Online rental would allow friends to swap DVDs

Students will receive special access to a new DVD lending Web site before it is made available to the general public, a founder of the DVD lending Web site said.

Tim Jackson, founder of LendAround, said the Web site is currently a private, pre-release version but will be made available to the TCU community before going mainstream. Jackson said LendAround is extending a free invitation to students to join the Web site to help set up the exchange of DVDs between online friends.

Jackson said the Web site allows users to browse and search their friends’ DVD collections before requesting to borrow one. LendAround then monitors who has borrowed your DVD, and you can notify the borrower via e-mail when you would like it back, Jackson said.

There are a lot of DVDs in American households that sit around collecting dust instead of being put to good use, Jackson said.

“The average American has approximately 10 DVDs. The average U.S. college student has something around 150 Facebook friends,” Jackson said. “Just think how many free movies that would be if you got to see all of the movies that belong to your friends.”

Mike Haeg, a senior political science major, said he thinks students will like the idea because it’s original and an easy way to save money.

“It sounds like you can save some money on renting DVDs by just borrowing from your friends,” Haeg said. “You might not know what DVDs your friends have and they might have a huge collection.”

Marco Cuevas, a senior in the artist diploma program, said the idea is good in some ways but that it would ultimately hurt those in the movie industry. The decrease of album sales in the music industry is a good comparison, Cuevas said.

“If you want to record a CD, for example, you have to work maybe years and to see your work not being purchased is not very nice,” Cuevas said.

Jackson said despite some moral objections, there is a lot of buzz and excitement surrounding the possibilities for LendAround.

“Once you’ve built a community of friends that has proven themselves trustworthy, then there is tremendous potential to do lots of different things,” Jackson said.

To get your free invitation, send an e-mail to [email protected] saying what kind of movies you like, what experiences you’ve had in the past with lending and borrowing DVDs, and how many friends you think would trust you with their DVDs.