This is nothing new but it seems like a lot of people still don’t realise that this can happen so think of this as a reminder post. When you buy a movie or TV series via Xbox Live (or anything really) you are not guaranteed to always be able to re-download that item.
This has come to light again on reddit with a user who had a conversation with an Xbox Live customer support person about why they couldn’t re-download an old series that they purchased in 2007.
You can follow the link for the full text but basically the customer service rep likens it to you scratching a DVD and the retailer refusing to refund you the price you paid. This is obviously nothing like the retailer coming into your home and removing the item you purchased but this is exactly what can happen with digital sales.
So if you are one of the millions of people building massive gaming, movie and music digital libraries then just be aware that they can all legally be taken away at a moments notice. And worse still if you are using the online service as a substitute cloud service then remember they can remove whatever they want from their servers without notice.
Your best bet is to download the library to an external device but even then there is no guarantee that the media will play when you need it to. If they have lost a lawsuit they will simply remove the media when you plug it back in.
Welcome to the future… don’t you love it.