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Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Disney Offers Product Exchanges and Refunds for Baby Einstein™ DVDs

Focusing on ensuring the satisfaction of their customers, Disney is offering product exchanges and retail value refunds for Baby Einstein™ DVD titles.  From now until March 4, 2010, customers who purchased Baby Einstein DVD products between June 5, 2004 and September 4, 2009 and are looking to exchange or receive a refund for their products may do so by visiting  This link also provides complete details on Disney’s Baby Einstein™ DVD Guarantee/Upgrade Offer, including participation guidelines.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Blu-ray Combo Packs: Midwest Tape Needs Your Feedback

The Blu-ray Disc™ versions of Gran Torino, Snow White, 17 Again, Hannah Montana: The Movie, and an array of Disney titles all come with a DVD version of the film within their Blu-ray packaging (some for only a limited time).  We understand that these alternative packaging schemes (i.e., Blu-ray “Combo Packs”) can disrupt normal processing and cataloging workflows.  Therefore, we’d love to hear your feedback, particularly to the following two questions:

How do you deal with Blu-ray Combo Packs within your library?

Would you wait to order the Blu-ray version of a title if you knew it would be available later without the additional DVD?

Please include the question(s) you're responding to as well as your contact information in your comment.  Thanks. 

Thursday, October 15, 2009

New Moon Street Date Bumps Up, Available This Friday

Due to intense anticipation from diehard Twilight Saga fans, Atlantic Records has pushed the release date of the New Moon Motion Picture Soundtrack (WEM965692C) up to this coming Friday, October 16th, 2009.  The album (which features such top artists as Death Cab for Cutie, The Killers, and Thom Yorke) was previously scheduled to hit shelves on October 20th.  However, an increase in buzz, along with an early internet leak last weekend, triggered the bump in street date.

If you have already received your copies of the soundtrack, you can display them starting on Friday, October 16th, 2009 instead of waiting until Tuesday.  Please post any questions you have as comments, or call Customer Service at 1.800.875.2785.

Friday, October 9, 2009

20th Century Fox Distributing Rental Editions of DVD Titles

As studios look to maintain revenues during these tough economic times, more and more of them are offering rental and retail editions of select DVD titles.  Rental editions are meant for any organization that loans their materials, whether home video rental businesses or libraries.  Retail editions are meant for the home video consumer marketplace.

Similar to Paramount’s two-tiered releasing strategy (“Paramount Experiments with Two-Tiered Pricing on Upcoming DVD Releases”), 20th Century Fox will also now offer rental and retail editions of select DVD titles.  However, Fox’s strategy differs in that both the rental and retail editions of their titles will feature the exact same edits of the films and will be the same price.  Additionally, rental editions will not contain any bonus features, but they will contain additional movie trailers and previews. Retail editions will have bonus features.

Libraries ordering rental versions will receive their orders before street date.  Because shipping dates for retail editions from Fox can vary, customers who order the retail edition of a title are not guaranteed to receive it before street date.  Midwest Tape recommends that libraries purchase the rental edition of Fox’s DVDs in order to receive them before street date.

As more studios follow suit in releasing different editions of select DVD titles, we’re developing ways to make these different versions even more apparent on our website.  Starting today (Friday, October 9, 2009), when users search on, any DVD titles that have retail and rental editions will be marked with corresponding symbols.  Similar to our cart symbol, when a user mouses over the retail/rental symbols, text boxes will appear that provide general information of that particular studio’s rental/retail DVD release strategies.  Additionally, the titles will feature in parentheses whether they’re retail or rental editions in their title lines.  Please reference the screenshots below to view examples of these symbols and title line labels.

Retail Edition of Night at the Museum: Battle at the Smithsonian

Retail Edition of Night at the Museum: Battle at the Smithsonian with mouseover text

Rental Edition of Night at the Museum: Battle at the Smithsonian

Rental Edition of Night at the Museum: Battle at the Smithsonian with mouseover text

Below is a list of the current rental editions provided by Fox.  We have moved all Fox retail edition orders to the rental editions to ensure deliveries before street dates.  If you would like the retail versions of any of these titles instead, please contact Customer Service at 800.875.2785.

Stock Number
Ice Age 3: Dawn Of The Dinosaurs
Rental: TWT2262514D
Retail: TWT2262512D
Aliens In The Attic
Rental: TWT2261098D
Retail: TWT2261096D
I Love You, Beth Cooper
Rental: TWT2261078D
Retail: TWT2261076D
Night At The Museum: Battle Of The Smithsonian
Rental: TWT2262590D
Retail: TWT2262588D
500 Days Of Summer
Rental: TWT2263464D
Retail: TWT2263462D

If you have any questions regarding Fox’s (or any studio’s) two-type DVD strategy, the content of retail and rental editions, and/or the updates we’ve made to our website in regards to these two DVD types, please post them here as comments or contact our Customer Service Department at 800.875.2785.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Paramount Experiments with Two-Tiered Pricing on Upcoming DVD Releases

Paramount Home Entertainment has introduced a two-tiered pricing model on select titles.  Paramount is releasing some small box office as well as straight-to-DVD titles as rental versions.  After unveiling the rental editions, Paramount will then release retail versions for the consumer marketplace.

