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Home :: Archive :: 2002 :: January ::
Re: BBC Shakespeare
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 13.0163  Thursday, 24 January 2002

[1]     From:   William Proctor Williams <
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        Date:   Wednesday, 23 Jan 2002 11:26:42 -0500
        Subj:   Re: SHK 13.0132 BBC Shakespeare (The Ugly)

[2]     From:   Mary Jane Miller <
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        Date:   Wednesday, 23 Jan 2002 11:28:47 -0500
        Subj:   Re: SHK 13.0132 BBC Shakespeare (The Ugly)

[3]     From:   John E. Perry <
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        Date:   Wednesday, 23 Jan 2002 23:10:10 -0500
        Subj:   Re: SHK 13.0150 Re: BBC Series


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           William Proctor Williams <
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Date:           Wednesday, 23 Jan 2002 11:26:42 -0500
Subject: 13.0132 BBC Shakespeare (The Ugly)
Comment:        Re: SHK 13.0132 BBC Shakespeare (The Ugly)

Tanya Gough writes,

"Apparently the recent announcement of the BBC Shakespeare videos has
caused a problem with Ambrose Video, the supplier, who are having
trouble with their institutional customers as a result of the recent
drop in price.  Perhaps I was not clear in explaining that the tapes we
are selling were destined for individual purchase, and not for schools
and universities.

At any rate, Ambrose has currently discontinued their relationship with
us, not wanting to risk losing any more of their institutional
customers. As a result, Poor Yorick will be able to fulfill all of the
orders we have already received, but we will not be able to accept
further orders at all."

Well, it was fun while it lasted.  I am not a great one for protests or
boycotts but this, it seems to me, is such a case.  I have long thought
that something drastic should be done to Films for the Humanities
because of the ridiculous prices they charge, but now Ambrose Video
makes them almost look, shall I say, humane.  First, can Ambrose still
have much of an institutional market?  I would think that most
institutions which wanted them would have bought them by now.  Second,
should Ambrose be allowed to sell those videos at the vastly inflated
prices they charge to institutions?  This is a classic case of "what the
market will bear," and given the state of library and humanities funding
generally just now, I don't think the market can or should bear it.  It
really makes one wonder if the business spirit which brought us the
ENRON and K-Mart shows also lives at Ambrise Video.  Here is a company
which is probably not going to sell many more of the BBC Shakespeare to
institutions and it is suddenly offered a new, probably large (judging
from the emails on this list), private market and they kill it.  Someone
at corporate headquarters seems to have badly lost the plot!  So they
are cheaper to individuals than they are to universities, so what?  That
is the way the video market works.  Very few people buy something when
it is first released on video, though businesses and institutions do,
then it is offered at lower prices to individuals and one day you see it
for $5.00 at Target or 

 

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