Net Neutrality & VHS Tape Offer

President-elect Obama has made it one of his goals while in office to improve access to high-speed broadband Internet. America ranks 15th in the world in broadband adoption, and we should be number one or two. The FCC is going to get a big shakeup, the switch from analog to digital television happens nationwide on Feb. 17 (you do have digital don't you?) and questions about net neutrality -- which basically means that web content is free from interference by providers -- loom. The San Francisco Chronicle has a great article of all the changes coming to the communication landscape. There's plenty of fear in the world wide web that meddling hands will alter free speech on the Internet. The first big meddler might turn out to be the United Kingdom.

An article in The New York Times on Sunday said that British cabinet minister Andy Burnham wants to introduce a content rating system for the Internet, similar to the flawed, byzantine system for films created by the Motion Picture Association of America. Of course, this is to help protect the poor innocent children. Ummm...isn't that the parents' job? That's what filters and restriction are for, and it shouldn't compromise free speech. I find this move very disturbing and I'll be following it closely, so expect more posts about it.

Last night I dug in to the entertainment center and cleared it of VHS tapes. I threw out a garbage bag of about 20 cassettes -- some more than 20 years old -- where I had taped everything from China Beach and Marky Mark dancing in his CK briefs (don't judge) to Absolutely Fabulous and Will & Grace. In a large box sitting by my door are the actual movies I'm taking to the Book Nook in Decatur tomorrow. They pay 25 to 75 cents per tape, so I might come out of the deal with some jingle in my pocket. The ones they don't take are going to Goodwill. In the interest of goodwill to all you Modern Confessional readers, I thought I would list the movies I'm selling off. If you want one of them it's yours for free if you send me a buck or two for postage. Back channel email me at You have until 2 p.m. tomorrow to let me know. I babied all my movies so they are all in original boxes and in good condition:

Ma Saison Preferee (My Favorite Season), French and Saunders, Annie Lenox Live in Cental Park, The Old Lady Who Walked in the Sea, Widow of St. Pierre, David Lynch's Industrial Symphony No. 1, Story of Adele H., Some Mother’s Son, The Summer House, House of the Spirits, Remains of the Day, Ready to Wear, The New Age, Map of the Human HeartMadonna: Truth or Dare, Damage, Kids, Alice, September, 400 Blows, Impromptu, Night in the Life of Jimmy Reardon and The Piano

Since so many of you responded the R.I.P. VHS Tapes post and asked about converting tapes (including Betamax) to DVD, I did some Googling and found that CVS, Walgreen's, Costco, Ritz/Wolf Camera and Rite Aid have partnered with Yes Video to offer a transfer service. The cost is about $30 bucks to transfer two VHS tapes to one DVD. You can check it out at to see which stores offer the service. I have six VHS tapes I'm taking to be converted.


Anonymous said…
I would but I don't even own a VCR. Why isn't Truth or Dare on DVD? It seems like Madonna would have everything on DVD.

Anonymous said…
Another wonderful post. I chuckled about the Marky Mark taping.

And I totally agree about the parents being the ones who should filter the internet. It's so easy to go into the internet tools tab and adjust the settings. But really, over time, the best thing is to be in the room with young kids while they're on the web. And to talk about things. As much as we try to shield children, they can and will see anything they want to in the long run.

What a great video fest you're having. You've collected some great ones.
Thank you for
The San Francisco Chronicle link.

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