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MPAA Kills More Innovation; Zediva Shut Down Permanently

from the what-you-have-to-look-forward-to-under-e-parasite dept

Keith alerts us to the unfortunate and premature death of Zediva, an innovative startup that sought to make it easier for people to rent movies and make money for Hollywood. But in true Hollywood fashion, they killed it -- just like they wanted to kill the VCR a couple decades ago. Zediva, if you don't recall, let people rent movies remotely. It would load them up in a DVD player that you could log into. It legitimately bought the DVDs and used them just as you would at home if you rented a DVD and brought it home. The only real difference here was that the DVD player was at a central location, rather than your home. In a very weird ruling, a court determined that the length of the cord determines if something is infringing.

Such a totally nonsensical ruling should be ripe for appeal... but appeals cost money, and who's going to invest in a company shut down by a court? So, Zediva has capitulated and "settled." MPAA gets to hang another destroyed innovation on its mantle.

If you want to get a sense of the future under E-PARASITE/SOPA: this is it. Except it's even worse. Chris Dodd and the MPAA won't even need to go to court, they can just send a single notice to the payment processor for Zediva, and the plug would be pulled. Dead. Basically, the law would let the luddites at the MPAA simply kill off any new service they don't like or don't understand. And unless those companies have a dozen lawyers at their disposal, they're going to stay dead. Just like Zediva. Another bit of innovation killed by the MPAA. What a legacy the MPAA is leaving behind.

Filed Under: e-parasite, innovation
Companies: mpaa, zediva


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  1. icon
    Scooters (profile), 31 Oct 2011 @ 10:01am

    Re: An innovative Startup?

    Agreed, and I never said anything because there are some around here who would think those objecting are in favor of the ruling.

    I can't fathom 2 million DVD players residing at a facility, and if this didn't get shut down, the concept was far too stupid to sustain itself.

    I'm glad it was shut down, though I don't like the way it was handled. Investors should have shut this down long before they gave it a single dollar.

    Instead, they should have invested in 1000 domains pointing to the same digital file. This way, when Hollywood went after one site, the other 999 could still make money.

    I'd like to know why no one turns the cameras onto this industry with its blatant law-breaking tactics to keep companies like Redbox from flourishing without having to "make deals" like Blockbuster did.

    Piracy didn't kill Blockbuster. Hollywood did.

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