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by Gary

I have a real problem with cheap CD / DVD cases! You know the kind? The ones manufactured and distributed by Bastards Inc.

There are two models in the Bastards Inc. range: Too Loose, and Too Tight.

The Too Loose model seems to apply more to DVD cases than CDs. This is the one where the plastic case is a little soft and flexible, with a little movement allowing the “core” (that holds the disc in place) to release. Then the disc is free to move around the case as it pleases during shipping, rubbing and scratching itself against the core and other molded parts of the box. A DVD shipped half way across the world from Amazon to my mailbox tends to move around a bit. Bonus points for Bastards Inc. if there are two discs and both manage to move around freely. The grand finale occurs when the recipient doesn’t expect the discs to be loose, opens the case on their birthday, and the discs hit the floor.

While the Too Loose model generally works on the element of surprise, the Too Tight model works on the “I dare you to try” premise. This model is equally applicable to CD and DVD cases, with special emphasis on Double CDs. The user opens the case of a brand new CD and attempts to remove the disc. But the core won’t let go! Next the disc is lifted at one end and and it starts to flex a little, before the user realizes “oh dear, this is one of those Bastards Inc. cases!”. Determined not to be beaten the user tries the other end of the CD. It’s harder to get your finger tips in there, but you’re determined to ease the prized disc out. The core holds tight, and the user finds that they are flexing the disc further than they would like, and at both ends. Finally the user tries pushing the core, just in case it has some surprise catch. If it’s a CD then there is no catch, and the brittle plastic threatens to snap. Invariably the Too Tight model will give the disc up with a snap, causing a brief moment of panic during which time users check to see if it was the case or disc that lost the battle.

Of course Bastards Inc. have done well to provide a total packaging solution for their cases, supplementing the range with two forms of security seal: the Tight Plastic with No Tab model, and the Permanent Glue Security Sticker.

The Tight Plastic with No Tab wrap is the most common, and is used on the full range of CD and DVD cases. The unsuspecting user looks for the edge of the plastic, and then attempts to find the tab. The theory goes that the tab will tear easily and allow the plastic to be removed in a mere second, but reality is different. No tab can be found (except perhaps during postmortem), so the user then moves to the top of the case to find the join in the wrapper. This join is easily found, but with little or no finger nails and no ready access to scissors, the user attempts to lift it with a pen or key. After several seconds of struggle a gap can be made, only for any pressure to result in bunching of the plastic. This bunching doubles / triples / quadruples the strength of the wrap, generally forcing the user to give up and walk to the kitchen for a sharp implement.

Possibly realizing that the Tight Plastic with No Tab model could be overcome with a little planning or ready access to cutting implements, Bastards Inc. launched the Permanent Glue Security Sticker to confound everyone. This sticker sometimes includes a hologram, symbolic of its position at the top of the Bastards Inc. range. The user attempts to peel off the sticker, and this is where the fun begins.

Possible outcomes are:

  • A small piece of a paper sticker tears and comes off, forcing the user to pick a further loose spot before repeating the exercise;
  • In the case of a plastic sticker on a plastic DVD case, the sticker holds tight and starts to tear the soft plastic DVD case cover with it;
  • A sticker (paper / plastic / hologram) does eventually come free, but leaves a sticky residue that will forever hold small pieces of dust, dirt, fluff, etc without ever giving them up.

All of that said, these Bastards Inc. models have been around for a while now. I can’t wait to see the next innovation that this company releases, hopefully in time for this Christmas season!

Do you know of any more products from the Bastards Inc. range?








3 Responses to “‘Ya Know What I Hate???”

  1. Don Says:

    Must be one of those Aussie things? I’ve never heard of that brand. I buy inexpensive cases all the time and have not had difficulty.

  2. Gary Says:

    Maybe my cynicism was too subtle…..

    “Bastards Incorporated” is a made up company / brand name that can be applied to anything not user friendly, as if maximum inconvenience and cursing was the primary objective in design and manufacture.

    eg: “This thing is so frustrating, I’ll bet it was made by Bastards Incorporated!”

    I’ve heard it a lot over the years. Maybe it is just an Australian thing. We tend not to take ourselves too seriously a lot of the time.

  3. Dominick Martinetti Says:

    Gary. I thought this blog was funny because I felt the same way 4 years ago and as such built a product to combat these problems. After a year we actually became a legitimate business, and 4 years later we are rocking! As an Aussie you may get a kick out of out brand name….SLAPPA (which as a Yank I can tell you I didn’t know the “meaning” until about 6 months after we rolled out the first cases. Anyway, if you want I can send you one to see if you feel our case actually beats what is made by “Bastards Inc”.

    Dom

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