Video Dogs : Mo’ Money Mo’ Problems

Update : Movies for work inquiry by Workplace Ombudsman, Annalise Walliker, Herald Sun, June 19, 2008: ‘THE owner of a shop offering free DVD hire instead of wages has admitted he made a “little mistake” and has withdrawn the offer… Mr Mallalieu said he believed he had been ambushed by union officials who alerted the media before speaking to him. “We’ve lost several hundred dollars this morning because the media have camped out the front, scaring away customers. It’s a mess over one little mistake,” he said.’

Store offers DVD hire instead of wages
Annalise Walliker
Herald Sun
June 18, 2008

A RIP-off or a move to a cashless society? A Melbourne video store is advertising for students to work for free DVD hire instead of wages.

The Herald Sun reports that a sign in the window of Video Dogs in Carlton reads ”DVD’s for free? Well almost…” Staff at the store confirmed two hours work each night would be remunerated solely with free DVDs.

Anthony Main, secretary for union UNITE, said it was one of the worst examples of young worker exploitation he had ever seen.

“We were alerted to the sign yesterday and where we visited the store last night it was confirmed by a staff member there were no wages involved,” he said.

“What will be next, working at McDonald’s in exchange for Big Macs?”

Mr Main said paying staff with goods and services rather than a minimum wage was illegal.

“We ask the local residents to think twice about where they are renting their DVDS from,” he said.

“Our message is, don’t to business with dogs.”

The Workplace Ombudsman is investigating, and will release a statement later today.

The Herald Sun is seeking comment from the store’s manager.

Huh. I was at Video Dogs (Buy! Rent! 178 Faraday Street, Carlton, Phone (03) 9347 2185) on Monday, and remember seeing the ad in question. On a vaguely ironic note, given the above, in December 2006, the owner of Video Dogs, Jonathan Mallalieu, was interviewed by the Musicians’ Union. Mallalieu being a musician and, presumably, a unionist… So much for employment; as for service, oh boy!

See also : Video shop accused of paying staff in DVDs,, June 18, 2008

About @ndy

I live in Melbourne, Australia. I like anarchy. I don't like nazis. I enjoy eating pizza and drinking beer. I barrack for the greatest football team on Earth: Collingwood Magpies. The 2024 premiership's a cakewalk for the good old Collingwood.
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14 Responses to Video Dogs : Mo’ Money Mo’ Problems

  1. Bob Saggy Sagat says:

    Would you blog for biccies?

  2. @ndy says:

    Disco biccies?

  3. TOXIC SHOCK says:

    I saw the Video Dogs guy on the news comparing his shop to Friends Of The Earth and saying his shop is a “not for profit ” organisation. Hahahaha

  4. @ndy says:

    Hey, they’re both in Melbourne; what more do you want? A wage? What’s that? Take my mother-in-law, please…

  5. dj says:

    Well, of course by “not for profit” he might mean he pays himself such a ridiculously high salary that there is no “profit”.

  6. @ndy says:

    Or he might mean it’s a failing business? In any case:


    Before entering into the subject-matter, allow me to make a few preliminary remarks. There reigns now on the Australian Continent a real absence of strikes, and a general clamour for a rise of profits. The question will turn up on our Interwebs. You, as readers of slackbastard, ought to have settled convictions upon this paramount question. For my own part, I considered it therefore my duty to skip lightly over the matter, even at the peril of putting your patience to a severe test.

    Another preliminary remark I have to make in regard to Citizen Mallalieu. He has not only proposed to you, but has publicly defended, in the interest of the working class, as he thinks, opinions he knows to be most unpopular with the working class, viz, no wages. Such an exhibition of moral courage all of us must highly honour. I hope that, despite the unvarnished style of my blog, at its conclusion he will find me agreeing with what appears to me the just idea lying at the bottom of his theses — the abolition of the wages system — which, however, in their present form, I cannot but consider theoretically false and practically dangerous.

    I shall now at once proceed to the business before us

  7. annie says:

    this video shop is so fantastic and has all the hard to find movies. sure, the popular movies and tv show dvds might be more expensive than say blockbuster or whatever but EVERYTHING ELSE IS LOVELY
    seriously, i work 4 hours a week for no money and what do i get? nothing except for experience and knowing i’m doing something good for the community.
    what is wrong with being paid with videos if it’s VOLUNTARY NOT A PAID POSITION. far out don’t people have entitlement to what they want to do? or is the herald sun pervading people’s minds again with mindless dribble.
    get. over. it

  8. Greg says:

    For a saner view of things see:

    “i work 4 hours a week for no money and what do i get?”

    Perhaps if you wanna get paid give UNITE a call…

  9. Andy says:

    Look frankly none of this is cutting to the real issue being: NOW I KNOW why Video Dogs staff are the most bone idle, lazy, rude, obnoxious, smarmy, and most unpleasant interactions I have in my otherwise fun filled life. I guess if I was stupid enough to work for a lousy free DVD I’d take out my frustrations on the customers also. Maybe try volunteering with the RSPCA or something guys – hugging a puppy may help you release your anger (especially the bloke with the dark curly hair and the sociopath monotone voice).

  10. Alexander Hine says:

    “Well, of course by “not for profit” he might mean he pays himself such a ridiculously high salary that there is no “profit”.” – if you knew anything about the profit margins in small DVD stores with high overheads and minimal turnover you’d realise how amusing that is 🙂

  11. Steve B says:

    I would defend this wonderful DVD store tooth and nail. Although I now live overseas, this place was one of my lifesavers in an increasingly bland/suburbanised/crap “how’s your weekend been so far” Melbourne.

    Can’t understand the whining and negativity.

  12. @ndy says:

    That’s cool. But I don’t believe the proprietors were being criticised for their tastes.

  13. dj says:

    Never trust a hipster, eh?

  14. GIllian says:

    Anyone who rented DVDs from Video Dogs would remember having to give a deposit of $50. I tried to get my deposit back, because I didn’t need to visit the store anymore (to rent or buy), and it has now automatically become a store credit (without notice!?). Then, I wanted to use the credit, and the store says that they cannot sell anything on credit. And since they do not rent out DVDs anymore, WHAT CAN I DO WITH MY $50 “CREDIT”?

    Video Dogs is a very dishonest business. They should return people’s deposits, before trying to continue as a business. I am surprised it is still trying to make money (by getting in new DVDs), when they have not returned what they owe their customers (or tried to give any notice of “deposits” becoming “credits”- which cannot be used!?).

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