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peter

Never heard of them...yes, do let us know what they're all about... section,price, etc.

Cheers

peter

Just had a thought...since the Pres., has had communication w/ u already, u may have to consider the possibility that ur'll get preferential treatment.

Cynical?...me?..why am I so mistrustful of businesses?...maybe there's a self-help book on learning to love & trust companies, eh?

type-cast

Peter, just watch Fox News. Corporations and Republicans can do no wrong. Enron is not an important story. Monica Lewinsky is.

Impeach Bush. Ban Fox News. Leave Vietnam, I mean Iraq. Stop giving tax cuts to the rich.

bobmane

Yes, SmartFlix is a company run by a man who scourers the web looking for how-to titles from small companies (who cant afford to sue him) then he posts the movies on his site at the outrage of the movie owners-based on his wild interpretations of fair use. He is so lazy he even steals the text and graphics right off the content owner’s sites with cut and paste.

There are many great how-to titles from bigger companies which do not appear on his site because he is too much of a coward to try playing with the big boys. Regardless, many of the titles on his site are there against the owners wishes- as he regularly has to fend of irate content owners makes him quite a looser in general and a purveyor of bad will. He even has a special section on his site where he threatens his visitors- dude is a bottom feeder.

RavenX99

bobmane, can you give references to back up your accusations? Seems like if he's doing something illegal, you'd be glad to point to some evidence.

I've used smartflix recently and had a good experience. The disc shipped the day after I placed my order and was in very good condition. It comes in a heavy cardboard mailer which is designed for reuse... a postage-paid return address label is enclosed. Discs won't always ship so quickly, since they have limited quantities and high demand for some of them.

Their prices are flat-rate... $10 a disc per week, which includes postage both ways. (Discounts on multi-disc sets rented all at once.)

This works great for me... the 4-disc set I'm renting for $40 costs $180. There's just no way I'd be paying $180 for a set of how-to videos.

RavenX99

Okay, I found a discussion with the owner of Smartflix on the forum of one of the sites of a video series he rents (a video magazine on DVD). Bottom line... what he's doing is very specifically allowed by law. Sure, he has to fend off irate content owners... but that doesn't mean that the content owners have a legal leg to stand on. Seems to me, Smartflix has done their legal research and the content owners haven't.

http://luminous-landscape.com/forum/index.php?act=Print&client=printer&f=13&t=12476

slybadheart

I personally enjoy the service that they offer and frequently rent videos from them. Don't be mad at them becuase of they have a business that makes money and is building up with more videos.
Personally I want to Thank You for stiring it up over them. What a great advertisement for them.
One last thing I would spend more time over at smartflix than a blog with banner ads that is trying to make money on click throughs.

tedder

I'm actually trying out my first rental from SmartFlix right now.

First, they use heavy-duty cardboard mailers to send the product. I'm sure that helps cut down on breakage.

Second, the DVD itself was very abused. It is playing okay, but is the most hazed/scratched DVD I've seen that actually plays. It may not play in my other DVD player- I'll try.

Third, I don't think their pricing and model is anything terribly astounding. $10 for a one-week usage of a $40 DVD isn't much of a bargain, really. Following the itunes pricing model (everything sells for the same price, whether it is worth that, worth much less, or worth far more) has its drawbacks. Keep in mind they rent for a one-week period, not indefinite like the NetFlix model.

Their selection is fair. Some of the selections are very poor DVDs- just read the reviews and see how many complaints there are. I suspect well over 50% of the reviews are one-star. That's good- at least I know what to avoid, given the one-price-fits-all model.

So.. I've rented and will rent from them again. They fill a niche.

Artemis

I have tried them; long delay in sending anything out (maybe they only have one copy?), then got the wrong DVD, then got one so damaged I couldn't play much of it. Won't be using them again.

Tradaction

I have tried SmartFlix, and my experience is very disappointing. A few days after I registered on the Web site, I started receiving about 75 spams per day. I have asked them if they had anything to do with that, and I never got an answer from them, so not even a denial. They got money from selling my email address, but they won't get money any more from renting me DVDs.

