July 10, 2006 9:01 PM PDT

Guba inks film deal with Sony Pictures

Video-sharing site Guba has signed its second distribution deal with a major studio in less than a month, another sign the little-known company is quickly becoming a hot property in Hollywood.

Sony Pictures has agreed to offer 100 of the studio's feature-length films on Guba's online store, the companies said Monday. Among the growing number of video-sharing sites, Guba is the only one offering a means to legally download movies over the Internet.

CNET Reviews
Guba
Take the homemade and user-driven sensibilities of a YouTube, add the feature film pedigree of a Movielink, and you have Guba.

Warner Bros. Entertainment began selling 200 movie titles on Guba two weeks ago.

Video sharing on the Web is one of the hottest trends on the Internet and big entertainment companies are sidling up to market front-runners. NBC began recently promoting TV shows on YouTube. However, few video-sharing companies have proven they can make money.

Guba is profitable, said Guba CEO Thomas McInerney, and that's one of the things that attracted Sony, said Sean Carey, Sony's executive vice president of digital distribution.

"Most (user-generated video sites) are at the moment lacking a revenue model," Carey said. "Some of them are starting to embrace advertising, but Guba is the first to add premium studio content to their mix."

Other video-sharing sites should take heart as Sony's deal with Guba is nonexclusive. Carey said that studio chiefs want to do business with anyone--provided that a potential partner protects Sony's movies from being pirated. (Guba uses Microsoft's digital right's management to secure videos from unauthorized copying, McInerney said.)

But other video-sharing sites better hurry. Guba has jumped to a quick lead in building ties with studios. McInerney spent the past year shuttling between his company's San Francisco headquarters and Hollywood as he wooed studio executives.

"Certainly, there's more announcements coming," McInerney said. "We're speaking to almost all of the studios."

Sony's films are expected to go on sale at Guba on Wednesday. Newer releases will cost $19.99, while older titles will start at $9.99. All the videos can be downloaded and played on Windows Media Player. Some titles will also be available for rent.

See more CNET content tagged:
Sony Pictures, studio, Hollywood, Sony Corp., movies

30 comments

Join the conversation!
Add your comment
Same price as retail?
That seems a bit much seeing as how they don't have to make the CD's or the cases. New releases should be no more than $14.99 (and that's still kinda high IMO)...Oh well it's a start!
Posted by PCCRomeo (432 comments )
Reply Link Flag
In the UK..
Universal are talking £19.99 (which is roughly $25) for downloaded
films. Stick to physical media, boycott the download service and
show the studios they're being stupid.

M.
Posted by movielad (6 comments )
Link Flag
Same price as retail?
That seems a bit much seeing as how they don't have to make the CD's or the cases. New releases should be no more than $14.99 (and that's still kinda high IMO)...Oh well it's a start!
Posted by PCCRomeo (432 comments )
Reply Link Flag
In the UK..
Universal are talking £19.99 (which is roughly $25) for downloaded
films. Stick to physical media, boycott the download service and
show the studios they're being stupid.

M.
Posted by movielad (6 comments )
Link Flag
At that price point
You should be able to burn it to dvd, as long as you delete the downloaded file afterwards. The program could burn it, verify the disc, and if it verifies it deletes the downloaded file.
Posted by wazzledoozle (288 comments )
Reply Link Flag
What's the point?
It'd be cheaper AND probably quicker just to buy the title from your
local store. You'd also get better quality video too. The encoding
on these things have been terrible (at least for me!).

M.
Posted by movielad (6 comments )
Link Flag
At that price point
You should be able to burn it to dvd, as long as you delete the downloaded file afterwards. The program could burn it, verify the disc, and if it verifies it deletes the downloaded file.
Posted by wazzledoozle (288 comments )
Reply Link Flag
What's the point?
It'd be cheaper AND probably quicker just to buy the title from your
local store. You'd also get better quality video too. The encoding
on these things have been terrible (at least for me!).

M.
Posted by movielad (6 comments )
Link Flag
That is laughable...
$19.99 and $9.99 I mean that's more than some DVDs. And you'll have to wait and wait. Most Guba videos download at 100-200KBps (I'm on 10Mb cable). And it'll be limited by DRM. At least when I buy a DVD I can play it anywhere I want.

They had better rethink this. $19.99 and I can get all the videos on want on Netflix or $19.99 and I can get 1 movie that will take a couple hours to download (as long as my connection doesn't drop) and play it on one computer.

