Breaking DVD street dates

There’s this place in NYC that consistently has the new DVDs on sale about 12 days before they’re scheduled to go on sale in other stores. This is one of those semi-porn shops that had to change their inventory to mostly non-porn in the '90s due to new zoning laws. The DVDs are not bootlegs; they’re the real deal. I just bought the Hulk DVD there last night. Its street date
is supposed to be Oct. 28.

So is this legal? Is it more a breach of ethics or etiquette than law? Do distributors send the DVDs to other stores this early, expecting that the store will just sit on them for almost two weeks?

This is illegal.

Stores do sit on them.

And now you have to e-mail me and tell me where the store is, so that I can, uh, get to the bottom of all this illegal activity.

It’s not a crime, but it is a violation of the store’s contract with the distributor.

If the distributor finds out, they can do narsty things to the store.

Couldn’t the store conceivably have a contract allowing them to sell the DVDs earlier than other stores?


To do so would violate the whole purpose of having a release date for a DVD/Video/CD and would give that store an unfair advantage.

And I believe in some cities it is a misdemeanor to break street dates.