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DVS Home Video® Sales Effort Comes to a Close

May 6, 2008 • Darrell Shandrow Hilliker

It seems the bad news on the accessibility front just keeps coming this
week.

DVS Home Video® Sales Effort Comes to a Close

Deep Discounts Offered for One Week on Remaining Inventory

Boston, MA. May 6. DVS Home Video, a project begun by Boston public
broadcaster WGBH in the early 90's to make movies on video accessible to the
nation's blind and visually impaired viewers, will end as of May 12. The
Hollywood studios have ceased manufacturing VHS or tape versions of films
for sale and rental.
WGBH's work to make media accessible via description goes on, with efforts
focused on television, feature films in theaters, DVDs and online video.

The DVS Home Video effort, started over a decade ago with funding from the
U.S. Department of Education, resulted in more than 300 videos made
accessible through narration of key visual elements inserted into natural
pauses in dialogue. From the very first DVS Video's debut, the reaction of
the community was immediate and actually profound. Films came alive in a
whole new way, and the eagerness for new titles only grew. Many of the
videos sold over the years were purchased by libraries and schools, which
multiplied the number of individuals and families who took such enjoyment in
described movies.

Films are now being distributed for sale and rental on DVD, BluRay DVD and
through video on demand (either rental or download to own) services via the
Internet. WGBH's Media Access Group, home to the Descriptive Video Service,
has been working to transition the home video efforts to DVD and to these
online movie delivery outlets. Lack of available memory space on DVDs has
been stated as the reason why more description tracks, created for
theatrical release in the over 300 movie theaters with WGBH's Motion Picture
Access® (MoPix®) systems, are not making the migration onto DVDs. WGBH
maintains a list of DVDs that have description tracks on them at the Web
page listed with other description-related links at the bottom of this post.

Advocacy is needed from the community of description fans to make this
transition happen. Please see the link below for a list of Hollywood
studios' home video/home entertainment divisions. Help show the providers
of video on these formats that there is a market and that you would be
willing to purchase movies with a description track included as an optional
feature.

For the next week (until May 12), DVS Home Video titles remaining in stock
will be sold at a deep discount. Videos that previously were available for
$15.01 and above will be sold for $10. Videos retailing for $15 and below
will be now be available for $5.

To access a list of available titles, please visit the Web site

http://main.wgbh.org/wgbh/pages/mag/resources/dvs-home-video-catalogue.html.

To hear a list of titles, and/or to place an order, please call:
317 579-0439 (24 hours a day, 7 days a week)

All of us at the Media Access Group appreciate the unyielding support our
efforts have generated over the years, and we are looking forward to the
next chapter. Here is a list of links to information about ongoing
description work from WGBH:

DVS on Television
http://main.wgbh.org/wgbh/pages/mag/services/description/ontv/

DVS in Movie Theaters
www.mopix.org

DVS on DVD
http://main.wgbh.org/wgbh/pages/mag/resources/accessible-dvds.htm
l

Link to Contact List for Hollywood Studios
http://ncam.wgbh.org/mopix/studios.html
(please include "Home Entertainment Division" in the address)

Contact:
Mary Watkins
Media Access Group at WGBH
617 300-3700
mary_watkins@wgbh.org

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