Sony has announced that it will not let its Blu-Ray disc production subsidiary produce any “adult” titles. As it did with Betamax, it is not going to make it easy for pornography producers to publish on Blu-Ray. This comes on the heels of the announcement by many major porn publishers that they will be using the HD DVD format for their titles.
Now, whether or not you’re a customer of blue movies, this is an important development. It’s well known — though rarely discussed — that many technology advances have been driven by pornography. Videotape, CD-ROMs, and DVDs all owe a significant portion of their early success to the fact that they were used to distribute “adult entertainment” content. This provided a quick ramp up in production volumes, which helped lower costs of both the media and the players.
Blu-Ray already has a number of strikes against it; it’s more expensive, it’s harder to get, and the media is physically very different from standard DVDs. As much as some may not want to admit it, the fact that the adult entertainment market is choosing HD DVD over Blu-Ray could be another significant factor in deciding which format will ultimately prevail.