There’s a pecking order when it comes to movies around our house. A very few are worth seeing in a theater, some are definitely rentals, some are worth buying the DVD (or buying a copy on iTunes) and a very few are worth shelling out for a Blu-Ray copy, in which case I always opt for the combo packs that combine Blu-Ray, a DVD and digital copy. Blu-Ray for the full experience, the DVD we usually give away to a friend, and the digital copy goes in the iTunes library. Nowhere in this equation does 3D enter into the calculation, mind you. But what happens when you buy the combo pack and lose the code for the digital media copy?
If this sounds like an unlikely scenario, then you don’t have kids. Or you’re more organized than I am, and the first thing you do is open the blue tinted plastic box, remove the paper insert with the digital unlock code and either put it somewhere safe or immediately download the digital copy. Or maybe you just BitTorrent the movie, in which case you probably think this whole issue is completely inane. Anyway, what happens when you lose that unlock code? I recently bought the combo pack for Thor and, the day after we watched the Blu-Ray version of the movie, I grabbed the disc with the digital copy to transfer the movie into iTunes only to discover that the insert was gone. The boys had been examining the movie case, but naturally no-one had seen the insert with the code. No luck on a search of the family room.
Obviously, I’m not the only one who’s had some issues here because, as it turns out, studios have websites you can turn to for help. I filled out the form on Paramount’s website, submitted it and the next day they sent a replacement digital code. Problem solved. If you’ve misplaced the digital code on any of your combo packs, here’s the contact info for some of the major studios. And if I could put forth a suggestion to the studios, I suspect this would happen a lot less if that digital code were actually printed on one of the discs, or embossed on the package or printed inside the cover —anything but on a paper insert resembling advertising that slips out when you open the box.