The Videodyne Home Video Information Website

  What's What?

Who's Who?

This website tracks consumer home video rental demand based upon reports published each week by Vidtrac, Video Business and Video Store Magazine (a.k.a. "the big three"). An understanding of these three sources of information is helpful in understanding where the Videodyne numbers come from. Towards that end, this page explains a little bit about these three sources of information, e.g., the difference between them and their relationship with each other. First caveat is Videodyne is not affiliated with any of them nor does Videodyne endorse one source of information over the others. If you want an in-depth explanation of who's who, it'd be best for you contact each one directly, which you can fortunately do now that all three have their own websites up and running. But for a brief, maybe not completely accurate and definitely  irreverent, overview, read on:

The "Big Three" are not affiliated with each other and, in the case of Video Business and Video Store Magazine--the two trade magazines--there is a friendly rivalry. This does not, however, stop some sharing of information or the occasional coordinated effort among these three--usually between Vidtrac and one of the trade magazines. Coordinated efforts between the two trade magazines is relatively rare although instances of staff swapping--personnel leaving one to go work for the other is not uncommon. In fact, if you tried to map out the personnel changes among these three, it would start to look like one of those 1970's Rock n' Roll Family Trees.

Vidtrac is a service of the Video Software Dealer's Association (V.S.D.A.), the largest and most influential trade organization representing the home video retail specialist. Each week, Vidtrac collects point of sale information from video retailers nationwide. This data is used to estimate how many dollars were spent by consumers that week on home video rentals overall as well as to produce a list of the ten most popular videos for the week, ranked by national revenue. This information is published on the VSDA website, usually on Thursdays, and can be accessed by any interested party. They also publish data for video game rentals and DVD rentals. You can read the VSDA's description of the Vidtrac program by visiting their website.

Video Business is a Los Angeles based trade magazine covering the news and views of the home video retail specialist. It's published weekly, it's advertiser supported, and free to qualified readers. They publish several charts each week; one of which tracks overall video rental activity for the week and another which lists the top forty videos for the week. 

Video Business has forged relationships with a number of outside market research suppliers, including Alexander & Associates and  Vidtrac in the past, and has used these outside vendors for much of their published market research. 

In the first half of 2000, however, Video Business secured an exclusive arrangement with the VSDA to publish Vidtrac numbers in their magazine. Because Vidtrac and Video Business video rental charts are now identical, this website has stopped publishing the Video Business Top 10 charts on a regular basis. 

Video Business is part of Cahner's Business Information--the same folks who publish Variety magazine, "the show biz bible" for the Hollywood entertainment industry. Video Business is part of the "Variety Group Publications" and Video Business' head honcho--Publisher, Rose Einstein--was brought onboard after sixteen years at Variety. Video Business is quite proud of their affiliation with Variety and slip in references to this relationship every chance they get.

Video Store Magazine is a Santa Ana, California based trade magazine covering the news and views of the home video retail specialist. It's published weekly, it's advertiser supported, and free to qualified readers. They publish several charts each week; one of which tracks total spending on video rentals for the week and another which ranks the top twenty five titles for the week. They measure video rentals by dollars earned. They are not as aggressive at forging relationships with outside market research vendors preferring instead to maintain a large in-house market research staff.

Video Store Magazine's information for both the total video rental demand and the top renting videos is based on individual store reports sent each week from video retailers.

For all intents and purposes, Video Store Magazine does not track sales of prerecorded videocassette to consumers nor does it track video game rentals or sales. They have secured an exclusive arrangement with VideoScan--an outfit now part of the Neilson empire that tracks video sales information--to publish information on the top selling videos.  Despite their much ballyhooed acquisition, they have yet to use any of the information in their magazine.

Video Store Magazine is not owned by Cahner's Business Information and they're not affiliated with Variety. Variety used to publish Video Store Magazine's video rental charts but they stopped that around October 1995. Video Store Magazine is part of the "Entertainment/Marketing" group of Advanstar Communications--a privately held corporation that publishes trade magazines and manages a variety of expositions and trade shows.  The Expo side of Advanstar's Entertainment/Marketing group is responsible for running the home video industry's two biggest annual trade shows--the East Coast Video Show and the V.S.D.A. convention. 

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Last Updated on October 26, 2000