Sheesh.
Posted by tmattoneill (7 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Windows Only
Way to innovate Guba/Sony. Nothing new in offering movies via
Windows Media. Warner Bros., Universal and just about
everybody else is doing it. Nothing new at all.

Personally having tried such a service I found waiting for the
video to download for several hours and finding that the quality
was never as good as DVD was pathetic. Why spend money on a
service when you've got more restrictions thrown at you, takes
time to download, and then the quality just isn't as great?

A challenge to the film studios: come up with a system that can
play on ANY computer system, offers good quality (as good if
not better than DVD), and has a decent set of user rights thrown
in and not some draconian law that states you can only view on
a Windows computer called Fribble on the 1st Tuesday of the
first month of 2007 (okay, I exagerate - but Windows Media
DRM + over-zealous film studio = bad for the consumer).

I don't expect to see a fully cross-platform service until Apple
does it stuff, but then how are Linux users going to view the
content? It's a toughy..

M.
Posted by movielad (6 comments )
Reply Link Flag
LOL
1. It's only offered in Windows media format, they stopped making
a dedicated player for the Macintosh
2. To download a full length film over the net, will still take a long
time, my cable modem speeds vary, think comcast is throttling
bandwidth
3. at $19.99 for a new release is mind boggling, for i can usually
find a new release in a physical matter at my local Target that is
only 5 minutes away.
Posted by (18 comments )
Reply Link Flag
LOL
1. It's only offered in Windows media format, they stopped making
a dedicated player for the Macintosh
2. To download a full length film over the net, will still take a long
time, my cable modem speeds vary, think comcast is throttling
bandwidth
3. at $19.99 for a new release is mind boggling, for i can usually
find a new release in a physical matter at my local Target that is
only 5 minutes away.
Posted by (18 comments )
Reply Link Flag
why u hating ?
GUBA's on the brink of something huge. they're the first vid sharing site to distribute sony on line! they might not be perfect, but i wouldn't write them off yet!
Posted by geekspeak78 (2 comments )
Reply Link Flag
why u hating ?
GUBA's on the brink of something huge. they're the first vid sharing site to distribute sony on line! they might not be perfect, but i wouldn't write them off yet!
Posted by geekspeak78 (2 comments )
Reply Link Flag
piece of cake
I am no movie fanatic, but I do subscribe to 'X' product for ease of download.
GUBA's no-software download blew me off, it's extremely simple to watch movies, no bugging popups or background services and the quality is on-par with other download sites. I am only waiting for them to start a monthly subscription service and soooon I will have an account with Guba.
Posted by moviefreakster (2 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Cool deal..
Just downloaded Spider Man 2. It worked really well, it began
playing the movie almost immediately. I like GUBA's clean
interface and props to them for taking the lead.

Apple hasn't opened up its DRM, so not having Mac support isn't
GUBA's fault. I really like the price of the rental. Download to
own is too expensive. Hopefully, they'll get more content and
convince the studios to lower the prices to buy titles.

Still, renting is simple, fast, and well priced. Nice work guys.
Posted by schalpper (2 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Cool deal..
Just downloaded Spider Man 2. It worked really well, it began
playing the movie almost immediately. I like GUBA's clean
interface and props to them for taking the lead.

Apple hasn't opened up its DRM, so not having Mac support isn't
GUBA's fault. I really like the price of the rental. Download to
own is too expensive. Hopefully, they'll get more content and
convince the studios to lower the prices to buy titles.

