As piracy issues plague the movie and TV industry more than ever, Where to Watch is the latest initiative out of Hollywood to fight unlawful media viewing.
While the Internet helps the movie and TV industry get the word out about their content (as well as make money through licensed avenues like Netflix and Hulu) it also provides them with a giant headache. Namely, piracy.
As broadband speeds get faster and people are more in-tune with technology, many people are finding illegal ways to watch the TV shows and movies that they love. Through means of torrenting or streaming, people are circumventing legal avenues of viewership instead of just tuning in or paying for movie tickets.
Throughout the years, Hollywood has gone to great measures to prevent this including DMCA (copyright) notices to take down files and the lobbying of copyright laws that have led to several high profile arrests. None of it has been particularly effective though which is why companies have banded together to launch ‘Where to Watch’.
Where to Watch (helpfully located at WhereToWatch.com) is a search engine that tells you where to watch whichever TV or movie that you’ve typed into it. Free to use, Where to Watch will tell you where to watch that TV show or movie online, with some content sources including Netflix, iTunes and Xbox Video.
Furthermore, when streaming options aren’t available, the site will suggest physical alternatives. For example, it will suggest DVD/Blu-ray purchases or rentals for older content and for new releases it will recommend local show-times if you enter your ZIP code too.
One massive oversight is it doesn’t tell you ‘Where to Watch’ the movie or TV show on your actual television. So if your favourite holiday movie is showing on ABC Family (per their annual 25 Days of Christmas promotion), the Where to Watch site will still direct you to Netflix etc. instead.
Furthermore, Hollywood’s plan is inherently flawed because they clearly don’t understand that people aren’t just pirating because they don’t know where to watch these things, but many people pirate media because they can’t afford it. So directing them to places where you have to pay to watch those things legally isn’t going to solve any problems.
Alas, it is a step towards combatting piracy that isn’t ‘throw everyone in jail’ so perhaps this can be considered as ‘progress’.
Source: Where to Watch
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