Amazon started offering downloadable movies a couple of weeks ago. That’s great, especially since they offer rentals. I prefer to rent movies since I usually only see a movie once. If I feel like watching it again and again, I would buy it. In that case, I wouldn’t buy a restricted downloadable file and wouldn’t recommend it either, especially with draconian agreements. I’d rather just buy the physical DVD at an affordable price. You can’t just give a restricted file to a friend and say, “Hey, check this out. It’s cool”. The same is true for restricted music.

The hassle of maintaining my own digital store and backing up stuff is another deterrent. Hard disks will fail, so one needs a more comprehensive backup policy than just saving the data onto a second disk. With movies, that’s a lot of data. There’s no way I’m going to put money into a backup system for that. Amazon’s videos won’t play on the Mac, so I can’t even rent it if I wanted to. That’s another side-effect of the restrictions. Apple is also offering movie downloads through their iTunes store, but they don’t offer rentals. So, I’m off to Movie Madness these days. If someone figures out a convenient way to offer downloadable movie rentals, I’ll sign on.