Chinese Pirates Break into Blu-Ray Market

Illustration: Lou Beach
Those Chinese pirates are quite resourceful fellows, as they are now copying Blu-Ray movies onto regular DVD discs thanks to the AVC HD video format.

The pirated movies can only run up to 720p resolution, as opposed to the 1080p resolution true Blu-Ray discs offer, and are also missing a number of the special features, which cannot fit on a DVD disc due to size constraints. But the movies come packaged in the signature blue case of a Blu-Ray disc with fake cover art, even replicating holograms to pass off as the real deal. In China last month, authorities uncovered a pirating operation in which 800 pirated discs were found of popular Blu-Ray movies.

Let this be a warning going into the holiday season. If you are looking for cheap Blu-Ray deals online, make sure that you shop through a reliable store. If you see a deal that seems too good to be true, it probably is. The pirated Blu-Ray discs have been reported to be sold as cheap as $7. But you get what you pay for, and in this case it's an incomplete Blu-Ray disc. Even if the pirated discs weren't illegal (which they are, so that should be enough reason not to buy them) the discs are missing many of the bonus features and higher HD resolution that would make you want the Blu-Ray disc in the first place. It may cost a little more, but at least you get the full product when you stay clear of pirates.

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