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ARSCLIST  August 2013

ARSCLIST August 2013

Subject:

Re: CBS News on LOC efforts to preserve video history

From:

Tom Fine <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Association for Recorded Sound Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Thu, 1 Aug 2013 09:03:07 -0400

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (83 lines)

If the skill set to maintain quad video players is really almost died off, let's hope the LOC is 
prioritizing transfers and concentrating on news/actualities and documentaries/non-fiction before 
they work on the likes of "I Love Lucy." That does not seem to be the case as presented by the CBS 
News report.

I don't see why the LOC is in the business of preserving commercial TV shows in the first place. The 
current owners of "I Love Lucy," for example, seem to view this product as profitable since they 
have it for sale in multi-DVD sets right now. Just about any "classic" TV dreck is shown in re-runs 
all over cable TV, again benefitting the copyright owners. So why are the taxpayers expending any 
money or effort to digitize this material? What's next, the race to save the decaying "Survivor" 
episodes?

Commercial "entertainment" is NOT history. It may be dated cultural artifacts, but it is not as 
important as real historic video, movies and sounds. In 1000 years, it will matter if there is 
footage of the Kennedy assassination or the moon landing and its coverage by media outlets around 
the world, this will matter to historians and history (if humans have managed not to self-extinct by 
then). Episodes of "I Love Lucy" will not matter. In fact, they don't matter today except as 
junk-food entertainment for the nostalgic. I say the same, BTW, with regards to old radio content. 
It's much more important to preserve FDR fireside chats than to worry about episodes of "The Lone 
Ranger." One could make the same argument about recordings of historical live music performances 
(should be preserved by the LOC, but with copyright releases so they are available to those paying 
for their preservation) vs commercially successful "hit" products (should be preserved on the dime 
of the copyright owners, with their right to make money from them as long as the copyright lasts).

-- Tom Fine

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Steve Greene" <[log in to unmask]>
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Thursday, August 01, 2013 8:43 AM
Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] CBS News on LOC efforts to preserve video history


> JRF would certainly be able to recreate the coils and the ferrite mounting
> of the heads.  Quad video heads are mounted (four of them) on a rotating
> headwheel assembly running on a floating air bearing.  Renovating those
> headwheels involves specialized jigs and precision machine tooling that
> would be probably within JRF's capabilities, but non-trivial (and probably
> non-economic) to re-create from scratch.
>
> Steve Greene
> Audiovisual Archivist
> Office of Presidential Libraries
> National Archives and Records Administration
> (301) 837-1772
>
>
> On Wed, Jul 31, 2013 at 4:10 PM, Roderic G Stephens
> <[log in to unmask]>wrote:
>
>> "Subject: [ARSCLIST] CBS News on LOC efforts to pres
>> Tom Fine wrote:
>>
>> "Subject: [ARSCLIST] CBS News on LOC efforts to preserve video history
>>
>>
>>
>> http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-18563_162-57596237/library-of-congress-races-to-preserve-tv-history/
>>
>> Question about one "fact" stated in the story, by an LOC employee -- there
>> is really only one guy who works on the heads for Ampex 1" machines, and
>> he's in his 80s?
>> -- Tom Fine"
>>
>>
>> ________________________________
>>
>>
>> My take on this is that perhaps the "one guy" should be working with
>> someone that has the technical expertise to learn the ins and outs of the
>> Ampex 2" quad VTR plus, isn't a company like JRF Magnetic Services able to
>> recondition VTR quad heads?
>>
>>
>> http://www.jrfmagnetics.com/index.html?JRF_mainframe=/JRF_replacement_heads.html
>>
>> Or, this site lists a number of companies that still do 2" quad work:
>>
>> http://www.labguysworld.com/VTR_Links.htm
>>
>
> 

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