Don, that's over-simplification. I think you're in the UK. With your expertise in older
technologies, you must know old-timers who lived through WWII. Britain was under existential threat.
There were shortages of everything. Metal is needed to make war materials. EMI was sitting on a pile
of metal that, at the time, had little commercial value. Meanwhile, since EMI, too, was under
existential threat, giving this metal to the war effort, as scrap, must have seemed like a very
sound business decision (pun intended). Throwing away tapes, in recent times, is much less
The same can be said about companies that sold metal parts for scrap in the Depression (ie
Paramount). It's a shame, but the parent company was hurting like never before, and those records
sold only a few dozen or a few hundred copies when they were put out. What's more valuable, having a
pile of metal parts for music that at the time had no commercial value, or having cash which could
keep the company afloat a few more days, weeks or months.
Hindsight is 20-20, but I find that close examination of why business decisions are made usually
leads to facts on the ground at the time of the decisions that made them seem rational in that
-- Tom Fine
----- Original Message -----
From: "Don Cox" <[log in to unmask]>
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Thursday, September 20, 2012 5:26 AM
Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] The EMI Vault
> On 19/09/2012, Stewart Gooderman wrote:
>> I'm only an amateur novice amongst very learned professionals on this
>> list. But I simply cannot fathom why a company would rid itself of its
>> assets knowing that there always is the possibility, as remote as it
>> may seem, that those assets could, in fact, have value or at least
>> some historical significance.
>> Rather than destroy it, why not offer it to someone who would want to
>> keep it? And why opt to keep a copy in favor of the original? I keep
>> on scratching my head and rolling my eyes because it all seems so
>> illogical to me.
> The usual problem is younger management coming in who think new
> recording techniques and new artists make the old valueless.
> A 19-year-old said to me: "I wouldn't want to watch a movie that was made
> before I was born."
> He will be moving into management somewhere in a few years.
> Don Cox
> [log in to unmask]