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July 16, 2007


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Jim S

On a recent long flight I found myself a captive audience for Miss Potter. Sweet flick; but two helpings may be like two pink packets in your iced tea.


Mr. Picker,

Could you expand more on the "first sale doctrine" with regards to this arrangement? Can I buy a case of Pepsi or Coca-Cola soft drinks and just sell them at the park during a little league game? What about Netflix interferring with contract (between Blockbuster and Weinstein), and aren't there restrictive terms for non-Blockbuster purchasers that they can't rent, license, etc. to others? Just want a clarification/understanding of this doctrine, thanks.


Is Netflix or Blockbuster actually buying DVDs? If they are leasing the DVDs, as is common in the industry, the first sale doctrine would likely not apply (though it would once the leasee is allowed to sell the DVDs to the public).

"Rentrak Corporation ( www.rentrak.com / Nasdaq: RENT) is an information management company and the world's largest processor of rental and sales data for home entertainment media obtained on a revenue–sharing basis. The company services most motion picture studios and thousands of retail video rental locations throughout the U.S. and Canada. Rentrak's Pay–Per–Transaction (PPT) system allows retailers to lease DVDs instead of purchasing them, which reduces retailer risk, effectively broadens and deepens video rental store inventory, and increases customer satisfaction."


My completely unsubstantiated guess here is that Blockbuster is going outside the usual channel, such as Rentrak, and leasing DVDs directly from the studio on a revenue-sharing basis.

Ben Gates

Whatever happened with the lawsuit that was filed against Blockbuster for false advertising in relation to their "no late fee" campaign? It seems like they have bounced back nicely since that event.

Ben Gates

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