‘Soap’ Compilation Shows Part 2

Hi gang. Just a short posting on this subject again. In the comments section for the last posting on this topic, I said I would try to figure out a way for everybody to see those “best of” shows that have fallen out of circulation.

After wracking my brain for many days now, I keep coming back to the same problem. Just because the copyright owners haven’t distributed these shows doesn’t mean anybody else has a right to make them available in any form.

In the old days I would’ve seriously considered starting some form of the “video circle” where people would send each other VHS dubs of out-of-print movies. While legally hinky, I think most would’ve conceded that so long as no money changed hands and there were no legitimate copies on the market, it fell under fair use, and personal use at that.

Today, unfortunately, to release copyrighted works in digital form “into the wild” in any way, even if you’re just sending it to one other person on disc, makes it too easy for somebody down the line to put it up on a torrent site, and there goes the ball game.

That said, I’m wondering if we shouldn’t start some kind of online campaign to show Sony that there is a market for those lost episodes. If they see enough activity on that front, they may be convinced to make them commercially available.

Thoughts?

 

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11 comments on “‘Soap’ Compilation Shows Part 2

    • In a perfect world, Paul, definitely. But in a climate where they’ve recently tried to regulate the Internet even further in the U.S., it’s not very realistic. At some point we’ll probably reach a happy median between respecting copyrights and allowing fair use of what is essentially our shared culture, but until then I’m afraid this is where we are. Again, it doesn’t seem like asking a great deal for Sony to issue the episodes on DVD the way Warner Bros. has made much of its back catalog available on demand. The cost is minimal, and the paperwork shouldn’t be any more onerous on their end than it is for box sets.

  1. They may not think that releasing them on their own is worth the “trouble”- of which, there looks to be little on paper, but…

    Ideally, they would put them all in one release. Why they weren’t included on the season sets, who knows.

    • I think the rationale must’ve been that since you have the whole season in one box, you don’t really need to see a compilation of the same scenes you’ve already seen. For the first compilation I’d tend to agree, but the wraparound segments for the other two really should be available. Sigh. And around and around we go…

  2. I agree- they probably thought there wasn’t much that people would miss. But, the “Jessica’s Wonderful Life” show had decent wraparound scenes, and, from what you said, the Benson/Jessica “goodbye” episode did as well.

  3. It’s a nice idea, but I’m not sure we’d get much of a reply from Sony. They have a really bad track record of releasing shows either poorly or not entirely, I’m sorry to say.

    That said, I’d be more than happy to JOIN any sort of online campaign (what could it hurt, right) should one be started, and I’d quickly purchase any official release that included these compilations (especially the second one).

  4. Sony is doing manufacturing on demand dvds now. I think this would be a perfect idea for that program. Contact Sony and let them know that the fans are interesting in a MOD release. It’s more likely to be released in this fashion, as these releases are for more obscure titles and these special episodes fit that bill.

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