Monday, May 30, 2005

Clash of the formats

It is really hard to believe that the DVD is only about six years old. I was watching "Best In Show," a comedy that was released on VHS in early 2001, and there was a promotional trailer for the wonders of DVD technology. And despite how utterly ubiquitous the DVD is now, there was a time in recent memory in which it did not have the same kind of place in society. Honestly, do you remember when rental places actually rented out tapes? It's not just a fairytale. Is it just me, or is it hard to believe in life before the DVD? Or the internet? And for me, the span of time in which I have had access to both is only my university years. Crazy.
I don't think that the VHS format will be completely done anytime soon, since there are still so many things that are only available on VHS. But over time, it will be rendered more and more useless. I still watch things on VHS, but generally only things that are not available on DVD. I will always choose DVD if I can. In the same way, I will always choose widescreen over fullscreen. Every time. Does that make me an elitist, or just sensitive to minor issues like that? I don't know. What I do know is that DVDs are great, but tapes have done me good too. I'm sure I'll still use my VCR for years to come. After all, I doubt there's a great demand to put the entire Rock 'Em Sock 'Em hockey series on DVD. Until that point, I'll keep using both formats in a peaceful coexistence of technology.


  1. A few thoughts:

    a.) My favourite part of those ads is how awkwardly the announcer says "DVD." He puts the accent on every letter and says it too slowly, like this is the first time he's heard of one.

    b.) I own most of my favourite movies on VHS, and am too cheap to buy them also on DVD, and so my VCR will be useful for years to come. As well, VCRs are good for recording. (Yes, I know there's other stuff now, but again: cheap.)

    c.) I love special features on DVDs. They make me insanely happy. And nothing makes me more irritated than when a DVD doesn't have any good special features.

  2. Anonymous30.5.05

    I am so a widescreen fan too. I nearly cried when I realized that my copy of Rushmore was fullscreen. But, I am afraid that it does make us elitist. It's because we're so proud of how clever we can be noticing the artistic brilliance of widescreen that we choose it.



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