William W. Holcomb

I have been using Smartflix for about a year now and I absolutely love it! For about $10 each disc you have access to thousands of titles - many of which cost hundreds of dollars each!

Most of the DVDs I have rented were titles that I had a strong interest in viewing but could have never afforded to purchase them. With Smartflix, that's a thing of the past!

Shipping is quick and customer service is good. I do wish they had telephone access (they only use email) but I understand the need to keep costs low. And if you ever find a title they do not have, you can always suggest they purchase the title. I've done so twice and each time they quickly purchased the title for me to rent!!

Exceptional service! A+++

Alex

I do not recommend them. I rented a DVD from them and returned it five days later, they claimed the did not received it and charged me 29.95 for it. It was returned in the envelope they provided. I'm out $40.00 and don't even have the DVD. I would not use them.

Alex

I do not recommend them. I rented a DVD from them and returned it five days later, they claimed the did not received it and charged me 29.95 for it. It was returned in the envelope they provided. I'm out $40.00 and don't even have the DVD. I would not use them.

LS MOrgan

I rented from Netflix. It was a 2 DVD set and the 2nd DVD was out on rental. I had to wait a very long time for it and when it arrived yesterday, it was cracked. I'm sending it back and hoping that there won't be any troubles, but as far as the service itself goes, I've enjoyed it and will likely use them again.

I'm pretty patient but for people who are NOWNOWNOW oriented, I would suggest that they make sure that their selection is in stock before renting.

I will post an update, as far as how they resolve the broken DVD issue.

LS MOrgan

OOPS!
I said "rented from Netflix" meant to say "Smartflix".

Dan

I have rented from smartflix many times. It is legal and actually the smae principal as others like netflix. So long as they buy from the source they can rent them out. Smartflix is a bit pricey but worth it to rent over buying considering most dvds are well over 30 bucks depending on what you rent.

So for those saying they are bottom feeders well its like saying netflix and blockbuster are also bottom feeders, which I disagree with.

Bob

I tried renting from them. They charged my card and then told me that the DVD was not in stock but should be soon. A week later, nothing. They still had my money and I still had no rental. Tried to email. No response. No phone number on website but there was one on my credit card statement. I called them and they said they would refund my money. I'll let you know.

ridgewood44

Check another pretty cool instructional dvd website, www.LearnToVideoRental.com, they are much cheaper than other rental stores. Every month a category goes on special and they can be rented for a fraction of the fee.

Nicholas Pellegrino

Smartflix is operating illegally.

I own asileFX and they have several of my training products available for rent. I have not approved rentals or made any money from them. I have contacted them several times with no response.

Please DO NOT SUPPORT SMARTFLIX

Thank you,
Nicholas Pellegrino
President
AsileFX.net

D

I have rented 3 DVD's from smartflix. The first came broken in half, the replacement sent 4 weeks later was unplayable in several spots. Two more did not have the content that was advertised. Now they have charged my account 3 times for something I never ordered and have no idea why. It took 4 emails to them before they ever responded to my first problem. I have never found a telephone number for them and they do not display any on their website.

Uncamitch

I rented a few vids from this company, may seem pricey but if you were to buy some of these it'll clean your account out... I own some of these videos and paid $180 us for a set of 3 so renting for $9 each is cheap....
I will continue to rent from them because their service is great, pricing is good, selection is great.....

Matt

Nicholas Pellegrino said: "Smartflix is operating illegally. I own asileFX and they have several of my training products available for rent. I have not approved rentals or made any money from them."

You sir, could not be more wrong. They have every legal right to rent your videos and not pay you a dime. Furthermore, you did make money on them: You sold them, didn't you?

Jon

Matt, you could not be more wrong. :)

I really like the idea of SmartFlix' renting model, but the fact is that there are different laws and pricing schemes for content purchased for private ownership and that which is purchased to be rented or loaned out.

Blockbuster, Netflix, Redbox, etc. all have to pay MUCH higher rates for each disc than the Walmart/Costco price you would pay to buy it.