The differences between retail and rental editions vary per title.  While all rental versions are higher-priced and have earlier release dates than retail editions, some rental versions lack any bonus or special features.  Additionally, ratings can differ between both editions.  In some cases, Paramount releases Blu-ray editions for retail purchase on the same day as the rental edition.

Video Business notes that Paramount individually evaluates their titles and implements this pricing and releasing strategy on a case-by-case basis¹. Furthermore, as Paramount experiments with two-tiered pricing and releasing, other studios might test similar strategies as well.  For instance, Sony Pictures Home Entertainment tried this strategy with one title, The Maiden Heist, a $20,000 box office title starring Morgan Freeman and Christopher Walken.  When any studio experiments with this strategy, we’ll be sure to keep our customers informed.

Paramount first began this two-tiered pricing model on the small box office feature film, Dance Flick.  On September 8th, 2009, Paramount released the Blu-ray edition and rental edition of Dance Flick.  The rental edition did not include director commentary or bonus features.  Intended for video rental, this higher-priced edition was not available for purchase in retail stores and had a limited availability.  Roughly six weeks later, the retail DVD edition of this title—which features extras and commentary and is unrated—will hit retailers’ shelves on October 6, 2009.

In the future, Paramount will release a handful of other feature films using this staggered-release, two-tiered pricing model.  Please reference the chart below for the titles Paramount is releasing under this strategy; (this chart also features Sony Pictures Home Entertainment’s one title).

Stock Numbers
Street Dates
Key Differences
Dance Flick
Rental: PAR352604D
Rental: $32.99
Rental: 09/08/2009
Retail edition is unrated and has bonus features. Blu-ray edition releases with Rental edition.
Retail: PAR352604RD
Retail: $19.99
Retail: 10/06/2009
Imagine That
Rental: PAR7906806D
Rental: $32.99
Rental: 10/06/2009
Both versions feature the theatrical edit of the film. Blu-ray edition releases with Rental edition.
Retail: PAR7906806RD
Retail: $19.99
Retail: 11/24/2009
The Goods: Live Hard, Sell Hard
Rental: PAR7906726D
Rental: $28.49
Rental: 11/10/2009
No corresponding Blu-ray release. 
Retail: PAR7906726RD
Retail: $17.24
Retail: 12/15/2009
The Marc Pease
Rental: PAR7906104D
Rental: $26.99
Rental: 11/03/2009
Straight-to-DVD title. No corresponding Blu-ray release. 
Retail: PAR7906104RD
Retail: $14.99
Retail: 12/08/2009
Wrong Turn at Tahoe
Rental: PAR7906708D
Rental: $26.99
Rental: 11/17/2009
Straight-to-DVD title. No corresponding Blu-ray release.  Retail edition will include a “making-of” bonus feature.
Retail: PAR7906708RD
Retail: $14.99
Retail: 01/05/2010
Rental: PAR7907485D
Rental: $32.99
Rental: 11/24/2009
Straight-to-DVD title. No corresponding Blu-ray release. 
Retail: PAR7907458RD
Retail: $19.99
Retail: 12/22/2009
The Maiden Heist
(Sony Pictures Home Entertainment)
Rental: COL30915D
Rental: $34.99
Rental: 10/27/2009
Straight-to-DVD title. No corresponding Blu-ray release. Both versions have special features.
Retail: COL30913D
Retail: $16.99
Retail: 11/24/2009

Considering how this pricing and releasing experimentation affects our customers, we’d like to highlight a few points:

Customer Choice
While most customers prefer to obtain the limited-quantity, earlier-released rental version, others may wish to wait and receive the lower-priced retail version.  No matter what route customers go, we offer both retail and rental editions of any title affected by Paramount’s two-tiered model.

Cataloging (MARC) Issue 
Because these titles are different versions, rental and retail editions carry different stock numbers, ISBNs, and OCLC numbers.  For questions regarding cataloging one or both versions, please contact our MARC Records department at 1.800.875.2785.

Limited Availability for Rental Edition
Quantities are limited for Paramount’s rental editions.  Therefore, customers interested in this version need to pre-order titles as early as possible.  After street date, there’s no guarantee that orders placed for rental editions will be filled.

The Difference on Web, Customized Standing Orders, and Catalogs
We will list both versions of any title affected by Paramount’s two-tiered pricing model in our catalogs (see snapshot below), and customers can view both editions on our website.  However, because rental editions hit the market first, our customized standing orders feature this version.

If you have any questions regarding Paramount’s two-tiered pricing model and/or the content of retail and rental editions, please post them here as comments or contact our Customer Service Department at 1.800.875.2785.