea that viewers of films are no longer film enthusiasts and are not attracted to these productions because of the specific art form. But are attracted more for the entertainment and are treated by these film companies to make profit. 

Throughout my time in social media and observing the film industry I have perceived this issue in a lot of people including myself since when I may go to a shop and notice myself and my family take zero consideration of the DVD and Blu-Ray aisle. Which really juxtaposes my attitudes that I had when I was a small child and did not operate a mobile phone or television box. Another way I have perceived this issue is the fact that I do not use my DVD player anymore, despite the enormous collection of DVDs my family has collected over the years. This increase in VOD (Video on Demand) has made society lazier overall but also has made them more aware of how much money they should spend when it comes to personal entertainment. 

Advantages: One advantage of this problem is the fact that these V.O.D (Video on Demand) platforms such as Netflix, itvX, iPlayer have seen a huge increase in their popularity and viewings. according to a recent report that suggests that viewing through a video on demand service has grown 155% year on year, live streams and viewing up 93% and the average viewing time per session is 26.4 percent (Dacast.com). Another advantage is that film companies can benefit from this V.O.D increase by licensing their own films to these services and increase their range of viewers significantly by getting people that do not watch or buy DVDs ultimately. Another advantage is people become more engaged in the film industry which would then mean they are more urged to buy a physical copy of the films they like. Relating to this, VOD services have a wider range of films to view and browse through which ultimately means that people will find it quite straightforward to find something they are interested and engaged in. (Dacast.com) 

Disadvantages: One disadvantage to this problem is the obvious idea that DVDs will become less and less valued and therefore may further die out. Another disadvantage of more people using V.O.D is that a lot of desired content is not available in certain locations, this would mean that some users may not gain access to the content they covet. This problem is also taking its toll on all the film crew both post and pre-production. Roles such as film producers, distributors, actors, PR firms and hotels will all feel the knock-on effect due to less money being designated due to less sales. This problem will also influence the motivation of these companies and its staff due to their hard work being less appreciated and less rewarding. V.O.D is sucking out the enjoyment of going to the cinema with friends and family and decreasing the amount of times family connects with one another since Henry Jenkins stated in 2006 that the introduction of web 2.0 technologies now allows people to consume media without leaving the comfort of their own home. These technologies include V.O.D services which is a huge explanation to why Films as a product are not merited like they used to be. 

In conclusion, in my opinion Film being devalued significantly is upsetting to see. Especially since a grew up before the digital age really blew up and films started to become a lot more accessible on smart TVs and V.O.D. Some of my best moments are coming home to new DVDs and VHS tapes and watching them relentlessly. I loved that so much and seeing it become almost forgotten in the past makes me regret taking it for granted. However, I do extensively use things such as Netflix and BBC iPlayer very easily and it is enough to satisfy my little film crazy mind, although i will always miss the old days. 



Author

Jamie Long

Jamie Long

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1 Comments

  • Shaun Wong

    On 13 March 2024, 14:00 Shaun Wong commented:

    What an amazing discovery, I have never been such a massive enthusiast on film, however I do believe they should be kept as a tangible artefact and memory that people can cherish. i loved your quote from Martin Scorsese, of all people i love that he understands the true value of Films. Great blog !!!

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