If you put many rented DVDs in your computer you'll see that the title of the DVD often includes "Rental". Now go buy the same DVD from a retail outlet and you'll find that the title is different.

If this guy is buying the private ownership format DVDs and then renting them out he is in violation of US copyright law. He MUST have specific agreements in place with the copyright owner before renting out that content, and I know of no copyright owner who gives that away for retail rates.


- Jon
(Professional Photographer; copyright is a big deal to me.)

TB

Do not support Smartflix. Yes it may be legal to do what they are doing because of a loophole created by the big video rental outlet stores, but it is not ethical and hurts the small business. Movies you rent from the video store make their initial money from sales at the theaters, posters, and other merchandise. The rental money they get is only icing on the cake. Artists don’t have big theaters with millions of people going to see their demonstrations, and they don’t have big stores like Best Buy selling their DVDs. The artist deserves every penny they get from their videos, and Smartflix is taking money from these artists. Some artists may stop making videos because it is not cost effective for them when Smartfix rents out their videos for around $10, and the artist doesn’t see any of that money. Please don’t support Smartflix. Support the artist. These artists don’t get paid like movie stars. Thank you for listening.

Dan

Jon- You could not be more wrong. :)

As a video content owner myself and not a photographer, I can tell you that you are very wrong when it comes to Netflix's pricing model.

The fact is that renting movies is still considered to be private viewing. I have also personally sold videos to Netflix and they do not pay "much higher rates" than Walmart/Costco, but actually pay LOWER rates for those videos because they buy a large volume.

Before you start claiming copyright infringments you really should look at 17 USC, section 109 of the the US Copyright law that you are claiming it violates. Rentals are completely legal and don't require any specific rights granted for them.

TB - I imagine that many of the people who rent the video are renting it because they don't want to pay what the artist wants. Presumably, that also means that the artist would get 0 sales. At least this way they are selling the title to smartflix. It's not like they are selling copies.

Zach

What SmartFlix does is legal, but I work for a small video business, and I can tell you that we and all of our colleagues agree that what SmartFlix does is not ethical. They absolutely have the legal right to rent our videos under the First Sale Doctrine, and all our titles are in their catalog. But what SmartFlix's intellectually dishonest FAQ does not mention is that the Hollywood studios settled their issues with renters like Blockbuster outside the legal system, leaving no protection for small producers.

Blockbuster, Netflix, and other major rental operations all have agreements with the studios, which include profit sharing, buying in bulk, and/or higher-priced rental copies of videos. The people at SmartFlix are smart and legally savvy, and they probably know very well that if Blockbuster and its competitors did not concede to these private agreements that Disney, Time Warner, and others would have spent millions passing legislation to make an exception in the First Sale Doctrine for video rental. Yes, this is conjecture, but if you doubt it, read about the Copyright Term Extension Act of 1998 and then tell me Disney would not have succeeded in protecting their properties from rental.

The First Sale Doctrine is good and important for the flow of information, and SmartFlix is operating legally within it. But they are not operating within the spirit of the few remaining good pieces of our intellectual property law. Their business is built on intellectual property which they did not create but use against the wishes of essentially every producer who did create it. They refuse to work in cooperation with the producers in any way, least of all with the type of revenue sharing arrangement that exists in some form between all major rental operations and studios.

Any type of cooperation or revenue-sharing would make the video producers feel differently, but SmartFlix refuses, and they seem to take pride in doing so. I have yet to run across a single producer who has anything but ill will toward SmartFlix. If you'd like an idea of how video producers feel, look up the SmartFlix thread on DVXUser.com. SmartFlix operates legally, yes, but it doesn't operate in the ethical way that makes me feel good about a business.

Doreen Maqi

I wonder how they stay in business.

I signed up for their University subscription, this is where you pay a set amount each month and you get to rent 3 DVDs each month. Sounded like a good idea.

I was over charged the first month, and they did give me a refund for the overcharge. However, for the Goldsmithing and Silversmithing University they never got the service correct and never sent me the DVDs. I had to contact them each month to get the credit and for the four months this went on, they never sent the monthly DVDs. The charges to my credit card did go through just fine.

