Monday, September 06, 2004

DVD woes

Starting with a short rant tonight.

What the hell is it with DVD regions? I received a season of the Simpsons a year ago and watched them happily. Then I watched several Korean movies and other movies bought in Korea and now, no more Simpsons. How did I learn about this? For my birthday, a short time ago, I scored the full trilogy of Lord of the Rings movies - 10 or more hours of viewing pleasure. I don't know how long the 3 movies would be because I can't play them.

I looked at software fixes but none seemed to work. Maybe they would have if I'd used them before the player locked into one region.

We may someday look at a region-free DVD player but it's not worth getting any DVD player for our 20 inch TV. I decided to get a peripheral DVD r/w player for my computer. My computer was bought just a month or two before the read/write option became standard so I am hoping the new drive will be useful for more than just region 1 movies.

My wife is Korean and I guess that if and when we move to Canada, she will occasionally receive DVD from home so this DVD regions problem doesn't look like it will go away soon.

I don't really think many people will read this but if you do, I have a question: Was I the only one to not know about this? The only one to be upset by it?

- Oh, you can tell this is a rant because I used the word, 'Hell'.

I have another complaint, while I'm talking about computers and such. I am an English speaker living in Korea. For some reason, Air Canada sends me information on flights from Toronto to Florida and Korean Air sends me news about deals on flights to Korea. I have a Hewlett Packard printer and get monthly emails from them... in Korean. When I registered with them... well, I forget what I did for sure, but I know I would have looked for language options. I think they sell HP Printers in English speaking countries.

Is it impossible for multinational companies to tailor their PR emails to their clients? I am sure that English speakers in Korea are a minority but almost all of us use Korean Air. You can't drive or take the train and who travels by boat these days? And does Air Canada not think that people will use them to fly TO Canada?

I like Korea. Really. And I can accept problems due to language barriers with people on the street. It's my responsibility to learn Korean, not theirs to learn English if I plan to stay for any length of time.

Still, I thought a problem that globalization was to fix is matching the customer's language with the product's information.

I've had this blog for a few months now but I had just signed up out of curiosity. I posted my first blog a few days ago. One person found my blog and commented so I guess someone might see it after all. If you do and have suggestions, I'm open to them.


Anonymous said...

Well, that one person (or at least the 1st commentator) is back !

DVD regions inevitably come into the limelight of conversation if you live outside of Korean but are surrounded by fans of Korean drama/movies. So that was how I found out the new meaning of "regions".

Apparently, DVD players can be 'cracked' so that it becomes as good as region-free. Hope you know of a friendly and competent technician.

BTW, I have 2 Yahoo accounts, one which I use for my blog and the other for other purposes. Guess what ? My other account ends up with a Korean interface without any configuration on my part while the email and other functions behind my Korean blog ID turned into English !

Anonymous said...

I just bought a pioneer codefree DVD player at LGEShop two months ago for about 230,000 It plays NA and Korean movies flawlessly. As well, it's dual voltage!

On other things, Kyungdong University has a good Language program if you have the time--20hours a week in the mornings. There's also the KLPT test on October 31st at Kyungdong--it's only 30,000won, but it shows you where you're really at in Korean, and it's a whole lot cheaper than driving to Seoul . . .

Anonymous said...

We have the same problem with our DVDs. My husband and I are Americans living in Seoul. We watch our DVDs on our computers, so we bought a program called "DVD Region Free". It tells the DVD player to ignore the region code on the DVD. I've been able to play DVDs from the US and Korea with no problems, but I think it will only work with computers.

Hope you find a solution to your problem!