2012: When You Could No Longer Make the Case For Physical Copies of Skate Videos

What do dinosaurs, the Dodo bird, championship-level basketball in New York, The Wiz stores, VHS tapes, and DVDs all have in common?

Apple was able to slim down the laptop, which will start at $2,200 for a model with a 15.4-inch screen, by eliminating its DVD drive…Apple’s move to drop the DVD drive echoes past moves by the company to drop technologies in its machines, like floppy-disk drives, that it viewed as outmoded, even though some consumers initially grumbled about the changes.The New York Times (June 11, 2012)

Apple’s direction seems like a decent gauge of where technology is heading.

The majority of your favorite independent skate videos are likely edited on MacBooks. Now that Apple is scrapping the DVD drive, hard-copy loyalists (the same sort of people content with spending $1K+ a year on VX1000 repairs…or only listening to music on vinyl) will need to suffer the inconveniences of older technologies to keep the format they grew up with alive. HD did not kill off Mini DV the day it came out, and iTunes skate video downloads did not immediately end DVD production, but this seems pretty close to the end for any future additions to your DVD shelf. Skate videos will get to a point where only legitimate, money-making companies shell out resources on discs to keep the older crowd happy; it is just hard to imagine a shop/independent video going through the hassle of producing something that so few people buy anyway. (Especially if most laptops won’t have a place to insert the disc three years from now.)

Yeah Right! comes to mind as the last major skate video to be released on VHS. It would make sense if the Chocolate video is the last one to come out on a disc. R.I.P. DVDs, you had a good ten-year run. You’ll be missed.

“I organize my past based on skate videos, based on the emotions I got from them, the ideas they gave me. I don’t know what’s going to happen now that videos are online, and there’s so much to choose from. I hope there’s a resurgence of hard, physical, collectable videos.” — Jake Johnson, 2011

That would be great, but it doesn’t look like it is going to happen.


  1. man shut up, you know there are external dvd drives for cheap if you still wanna watch shit on your computer, but its 2k12 who the fuck is even watchin dvds on laptops anymore for real?

  2. The skate industry is slow when it comes to technology (my favourite site uses 6 iframes).

    Most big sites still buy into custom video players so they can serve ads (but they’re paying for the video bandwidth so their profits, if any, are slim at best). Other issues like quality and mobile only compound the problem.

    I’m looking forward to the day when I can purchase a legal DRM-free video and play it on any device I want. That would make me happy. Now I have to break the DRM after I already paid for it!

    If you don’t have apple tv how are you supposed to stream it to your TV or any non-Apple device? Great for Apple, bad for end users.

    Are you guys really watching skate videos huddled around a laptop? Buy a cable or a set top box and chill on the couch like nature intended.

    It takes a day or 2 to setup a shopping cart with a DRM free video. I can’t understand why big skate companies don’t cut out the middle man (Apple) and keep all the money. Or do both!

  3. http://store.apple.com/us/product/MD564

    I get that it’s not built in though. Hoping we keep getting blu-rays of stuff a la Debacle, The Cinematographer Project, The Final Flare, etc. Sadly you’re probably right though about the shift to a post-disc skateboard video landscape. Couldn’t agree with Jake Johnson’s sentiment more.

  4. It’s more from a production standpoint. Whether or not people huddle around laptops is kind of a secondary issue (owning a laptop but no TV if you live by yourself isn’t that uncommon though.)

    If the device you use to create your skate video is getting rid of a means to burn DVDs, that means you’re discouraged from creating them. So, 3 years from now, you’re going to be tracking down an older computer with a DVD drive or buying an external one if you’re hellbent on making one? Not much different than sacrificing lunch for a week in order to fund your VX1 repair.

    With that being said, I bought the Stereo “Visual Sound” / “Tincan Folklore” box set last night.

  5. I’m with Kay up there. iTunes releases don’t cut it… right now I’ve got 4 movies right now that I couldn’t watch if I wanted to because they’re locked onto another computer’s iTunes. Ridiculous. You can do amazing things with .mp4/.mkv (pretty much anything possible on a DVD can be baked into those files) and that where my money should be going.

    Companies make more, and customers get a more useful product.

    And pirates will pirate no matter what… I don’t even consider that angle. Look at the Humble Indie Bundle- they release like 6 games at a time with no DRM and let people pay as much as they want (even as low as 1 cent). They make millions every time. If Girl and other timeless companies with such an awesome back catalogue even did this with a few of their older movies (let people download them directly with paypal/amazon/google checkout in good HD/Source quality)… that’s a revenue that wasn’t even possible or viable with DVD’s (which they stop printing after a year or two anyways).

    I hope companies come to this realization soon. There are alot of vids that I want to have in my personal collection (not on a undependable streaming website with dubious quality) that I would pay good sums for (Super Champion Funzone? All the Crail tour vids?).

  6. Could this be like when apple tried to get rid of firewire? (The technology apple itself brought into standard.)

  7. bronze video – friday june 29th wreck room bk

    sognar, caviar, 56k all on one dvd shortly after

  8. Duke i hope you’re not bullshitting on that flipmode dvd,i’ve been waiting on Caviar to drop since fucking forever. gnarly

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