2008: The year of mudslinging

2008: The year of mudslinging

Format War 2007This week is exciting for two reasons: the upcoming Iowa caucuses and CES. This whole year seems to be dedicated to politicians battling it out for the most desirable address, spokesmen battling it out over high-def media, and fanboys battling each other because … well, I don’t know why they battle.

It seems as if the mudslinging has already started. Mike Dunn of Fox has been quoted by Home Media Magazine as saying, “Some of the blowout pricing seen by the other format appears to have been counterproductive, as software sales showed no dramatic increase.” With a bit more teeth he added, “Blu-ray is ‘future proof’ technology with the capacity to grow and evolve, rather than the one that faces near-term obsolescence.”

Craig Kornblau from Universal Studios must not have got the “mudslinging” memo as he said, “The HD DVD companies continue to stand behind our value proposition, which offers consumers a compelling and consistent high-def experience at the most affordable price.”

Meanwhile, New Line and parent company Warner Brothers have nearly identical points. Steve Einhorn of New Line claimed, “Dueling formats have restrained our ability to launch large-scale, industry wide marketing initiatives” and Warner’s Ron Sanders said, “Unfortunately, the dueling formats created an information logjam in what should have been our conversation with consumers.”

Hmm, perhaps it’s only Fox doing the mudslinging. I’m sure Hillary can get in on that. However, Warner’s position does seem a little different than it has previously been. They’ve been very vocal about how both formats are great and now they seem a little put off by the war. If I was paying close attention, it seems a lot like the way Paramount was speaking weeks before they dropped Blu-ray. I don’t want to make any claims or add anything to any rumors, just making an observation.

About Steven Kippel

Steven Kippel has worked as a systems designer for a leading high-end audio/video custom integrator in Southern California since 2003. He is responsible for researching new technologies and integrating them into existing systems and new construction projects. He has designed several high-profile systems for discriminating clients on the cutting-edge of technology. When he is not hard at work, Steven is spending time with his wife, playing with his band or promoting concerts and bands in the Inland Empire. His favorite bands include The Cure, U2, Eisley, Living Sacrifice and DragonForce.

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3 Comments on “2008: The year of mudslinging”

  1. The North American HD DVD Promotional Group’s people have been a lot better about the mudslinging in the last couple of months, while the Blu-ray execs have kept on running their mouths. In contrast, the European HD DVD team is more likely to engage in a tit-for-tat.

    I’m sure there’ll be plenty of mud next week, though. Shows have a way of bring out the “best” from everybody.

  2. Hmmm, strange comments from Warner and New Line indeed. It seems like they are setting themselves up for dropping one of the formats. Definitely a reversal of the previous stance of “look how great we are for supporting both formats and selling the most high def discs”.

  3. It looks like WB made a commitment to BD.. That would be the 2nd prediction to come true in the same no. of days. Good work!

    Leaving only Paramount (but not DreamWorks) and Universal supporting HD exclusively.

    We might be one step further to the end of the format war and thousands of people wondering whether even a $199 HD DVD Player might have been a poor investment..

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