Blockbuster - A Product Service System (PSS)

It’s not that we are fond of megalithic multi-nationals but we wanted a vehicle to demonstrate two things. 1. that the ubiquitious POTS (person-on-the-street) has already embraced, albeit unknowingly, Product Service Systems (PSS) and 2. that there’s gold in them thar acronyms. As we keep saying they are many ways in which PSS work but in simple terms you pay for the service not the product. The case in point with Blockbuster is that you don’t need to personally own thousands of video or DVD movies to experience the enjoyment that access to so many different titles might offer. Basically Blockbuster is a library. Many people have the opportunity to borrow (for a fee) movies, instead of books. It is a form of sharing, not exactly in the community spirit model, but sharing nevertheless. And it works commercially, to the tune of ...... $5.9 billion USD in revenues for 2003. And with nearly 9,000 stores in 26 countries servicing more than 3 million customer per day, this is certainly no tie-dyed t-shirt business.

Now, we are not suggesting that home entertainment is inherently green, in fact read somewhere recently (but lost the link) that all these new widescreen TVs are set to increase household energy use. But we are saying that it's better that a 100 or so people all share the same copy of The Day After Tomorrow than each owning their own disc and plastic case. PSS is not some airy-fairy concept cooked up by out-of-touch academics, it is in action all around us. We just need to do a whole heap more of it. Own less - live more.

PS. Would love to now how many rentals a single DVD goes through, on average, before it is ‘retired.’ Any one know? ::Blockbuster

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