Tuesday, May 6

The end of an era

Greetings. The following is an announcement I received via email from the Media Access Group regarding the future in described videos. Basically, its short. DVS videos have played a big role in my life personally, and while the end of their video sales was not a surprise given today's technology and where we're going, it is the ending of a significant chapter. I haven't bought a described video from them in a few years, but I still have around 15 of them at my apartment, and another few at my parent's house that I chose not to bring when I moved. If you want to have a piece of history, then read on and perhaps even purchase some of the remaining titles they have. Links are provided where appropriate. Note that the end of sales does not mean the ending of their services. Enjoy.

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


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

DVS in Movie Theaters


Link to Contact List for Hollywood Studios

(please include "Home Entertainment Division" in the address)

Mary Watkins
Media Access Group at WGBH
617 300-3700

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