Good or bad idea?
BAD IDEA!!!! Universal is already one of the worst providers of DVD content. This demonstrates a determination to stick with an out-dated business model. Entertainment companies can no longer horde their content and expect to somehow create a “lost treasure” pile that gains interest (as in savings account interest). When consumers literally have thousands of options all vying for their their most precious commodity – their time, by not publishing content, all Universal and HBO are doing is creating a situation where no one will be interested in their content. I can’t think of a quicker way to go bankrupt.
If HBO thinks that by doing this they can get more consumers to subscribe to their “exclusive” content — they are living in the 1980s. Or maybe even the 1960s. That might have worked when the US only had three television networks, but in a world where cable/satellite television alone provides hundreds of channels full of original programming this is truly an out-of-date pipe-dream. Add in the Internet, DVD and Blu-Ray, games of all types, comics, movies, live events such as sports, and even good old-fashioned books, and the consumer doesn’t so much have to search for entertainment as he or she must find a way of whittling it down to the content most interesting and appropriate to their own interests and life.