AfterDawn: Tech news

Self-destructing DVDs for the holiday season

Written by Jari Ketola @ 24 Oct 2004 15:31 User comments (23)

Self-destructing DVDs for the holiday season What better way to celebrate the holiday season than by littering your neighborhood with disposable DVDs! At least that's what Atlanta company Convex Group seems to have in mind. They will be releasing a low-budget movie Noel simultaneously on disposable DVD and in cinema,
The 48-hour self-destructing FlexPlay DVDs will be available at on November 17th at $4.99.

FlexPlay, which was bought by Convex in September, has provided it's EZ-D technology to other companies as well, such as Walt Disney, Co., who has run limited trials on FlexPlay discs for over a year now.

While Disney's trials have been a sort of a substitute for rentals, Convex has a different approach. The movie, Noel, is a low-budget film that will open in only 10 cities around the US. Those who want to see the movie, but can't find it in their city, can purchase the movie from Amazon on a FlexPlay disc, and watch it at home. If they like it, they may even buy the fully featured DVD once it's released.

More information on the movie and FlexPlay is available on the product page at


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23 user comments

124.10.2004 16:01

j---s f-----g c----t...i can't believe wonder why the world is full of the trash it is...what greedy b-------s! Tsk, tsk, tsk. I agree with you, Auslander, but ..... Tsk, tsk, tsk. [Wagging finger.] -- A_Klingon --

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 24 Oct 2004 @ 17:39

224.10.2004 16:20

can u copy these flex play dvd's?

324.10.2004 16:29

i'm gonna guess they melt under the laser or something. somehow, i'm sure they threw a wrench into those works.

424.10.2004 17:56

Can U copy these flexplay dvds?
I don't see why not, MXGzX. At least I've never heard anybody say they couldn't be ripped and processed and burned with any standard software you'll find all over the 'Net. I've tried to locally find a flex-play disc (*any* flex-play disc, Disney or otherwise), but have been unsuccessful. But it seems to me that if: a) It's playable in any standard DVD player, Then: b) It's perfectly copy-able. Question is - at $4.99 US, would you want to? If the disc is a limited edition or a sort of collector's item, then maybe. If it's just a rehash of what you can already find in a video rental store, then why bother? You can rent the (normal) disc more cheaply. Flex-play discs are to my mind, just a marketing gimmick. I can't really say I've heard of Disney's flexplay thingees catching on in any big way. 'Course, I'd love to say I copied one just for the hell of it. Any form of DRM gives me a rash. If you do try to rip one, though, do it just as soon as you crack open the blister-pack so you won't get stuck with a $5 coaster. And save the packaging (artwork) for your permanent flexplay video collection. (I love beating these morons at their own game.) -- A_K --
This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 25 Oct 2004 @ 23:21

524.10.2004 23:00

Ridiculous....Might have a chance if the price was 99 cents but 4.99 is out of the question.

625.10.2004 0:15

This is such a waste, a step backward. Why make physical copies that end up in a landfill when nearly everyone has access to the internet? Incidentally, I complained to Disney about their self-destructing DVD's, and all they could say was that they would put in place a helpful recycling program. I guess the concept of never using the energy or wasting the resources to produce the things in the first place doesn't really matter to them. The internet is made for distribution of digital information, why are these companies being so backward?

725.10.2004 5:51

Yay! Now I can finally pay for stuff that will be garbage within days of purchase. Im so excited!

825.10.2004 8:24

Making The Best Of A Silly Situation: ** Build (or find) a nice little wooden or plastic storage case that holds the Convex Group's flexplay discs nicely in their original packaging. ** Make a 100% perfectly identical backup with the software of your choice. (I can do it with my eyes closed). ** Mail the expired, dead discs back to...... to....Disney! HA! What a hoot! Send the Convex discs back to Disney's recycling address. That should drive home a message about superflous landfill concerns. There's not a _thing_ Disney can do but accept them. (Don't include a return address). :-) ** Store your backed-up discs with the original artwork card, in the neat little storage box you made/obtained. ** Enjoy your 'flexplay' movies for 48 years, not 48 hours. I can't believe it..... I found blank dvd-r's locally for .50c Canadian!. That's cheaper than blank cd-r's !!

925.10.2004 11:14

Disposable disks, brilliant idea that, after 4 hours they vanish b4 your very eyes. Brilliant a bit like my wages before the goverment get there greedy hands on it...Walt Disney know what to be upto next.

1025.10.2004 12:14

E-z-explosion DVDs. Great, another tool for terrorists.

1125.10.2004 13:33

This is the pre cursor to pay per view (or at least the next Divx DVD scam), the DVD turns Opaque and you throw it away then have to buy another one if you want to see it again. It's just another marketing strategy to get more money out of our pockets! I will not purchase such crap, if you do you are supporting their scam. Starcruiser

1225.10.2004 15:21

do they shatter in a disc drive if they can not be read?

1325.10.2004 15:23

easy-d easy-e sounds like a rapper's name to me

1426.10.2004 7:15

What about legality in copying the DVDs? You bought the disc, so you should be able to do whatever you want with it (private use). But since these discs are kind of the same thing as renting a movie, copying should be prohibited - right?

1526.10.2004 11:48

This idea should be canned. Or exploded, if you like.

Everyone is entitled to their own true opinion. Either respect that or don't.

1626.10.2004 11:49

Holy shit I just realised I agreed to myself. *embrassed look*

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 27 Oct 2004 @ 12:16

Everyone is entitled to their own true opinion. Either respect that or don't.

