DVD Cases: Redux

I’m in the middle of a cross-country move and had to initiate a second round of DVD case reduction—they’re just a huge waste of space. The inlined picture is a few of the cases I had to throw out. I put them in recycling, but who knows what their final fate will be? Interesting to note is that all these cases were acquired in the last 1-2 years, well within the era of broadband internet connections.

The possibility of PADI switching to slim DVD cases spurred some readers to comment. Apparently I’m not the only one frustrated with the excess plastic lying around. Some commenters think scuba agencies should switch to internet distribution, and I tend to agree. Some even pointed out the conflict between all this plastic and PADI’s own Project AWARE. Others point out that apart from any environmental impact, they just take excessive shelf space (thin cases vs. full size doesn’t save that much plastic, after all).

In other areas PADI seems to be opting for digital distribution. New instructor manuals, for instance, can be downloaded in PDF format. The PADI Guide to Teaching also comes with a digital version, in addition to the oversized hardback binder. I think this is great, and in fact never use the hard copies (and most likely never will), instead opting for iPad + PDF.

I wonder if copyright protection has anything to do with the slow adoption rate? It’s easy to duplicate digital files, and selling books / DVDs is a good stream of revenue for most agencies.

Is pure internet distribution in the near or distant future for the major agencies? Would most scuba trainees even prefer this over traditional paper or DVDs? It seems at this point the question isn’t if, but when.

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12 Responses to “DVD Cases: Redux”

  1. Jay Jetty Says:

    I took my IE in July of 2004 and I am here to tell you that the amount of papers I brought home is amazing! If I dropped my instructor manual from my second story window I could be charged with assault if I hit some one! Its a real back breaker!

    My opinion is this. PADI has a bought and paid for supply of DVDs purchased in bulk. And until that time we just have to deal with the 200 pound shelves!

    I love the idea of cutting back on excess, but the flip side of that is I am not young enough to want to curl up with a good e-reader. Give me a book!

    Oh well we all have to compromise!

    Jay Jetty
    scuba diving

  2. Alex Jones Says:

    I completely agree. It would be so much easier and more manageable to just get all of this stuff over the internet. Otherwise it is just a waste of space!

  3. Henry Says:

    I am a web developer and I would not mind them offering the items to watch online whenever you want. They wouldn’t have to distribute it if they didn’t want and the ones who have paid for the classes could get the latest information at no extra charge. Then again, I like that SCUBA has me separated from web tech often.

  4. Ludas Says:

    Thanks for sharing , I agree with you too, It would be so much easier ,many scuba shops sell pricey paint specifically for dive gear. This is just acrylic paint, sometimes called “fabric paint”, that you can find at any hobby / craft store for one-fourth the price.
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    Diving in Tenerife is so cool,water temperature 24 , 26´C ,water is blue and sea life is very rich

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