In its continued struggle to fend off competition from online rival Netflix, Blockbuster may acquire the movie downloading site Movielink, the Wall Street Journal reported today (Thursday), citing unnamed people familiar with the matter. Movielink was developed by the major movie studios (Disney excepted) as a way of providing a legitimate alternative to pirate sites. However, analysts have observed, its high prices and restrictions that prevent downloaded films from being burned on DVDs or watched on television sets have limited the number of users. Blockbuster has reportedly offered $50 million in cash and stock for the service, an indication in itself of Movielink's weak attraction, but the Journal observed that it nevertheless would have "important strategic implications" for Blockbuster -- giving it a way of offering movies to customers in its stores, by online rental, or by downloading.



01/03/2007