Still, renting is simple, fast, and well priced. Nice work guys.
Posted by schalpper (2 comments )
Reply Link Flag
GUBA in a broader sense
What I find really appealing about GUBA is their selection of user uploaded videos...it's a treasure trove for some hella rare/hard to find movies and videos on the site--for free. In my opinion I think that getting Sony to hook up with them is a great step for the expansion of the site, that will open a lot of doors..creating that much more versatility.
Posted by hiphopjunkie (2 comments )
Reply Link Flag
The Future of EntertainmentThe Future of Entertainment
It may seem expensive and ludicrous now, but that is because change does not come easily. The technology exists that allows one to watch movies uploaded to their computer on their television via wireless connection. Once this technology becomes mainstream, an integration of the internet with multimedia content has endless possibilities. Imagine being able to access movies and television from all over the world and watch it in your living room. As an anti-television (I loathe commercials and the brainwashing that ensues) but pro movie individual, I think that this approach will revolutionize content distribution-- GUBA is merely a pioneer... But then again, what do I know, I don't watch TV, maybe the internet is not an effective means of content distribution, even though it has a global reach...
Posted by msbrb (4 comments )
Reply Link Flag
The Future of EntertainmentThe Future of Entertainment
It may seem expensive and ludicrous now, but that is because change does not come easily. The technology exists that allows one to watch movies uploaded to their computer on their television via wireless connection. Once this technology becomes mainstream, an integration of the internet with multimedia content has endless possibilities. Imagine being able to access movies and television from all over the world and watch it in your living room. As an anti-television (I loathe commercials and the brainwashing that ensues) but pro movie individual, I think that this approach will revolutionize content distribution-- GUBA is merely a pioneer... But then again, what do I know, I don't watch TV, maybe the internet is not an effective means of content distribution, even though it has a global reach...
Posted by msbrb (4 comments )
Reply Link Flag
The Future of EntertainmentThe Future of Entertainment
It may seem expensive and ludicrous now, but that is because change does not come easily. The technology exists that allows one to watch movies uploaded to their computer on their television via wireless connection. Once this technology becomes mainstream, an integration of the internet with multimedia content has endless possibilities. Imagine being able to access movies and television from all over the world and watch it in your living room. As an anti-television (I loathe commercials and the brainwashing that ensues) but pro movie individual, I think that this approach will revolutionize content distribution-- GUBA is merely a pioneer... But then again, what do I know, I don't watch TV, maybe the internet is not an effective means of content distribution, even though it has global reach...
Posted by msbrb (4 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Loyalties
Personally I wouldnt trust any of the MPAA guys (and gals). I
bought a mac powerbook awhile back and then found that my
DVD player had een hijacked by Hollywood - specifically that I
could only choose a DVD region four times, and on the 5th
decide which region was to be the default. Travelling made this
seem more cruel than needed. Why this restriction? It makes no
sense unless one realises Hollywood is in there to monopolize
markets i.e. to make sure no 'foreign' shows becomes popular or
viewed in america. Thankfully I cracked this boobytrap and can
now watch any region DVD - furthermore I'd love these b's to
take me to court for being able to watch movies or shows I
WANT TO WATCH. Such as the excellent British 'Absolute Power'
or the Australian comedy gem, 'Kath and Kym'. US shows seem
lacklustre and unispired - comedy is not just a pie in the face. I
dont care about this new service - even though I have windows
on my mac. I dont care to watch only what they'll let me - there's
a whole brilliant world outside of american movies, and I'll
continue to buy those thanks - and then burn them region free
my american cousins can watch some quality footage that has
not been region coded to keep them ignorant. If this is piracy,
think that if DVD players weren't region restricted, I would have
purchased these DVD's to send to the US, and not be forced to
waste my time removing the coding. Stop region restrictions and
allow truly global entertainment!
Posted by flashfast (38 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Loyalties
Personally I wouldnt trust any of the MPAA guys (and gals). I
bought a mac powerbook awhile back and then found that my
DVD player had een hijacked by Hollywood - specifically that I
could only choose a DVD region four times, and on the 5th
decide which region was to be the default. Travelling made this
seem more cruel than needed. Why this restriction? It makes no
sense unless one realises Hollywood is in there to monopolize
markets i.e. to make sure no 'foreign' shows becomes popular or
viewed in america. Thankfully I cracked this boobytrap and can
now watch any region DVD - furthermore I'd love these b's to
take me to court for being able to watch movies or shows I
WANT TO WATCH. Such as the excellent British 'Absolute Power'
or the Australian comedy gem, 'Kath and Kym'. US shows seem
lacklustre and unispired - comedy is not just a pie in the face. I
dont care about this new service - even though I have windows
on my mac. I dont care to watch only what they'll let me - there's
a whole brilliant world outside of american movies, and I'll
continue to buy those thanks - and then burn them region free
my american cousins can watch some quality footage that has
not been region coded to keep them ignorant. If this is piracy,
think that if DVD players weren't region restricted, I would have
purchased these DVD's to send to the US, and not be forced to
waste my time removing the coding. Stop region restrictions and
allow truly global entertainment!
Posted by flashfast (38 comments )
Reply Link Flag
True Loyalties
Personally I wouldnt trust any of the MPAA guys (and gals). I
bought a mac powerbook awhile back and then found that my
DVD player had een hijacked by Hollywood - specifically that I
could only choose a DVD region four times, and on the 5th
decide which region was to be the default. Travelling made this
seem more cruel than needed. Why this restriction? It makes no
sense unless one realises Hollywood is in there to monopolize
markets i.e. to make sure no 'foreign' shows becomes popular or
viewed in america. Thankfully I cracked this boobytrap and can
now watch any region DVD - furthermore I'd love these b's to
take me to court for being able to watch movies or shows I
WANT TO WATCH. Such as the excellent British 'Absolute Power'
or the Australian comedy gem, 'Kath and Kym'. US shows seem
lacklustre and unispired - comedy is not just a pie in the face. I
dont care about this new service - even though I have windows
on my mac. I dont care to watch only what they'll let me - there's
a whole brilliant world outside of american movies, and I'll
continue to buy those thanks - and then burn them region free
my american cousins can watch some quality footage that has
not been region coded to keep them ignorant. If this is piracy,
think that if DVD players weren't region restricted, I would have
purchased these DVD's to send to the US, and not be forced to
waste my time removing the coding. Stop region restrictions and
allow truly global entertainment!
Posted by flashfast (38 comments )
Reply Link Flag
True Loyalties
Personally I wouldnt trust any of the MPAA guys (and gals). I
bought a mac powerbook awhile back and then found that my
DVD player had een hijacked by Hollywood - specifically that I
could only choose a DVD region four times, and on the 5th
decide which region was to be the default. Travelling made this
seem more cruel than needed. Why this restriction? It makes no
sense unless one realises Hollywood is in there to monopolize
markets i.e. to make sure no 'foreign' shows becomes popular or
viewed in america. Thankfully I cracked this boobytrap and can
now watch any region DVD - furthermore I'd love these b's to
take me to court for being able to watch movies or shows I
WANT TO WATCH. Such as the excellent British 'Absolute Power'
or the Australian comedy gem, 'Kath and Kym'. US shows seem
lacklustre and unispired - comedy is not just a pie in the face. I
dont care about this new service - even though I have windows
on my mac. I dont care to watch only what they'll let me - there's
a whole brilliant world outside of american movies, and I'll
continue to buy those thanks - and then burn them region free
my american cousins can watch some quality footage that has
not been region coded to keep them ignorant. If this is piracy,
think that if DVD players weren't region restricted, I would have
purchased these DVD's to send to the US, and not be forced to
waste my time removing the coding. Stop region restrictions and
allow truly global entertainment!
Posted by flashfast (38 comments )
Reply Link Flag
That is laughable...
$19.99 and $9.99 I mean that's more than some DVDs. And you'll have to wait and wait. Most Guba videos download at 100-200KBps (I'm on 10Mb cable). And it'll be limited by DRM. At least when I buy a DVD I can play it anywhere I want.

