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Warner Brothers to Use BitTorrent

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May 09, 2006

Warner Brothers to Use BitTorrent

Heather Green

In a big step forward for file sharing technology, Warner Brothers is announcing today that it will sell movies and TV shows using BitTorrent.

Here's BW's story on the move. The service will launch this summer with more than 200 shows, including Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, The Matrix, and Babylon 5. The pricing of the shows, which will be sold using Microsoft copyprotecion, hasn't been set yet but wil start at $1.

Pretty much everyone following P2P has thought it was only a matter of time before major media companies adopted file sharing. With millions of users there to market to, the need to adapt to how people are getting their shows, and the cost benefits of using distributed technology, it just makes sense.

But I am still pretty amazed that Warner Brothers took this step, simply because the industry has had such animus for file sharing. Practicality wins out though!

In a conversation with Kevin Tsujihara, the President Warner Bros. Home Entertainment Group, I said you're starting with a small number of titles, how many do you plan to add?

His response? "We have to ramp this up, the long tail opportunities that the internet represents as a distribution channel imply we have to make a lot of our product available. 200 is just a drop in the bucket."

12:00 AM

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I think that the DirectTV, Dish Network business model is practical for distributing movies. This whole Internet as entertainment hub concept sounds great. You can hook the dish up to your PC and use it a DVR and go medialess and wireless. It's not like wireless is something new. Using the Internet to distribute movies seems expensive. I like DVD media because it is flexible. I can pop a disc in my PC or the player wired into the TV. It's also portable, so I can take it with me and watch it at a neighbors house or loan it. It's also dirt cheap to produce. It sounds like they are reinventing the wheel and it will be faster and safer with DRM copyprotection. The wheel in the sky keeps turning, while they are ramping something up. Don't let the world pass you by. Some things move faster than others. Others are just stopped dead, but not for lack of imagination.

Posted by: Jim Dermitt at May 9, 2006 06:23 AM

Interesting news. How they actually use it will be worth watching.

Posted by: csven at May 9, 2006 07:09 AM

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