Cap Codes

Ebert's latest Movie Answer Man includes a note from a moviegoer angered by the cap codes in Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World. Ebert had addressed them before, but it was only while watching Master and Commander that I noticed the dots for the first time. They showed up repeatedly during the chase in the rain storm and were definitely distracting. For a minute or two, I tried to guess at what the dots were instead of following the chase.
At a preview screening of The Last Samurai in LA this weekend, a security guard spent the entire time scanning the audience with infrared binocs, checking, I presume, for recording devices. It's a shame, because as I was walking into the theater I was thinking that LA has so many impressive theaters (like the Bridge Cinema de Lux where Karen and I saw The Last Samurai), many more than Seattle does. The movie industry is moving towards the same antagonistic, distrustful relationship with its customers as the music industry. The type of customer who will watch a fuzzy, wallet-sized image of a movie on their desktop with lousy sound shouldn't worry movie studios.
And if the studios insist on making every moviegoing experience feel like a frisking, every theater feel like a police state, then can they at least stop forcing me to sit through those first person testimonial ads from before every movie?