Thursday, February 7, 2013

Red Queens and Increasing Returns

·         When you decided to obtain a DVD for your science fiction assignment in Module 4, where did you go to find a movie based on a Philip K. Dick book? Did you rent or purchase a DVD, or did you view it digitally on your computer using Netflix or a similar vendor of video-on-demand?
Total Recall is the movie that I viewed for my Module 4 assignment. I viewed this movie using my Netflix account. Initially, I searched YouTube and the results that kept coming up where 2-3 minute snippets from the movie; however, the newer version of Total Recall was available and I actually watched the entire movie on my iPad for free. As for the original Total Recall, I could not find it in the Red Box, so this is another reason why I had to utilize Netflix.
·         Is the current competition between DVDs and video-on-demand (VOD) an example of increasing returns or Red Queens? Justify your response with sound reasoning and specific examples.
DVDs and videos-on-demand are both examples of Red Queens. I say this because Dr. Thornburg (2009) suggests that when two technologies advance around the same time and compete with one another to stay ahead of its competition this is a prime example of Red Queens. However, VOD have emerged and stolen to thunder away from renting movies that are on DVDs. VOD offers the convenience of watching a movie at your leisure without having to worry about acquiring a late fee if you don’t return the movie within a certain amount of time.
·         Where do you think DVDs and video-on-demand are on the four criteria of McLuhan’s tetrad?
As for the criteria for McLuhan’s tetrad DVDs are just about obsolete. Videos on Demand and streaming movies are more convenient than having to return DVDs, and in the world we live in everything is about convenience.


Laureate Education, Inc. (2009). Increasing returns. Emerging and future technology. Baltimore, MD: Author.


  1. Hello Cora,

    It is interesting you found the movie on Netflix for free. Wish I would have thought of that. I actually paid $4 to watch it on video-on-demand. The neat thing about Netflix and Hulu is that you can watch from an iPad.

    I also said they were Red Queens and for the same reasons you did. We actually went and bought a BluRay player because DVDs are almost obsolete.

    1. Actually, Blue ray is almost obsolete. Blue ray should have been an extension of dvds, but lagged to thrive. new technology is coming out invalidating the reign of blue ray.
      I also believe these are increasing returns, because of the technology being different, and belonging to the theory of chaos rather than an even play field.

  2. Hi Cora,

    I downloaded my movie via I didn't think to use Netflix. I like the idea of being able to download movies on my electronic devices at my convenience. I can't remember the last time I've actually gone to the movies. DVDs and video-on-demand are in fierce competition but I believe video-on-demand might have a slight lead on the competition.

  3. I found my movie on YouTube which didn't require me to download and take up any of my memory. YouTube wasn't my first option (I have a Netflix account) but it was the easiest and most convenient. I feel that VOD gaining popularity. In the classroom, I look to vendors such as NetFlix when I want to show a video to my students.

  4. Hi Cora,
    I agree that human nature seems to seek convenience in today's world. I wonder what the patience time factor is on average at a MacDonald's now; it used to be 45 seconds. My lastest frustration seems to be system updates when I am ready to work.
    Thanks for sharing,
    ~Laurie Korte