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“Historic Blockbuster Store” Offers Glimpse of How Movies Were Rented in the Past (Video)

"Historic Blockbuster Store" Offers Glimpse of How Movies Were Rented in the Past (Video)

Some hump day humor, courtesy of The Onion.

Watching this (and laughing my arse off) I remembered reading about Netflix offering itself for sale to Blockbuster multiple times in the early 2000s (not exactly all that long ago), for $50 million, and Blockbuster management (also the largest video rental chain at the time, and for many years prior), seemingly lacking the vision to see where the home video industry was heading, turned their noses up at the idea.

How quickly fortunes change. A mere 10 years later (actually it took less than that), Blockbuster filed for bankruptcy and shut down all of its operating stores nationwide; while Netflix flourished and continues to do so – an understatement, as the company is now valued at around $46 billion! I’m sure if Blockbuster brass could’ve peeked into the future back in the early 2000s, and been able to see that their then $50 million investment to buy Netflix would be worth $46 billion just over a decade later, they most certainly would’ve made the deal. 

Alas, hindsight is, as they say, 20/20. 

Granted, at the time, Netflix was still a DVD-by-mail company, and didn’t have their streaming service yet, so maybe Blockbuster management didn’t believe that the business, as it was then, was worth $50 million. But, in the end, Netflix still ended up beating them to the punch when it came to streaming, emphasizing, again, their lack of vision in what was, at the time, a rapidly changing world that directly affected how consumers consumed their entertainment. By the time Blockbuster came around to building its own streaming service, Netflix had already established itself, and had been embraced by millions, leaving Blockbuster at a major disadvantage in having to play catch-up, which they ultimately never did.

How will we be consuming our movie and TV content in another 10 to 20 years? Maybe this virtual reality thing that major media companies are investing heavily in today will have a definite say on what comes next. Your guess is as good as mine; but I’m sure companies that are in the movie and TV content distribution/exhibition space are already considering what lies ahead, in order to stay ahead of the curve, and not get left behind like Blockbuster was a decade ago.

Watch (and weep):

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