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Previous Entry Cheap DVDs, Publishers Clearinghouse and you Dec. 30th, 2005 @ 07:46 pm Next Entry
Let's get some info out of the way first: I'm a member of popmusicpopculture, I do a site at sweetposer.tk and this is the first post I've made here.  Thus ends the disclaimer.

I recently received one of those missives from Publishers Clearinghouse telling me I MAY ALREADY BE A MILLIONAIRE.  That Publishers Clearinghouse continues to do this sweepstakes is bad enough.  Publishers Clearinghouse has somehow gradually turned into a J.D. Marvel clone as well (i.e., the company mainly sells items of dubious overall quality.)  The company's not trying to sell vibrators as massaging implements yet, but give Publishers Clearinghouse time.

Apparently Publishers Clearinghouse is courting the home video market.  It has been for some time, I imagine, but I have found at least two instances where the company is selling budget DVDs for more than they're really worth.  I wouldn't buy anything from Publishers Clearinghouse - that just means at least five years of junk mail - but some people would, and I feel sorry for them.


I'm not sure who released this Victory at Sea two-disc set.  Mill Creek Entertainment (a/k/a Treeline and Digital1Stop) might have put this out, but there's a more common three-disc set from Mill Creek floating around.  Victory at Sea seems to be public domain, although the market for 53-year-old documentary series about WWII can't be large or growing.  I imagine overall quality would have to be awful, as it usually is when one crams six hours onto one DVD.


This is a Genius Entertainment release being hawked for $20.  That Publishers Clearinghouse thinks this is worth twenty-four dollars is straining credulity.  The TV Guide Classic Entertainment four-disc sets regularly retail for $10 at discount stores that I've been to, and Genius Entertainment is well-known for its dollar DVDs.  Yes, it's Publishers Clearinghouse and it can charge what it wants for what it sells.  I still can't see 2 discs of PD westerns going for more than $10 - that is, unless you're gullible enough to pay for this.


This isn't strictly "budget DVD" per se, but it sure is bizarre to see Publishers Clearinghouse sell The Code Conspiracy.  The film came out a while ago through The Asylum Home Entertainment, and it's considered to be surprisingly good.  I've seen at least one release from The Asylum (St. John's Wort, original title Otogiriso) enter the realm of budget DVD.  I guess Publishers Clearinghouse wanted something to cash in on The DaVinci Code, but it selling something from a horror label seems incongruous - not that The Code Conspiracy is a horror film, mind you, just that horror is The Asylum's stock in trade.

There were also two VHS releases, both involving sexual techniques and both being sold for over $20.00 at a time when some VHS tapes are selling for $0.99.  I honestly wonder why this company hasn't blipped out of existence yet.  Does Publishers Clearinghouse actually sell magazine subscriptions these days or is it trying to become as low-rent a QVC clone as possible?
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From:foxhack
Date:December 31st, 2005 02:54 am (UTC)
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Technically, those DVDs aren't from Genius Entertainment anymore, I believe. Genius lost the use of some licenses, and I believe TV Guide was one of them.
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From:babypercola
Date:December 31st, 2005 07:19 pm (UTC)
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In this BusinessWire press release and one released ten days later, Genius still listed TV Guide as among its brands, and it hasn't removed the TV Guide references from its website.

If Genius did lose licensing rights to the TV Guide brand, that doesn't seem to be a big deal for the company. Genius did gain The Weinstein Company's favour, so it's not hurting.
From:(Anonymous)
Date:December 31st, 2005 06:29 am (UTC)

Above Dvds

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I found Victory at Sea (3 discs Mill Creek Entainment)in the dump bin at Walmart for $5.50 and "The Code Conspiracy on VHS tape for a $1.00. I plan not order anything from Publishers Clearinghouse too expensive.
Pooch
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From:wildbilltx
Date:December 31st, 2005 09:21 am (UTC)
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The sweepstakes is just a big ad campaign for thier real business - selling magazine subscriptions.

Companies like Publishers Clearinghouse, Harriet Carter and many mail order catalog companies target any gullable person (especally older elderly adults) who dont shop for bargains by selling cheaply made stuff using slick mail advertising.
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From:wildbilltx
Date:December 31st, 2005 09:26 am (UTC)
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Speaking of Harriet Carter, go to thier website http://www.harrietcarter.com and type in DVD.. you will find the same overpriced DVD's Publishers Clearing house is selling.
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From:scottmercer
Date:December 31st, 2005 09:42 am (UTC)

Harriet Carter is a Madwoman

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Okay, checked out that Harriet Carter Shiznit. They're also selling 50 DVD box sets for $20, like Mill Creek/Treeline. War, Mystery and Westerns. But those have the 50 movies on 12 DVDs. These 50 movies are CRAMMED on to only 5 DVDs! Quality must be diabolical. I wonder who's making these? Anyone seen these box sets before?????????
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From:babypercola
Date:December 31st, 2005 06:35 pm (UTC)
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I am well aware of how Publishers Clearinghouse sells itself. I'm just amazed that it's become a less credible operation than it was ten years ago.

Reader's Digest sold overpriced videos and DVDs long before Publishers Clearinghouse got into the act. I have even less respect for Reader's Digest and its sweepstakes than Publishers Clearinghouse's, and that's saying something.
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From:scottmercer
Date:February 11th, 2006 05:58 am (UTC)

The Code Conspiracy

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I found this movie, sealed, at Amoeba Records (Hollywood) for $1.99. Thought I would give it a shot since Sheryl Lee (of Twin Peaks fame) is in it. Definitely low budget, but done with some amount of care. It was worth two bucks.
From:(Anonymous)
Date:April 22nd, 2006 12:21 am (UTC)
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I did not order this and i did not receve this so way sood i pay for it order number is 103208219727 customer ID is 01521009280
From:(Anonymous)
Date:April 26th, 2010 04:19 am (UTC)

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From:(Anonymous)
Date:September 22nd, 2010 01:41 am (UTC)
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I work for Publisher's Clearing House as a customer service rep and it is such a depressing job. I don't know what pisses me off more, seeing the ridiculous prices my employer charges on junk, or talking to the borderline illiterate hicks that are dumb enough to buy said overpriced-junk and then are mad when they get it and it's not top-quality. A shitty company that only dullards buy products from. The dvds pch sells are definitely hilarious, currently we're selling such items as Terrorism: America's Future. I would rate that one up there with Plan 9 from Outer Space on the so bad it's good scale. I got a copy for myself because it just looked so terrible and it did not dissapoint. They have a new series of 2012 prophecy ones which also look pretty heinous. The only good aspect of PCH is that their magazine deals are ridiculously cheap though(12 issue subscriptions for under $4.99). In terms of fooling people into thinking they are winners,all mailers do clearly state that the recipient is simply being offered a chance to enter to win, and the calls I get from people who think their mail is telling them they're already a winner pretty much uniformly emanate from the South, from people who can barely read.
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