Average Prices

Gary Handman (ghandman@library.berkeley.edu)
Wed, 6 Dec 1995 09:07:06 -0800 (PST)

The average price issue for video is sorta knotty--there are obviously a
number video genres, and each seems to have its own pricing track. I've
found (completely unscientifically) that home video (cinema) is either in
the $20-25 range for older releases, 80-90 bucks for first run. Non-fiction
home video tends to be similarly priced, altho the average is probably toward
the middle of the 20-80 dollar scale for more substantive stuff.

Independently produced/distributed video is an entirely different
ballgame in a couple of respects. First, there is often an insidious
dichotomy made between public and academic libraries (academics don't get no respect, and so
we pay more in many cases). The general range of indie stuff, in my
experience, tends to go from $100 all the way up into the $400
stratosphere. I'd say that the average is somewhere in the mid $200s to
low 300s for the likes of First Run Icarus, Cinema Guild, Filmmakers
Library, Women Make Movies, etc.

There are of course, other video "flavors": association and institutionally-
produced videos have price averages all over the map. Industry-oriented
videos tend to be obscenely expensive ($300 and up) because it's what the
market will bear ($500 for a WordPerfect video...you better believe it!).

If Randy Pitman is lurking out there, he can probably fine tune the above
estimates for you, based on what comes across for review...

Unfortunately, there are no reliable printed cost/price indexes out there
for this stuff--Bowker is obviously pulling their figures out of a
particularly battered hat.

Gary Handman
Media Resources Center
Moffitt Library
UC Berkeley, CA 94720-6000