Their website states that they will contact you within 48 hours in response to your email. The responses were of the type: "My boss hasn't gotten back with you yet?" There was no attempt at resolving issues, such as getting the DVDs sent out.

Now, at one point they did give me a free month. But they didn't send out the DVDs, so I'm a little confused as to what they were trying to accomplish.

After four months and numerous emails of which most went unanswered, they finally came up with a solution. They cancelled my subscription and said they would give me a refund. No apology, no explanation as to why they didn't send the DVDs.

Interestingly enough, I did have another subscription, where after the initial problem of being overcharged, and having to send emails before they would send the DVDs. They got it worked out and it was running just fine. Now for the topper. They cancelled the working subscription as well as the one that they couldn't get correct.

Doreen Maqi

I just realized I didn't put their name in my review. SmartFlix that's the name of the company that didn't send the DVDs and has the horrible customer service.

RAlberton

SmartFlix has some great videos, but their customer service is so bad that it would be comical if it weren't so frustrating. They really just do not give a damn about their customers. See the review at http://www.kk.org/cooltools/archives/001516.php for more negative experiences.

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Jacques

I rented from Smartflix without looking up forums like these. The first rental came within 10 days of purchasing. The DVD was in fine shape. I decided to rent another set soon after only to discover their website was not working properly. It was taking orders and charging you but not acknowledging the actual order. I had made the order twice not realizing this. Others multiple times. The next week Smarflix credited everyone back their additional orders. Today they are still having troubles with their site. I have not received my second order. They respond after 48 hours with promises of $5 credit vouchers. They seem extremely disorganized and not very trustworthy. I do not recommend renting dvds from them. It will be my last. If I don't receive the DVDs I am waiting for I may bite the bullet and buy them. Maybe a similar business could start up a how-to dvd rental company and do it right. I wish.

Manny

Now I am nervous...I just rented a "bundle" from SmartFlix, I did that a week ro more ago and when I look at my profile it still says "will ship in about unknown days.", they still do not know when these titles will be shipped. I have sent them emails in the past and have never received an answer...I hope that I am one of the lucky ones who is happy with the rental. I will let you know

Steve

I have been a smartflix customer for over a year, have rented probably 15 videos from them and other than their being slow to ship, have had no problems with them. the one time I had a defective disc, they shipped a replacement right away. The problems they seem to have indicate a problem with understaffing. They probably pay the help they do have minimum wage or slightly higher. For that money you do not get quality help. You get what you pay for.

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Mark

I started renting from Smartflix recently. At first things wnet ok. Howver about half the discs had some sort of problem, usually getting stuck. Some are not viewable, at all.The problem is they don't have enough copies of the more popular titles to go around. I'm waiting a month for some which they've already charged my card for. I'm done with them.

Mark

Mark

SmartFlix phone # is 781 316-2739

vince Papal

I have tried smartflix and they are terrible, I have been trying for about a year to get a refund back...DVD's their are basically home made by homemakers and then rented to you, they suffer in quility and seldom work..refunds are impossible, and the staff is only there three days a week.(which is just one part time person).it is basicaly ran from a home office at an individuals house..The dvd request are sent to amazon and then forwarded to your address..not a real business..I have forwarded my complaint to the Attorney Generals office ....

Vince...

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Jake

They are a fraud. I was part of their university program and everything was great until I didn't receive the dvds in the mail. A month later when I hadn't received any discs I am assured they will be marked as lost in the mail and won't be bothered again. A year later when the university is over and I'm not paying them monthly low and behold they start charging me monthly for the discs I still supposedly have out. I asked about their lost mail policy and they told me they are a small company and can't afford the losses so they hold their customers responsible. Don't trust anything they say because their customer support (1 person) leaves once they grasp what kind of company they work for. Beware.

tbcool

I see nothing wrong with what he does either. some of these titles are so expensive that who cares whether the artist gets paid. He/she got paid and they still do get paid from their private sites. who ever owns smartflix is renting out his own personal property. Or else, he'd be in jail or off the net.

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