They had better rethink this. $19.99 and I can get all the videos on want on Netflix or $19.99 and I can get 1 movie that will take a couple hours to download (as long as my connection doesn't drop) and play it on one computer.

Sheesh.
Posted by tmattoneill (7 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Windows Only
Way to innovate Guba/Sony. Nothing new in offering movies via
Windows Media. Warner Bros., Universal and just about
everybody else is doing it. Nothing new at all.

Personally having tried such a service I found waiting for the
video to download for several hours and finding that the quality
was never as good as DVD was pathetic. Why spend money on a
service when you've got more restrictions thrown at you, takes
time to download, and then the quality just isn't as great?

A challenge to the film studios: come up with a system that can
play on ANY computer system, offers good quality (as good if
not better than DVD), and has a decent set of user rights thrown
in and not some draconian law that states you can only view on
a Windows computer called Fribble on the 1st Tuesday of the
first month of 2007 (okay, I exagerate - but Windows Media
DRM + over-zealous film studio = bad for the consumer).

I don't expect to see a fully cross-platform service until Apple
does it stuff, but then how are Linux users going to view the
content? It's a toughy..

M.
Posted by movielad (6 comments )
Reply Link Flag
piece of cake
I am no movie fanatic, but I do subscribe to 'X' product for ease of download.
GUBA's no-software download blew me off, it's extremely simple to watch movies, no bugging popups or background services and the quality is on-par with other download sites. I am only waiting for them to start a monthly subscription service and soooon I will have an account with Guba.
Posted by moviefreakster (2 comments )
Reply Link Flag
GUBA in a broader sense
What I find really appealing about GUBA is their selection of user uploaded videos...it's a treasure trove for some hella rare/hard to find movies and videos on the site--for free. In my opinion I think that getting Sony to hook up with them is a great step for the expansion of the site, that will open a lot of doors..creating that much more versatility.
Posted by hiphopjunkie (2 comments )
Reply Link Flag
 

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