- movies start showing at dollar theaters
- shows on premium TV channels become available for rental through Netflix
- DVDs, CDs, video games, and books become available used
- libraries add media to their collection
- movies are broadcast on over-the-air television
- media formats go obsolete (e.g. VHS tapes now, CDs and non-HD DVDs soon) and become extremely cheap
- consume more with the same amount of money, or
- use a lot less money for the same amount of consumption.
- you don't get to experience the excitement of premieres at the same time as other people
- if you're excited about something you have to wait until it eventually shows up under your terms
These tradeoffs parallel those of investing. Let's say you decide to invest $1,000. Then you are depriving yourself of the short-term gratification of $1,000 worth of consumption now, for the promise of much more than $1,000 worth of consumption later. If you choose to wait to see Iron Man until it's at the dollar theater or on Netflix, in a sense you are "investing" the experience of watching Iron Man for the promise that the experience becomes much cheaper in the future.
We apply this mentality to the media we consume. When something comes out we make a quick assesment as to where our "strike price" is. A movie is either worth seeing at a full-price theater, a discount theater, renting on Netflix, or not seeing at all. In addition to saving money, this moment of reflection also helps us sort out the movies that are actually worth our time, from the ones that we're only interested in due to marketing pressure.