1726.10.2004 12:59

The only things worth buying that destroy themselves are bombs.

1826.10.2004 13:35

I think the next disposable dvd in line is the disappearing dvd that plays one time and is mysterious gone from your drive. "Where did it go?" It would just vanish like the laser ate it. that would be a good marketing strategy, at least the land fill wouldn't get full. Oh well, definitely not worth the waste of $5 in my mind. I guess this is one more way for our capitalistic society to fill up the giant holes in the ground we call landfills. And some corporate guy sitting in the board room coming up with ideas to make more money for the company can keep his $150,000 salary every year for creating such a stupid idea. gimpie

1927.10.2004 4:41

The only things worth buying that destroy themselves are bombs.
Well, I think that's the case here, Nephilim. The whole Flexdisc idea is, for all intents and purposes, a bomb anyway. Don't forget, Convex is talking about 'B' movies here. You know, the kind of "stuff" you watch when you're bored out of your mind and need something to put you to sleep. I think flexplay discs are wonderful, just wonderful. ** Wonderful to defeat. (DRM) ** Wonderful to share with your friends. ** Wonderful as collector's items. (Once gone, you'll never see them again). ** Wonderful to get free artwork with them without having to search the web for cover photos. ** They'll be deader than Circuit City's original Divx soon, and as such, will make for interesting conversation pieces in years to come. Ghostdog - copying these things, legitimately or otherwise, is a grey area to my mind. I'm sure if you think hard enough, you'll come up with all sorts of legit reasons to copy them. Who's gonna hire a lawyer to argue with you? How they gonna find out? Who gives a s---, anyway ??? You sign no contract when you pick up these little komakazie discs; you do not have to check any "[ ]-I agree" boxes when you plunks down yer cash. "Frankly Dahling, I don't give a damn". [quote from some movie-or-other]. I hope someone can find (and report back to us) any luck they may have had in copying these overpriced things. (Either Disney or Convex). I've been waiting a year, but have still not heard from anyone on this. Flexplay discs are a technological curiosity, that's all. I wouldn't invest in any flexplay stocks at this point. Party On Wayne!....
This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 27 Oct 2004 @ 4:47

2025.11.2004 13:13

Copied very nicely. Useing DVD Shrink, and Nero 6 reloaded. I live in VA, and there was a special offer on the disk, 102 Dalmations. I didn't really care about the movie myself but the price was only $1.99 and had all the cover art. What a deal and my kids are happy. Thank you MR. Shrink, thank you MR. Disney $3.00 total DVD-R, and disk purchase. Keep them coming. You Dumb Asses. Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha. Man keep them coming and I'll stop my BB acount.

2129.11.2004 8:13

ROTFLMAO !! Excellent comeback, bmkarnes! (And I like your attitude too!. I simply _love_ to read success stories like this. Isn't it amazing? Despite all these built-in DRM measures that the Flexplay inventors actively tout to prospective clients, (movie companies), notice how they "conveniently" neglect to make the merest mention that Average Joe can make perfect copies with his eyes closed? And burn them to .50c blanks to boot !! (I just picked up 100 discs for $50 Canadian, which is something like, $40 American in VA. Right now, blank dvds are the same price if not cheaper than blank cdr-s. I always suspected one could simply run off copies of these things, but you are the first to confirm. (Thank you). Notice too, how little you had to pay for 102 Dalmations. That tells me that Flexplay discs aren't nearly as popular as the suppliers would like people to believe. HA! The truth comes out! Thank you kindly for the update, Mr. Karnes! :-)

2229.11.2004 8:43

Well the way I see it if they change the copy protection what is everyone going to do, run out and buy new DVD player. Not me, I haven't tried any more since, it was just test, to be prepared. Then again I remember the Divx at home pay per view system that didn't have a chance in hell and Flexplay what a joke.

2330.11.2004 1:15

(Howdy). It's virtually guaranteed that the Hollywood powers-that-be will never, never deviate very far, if at all from the dvd standard as it now exists because they are presently engulfed in the largest Cash Cow of their entire overhyped existence - in other words, they are making money faster off DVD sales & rentals than their bean-counters know how to punch the buttons on their calculators. Reminds me of that movie "Casino" (Robert DeNiro; Joe Pesci) where mountains of CASH are being stacked in the back room for the thugs back home. Hollywood can no more stop making (standard) dvd movies than bunny rabbits can stop multiplying. There used to be two guarantees in life: Death and Taxes. Now there is a third: DVD Movies. If Hollywood tried to screw around with anti-copying measures, creating difficulties for the massive worldwide installed user-base of standard dvd players, it would cause a Temporal Rift in their profits faster than a Black Hole in outer space. They would see their windfall sucked out faster than a Hoover slurps up dust balls. So, while they allow themselves to be occassionally courted (wooed) by upstart entrepreneurs like the self-defeating FlexPlay people, you and I have nothing to worry about. And yes -- that's a good comparison -- Flexplay and the (orig) Circuit-City Divx. Both flops. Like Divx, Flexplay is headed for the recycle bin and I'm not talking about the send-in return mailers you can get to send the expired duds back to a central disposal facility. I'm not at all surprised I can't find any flexplays in my area. Nobody wants 'em. We already have scads of stuff falling off the shelves in the local (regular) video rental stores. HA ! I could go on.......... :-)

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 30 Nov 2004 @ 1:17

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