Here Come The Bootlegs
Did you know that DVDs sold in the US & Canada can be playable anywhere in the world with a multi-region player? On the same token, did you know that American DVDs can also be used for bootlegs?
Yes, it's true.
At left here are the specifications for a Rugrats In Paris DVD, sold on eBay by someone in Malaysia, and aimed mainly at Australians and Britons. This is suspect because of the following factors:
1. The DVD is "all-region", playable ONLY on "multi-coded / Region 0" players. First of all, Hollywood studios always code their DVDs with a particular region, so they would play only on players coded for that particular region; they are never coded "all-region". The European Uniion doesn't like it, but that's the way it is. Secondly, "all-region" DVDs are usually playable on ALL players, regardless of if they are multi-region, or single-region. For the record, most of Asia are region 3, Australia is region 4, and Britain is region 2.
2. The subtitles are in English, Chinese and Malay. I apologise for sounding a little racist, but most bootleg videos and DVDs are subtitled in Chinese and/or Malay, because the region is where many bootlegs originate. Keep in mind that I'm not saying that ALL videos with such subtitles are bootlegs, as there are legal videos with those subtitles.
3. The DVD is NTSC, which is the color standard used in the US, Canada, most of Latin America and Japan. Malaysia, Australia and Britain use PAL color, though most DVD players support both NTSC and PAL reading, though playback is either in NTSC or PAL only.
4. "Playstation 2 Compatible" -- most DVDs are PS2 compatible, though the consoles lack many functions that conventional DVD players have.
5. Options -- while the DVD has scene selection and subtitles, it lacks most of the other extra functions that the US DVD has.
6. "Asian Released Version" -- as of 5/13/2001, the film is still playing in theaters in Australia and Britian, and won't be theatrically released in Malaysia until 5/24.
For more info on DVD regions, click here.
It's very easy to tell a bootleg apart from the genuine article. Here is a
comparison, comparing a recent (2003) bootleg of Rugrats In Paris,
sold by a Pilipino dealer on eBay,
with the real, Region 1 DVD from my collection.
|Front Cover: Main image truncated at Coco's legs at bottom; pushes widescreen, surround sound and DTS features; tiny Paramount logo in lower right corner.||Front Cover: Entire poster image, touting no special features, other than it being in widescreen. (The real DVD has Dolby surround sound, not DTS.) Has Silver Paramount DVD logo at bottom .|
|Spine: Includes small image of front cover; has DVD logo at bottom; missing Nick Movies and Klasky-Csupo logo; has tiny Paramount logo at bottom.||Spine: Has DVD logo between Chuckie & Tommy; includes Nick Movies and Klasky-Csupo logos; Paramount DVD logo at bottom.|
|Back Cover: As shown above. Glaring notes include a repeat of Roger Ebert's quote; a lack of Sandie Newton's quote; another repeat of the Rugrats In Paris cover; another tiny Paramount logo; no picture of Tommy with camera; no Nick Movies or Klasky-Csupo logos; no classifications or ratings (could've been worse -- another family film, Ice Age, is rated "R"); all-region symbol; Compact Disc logo (despite the fact that DVDs can't play in CD or VCD players); and features listed in black box at center, with the box cutting off the Eiffel Tower picture, right where poor Lil is. Too small to see, but very likely to exist -- misspellings galore, and probably a lack of copyright.||Back Cover: As shown above.|
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