----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Tom Fine" <[log in to unmask]>
> What is the genesis of the term "aircheck" and how did it come to mean
"off-air recording", or did
> it mean something different at another time?
Actually, I suspect it has always carried the same meaning...a recording
of a broadcast taken either off the air, if possible, or taken from the
audio just before it was fed into the transmitter.

When I was on staff at WILN...a carrier-current station at Illinois State
University...we had a tape recorder recording the output audio, so it could
be auditioned to make sure we weren't breaking any laws or student rules...
and that was called our "aircheck" tape.

As well, airchecks are made by/for advertising agencies, to make sure
the ads were actually broadcast...and, in some cases, made by/for the
station to make sure there were no problems with the transmission.

And, once home recording became possible, listeners could record
favourite programs...and those "in the know" called these "airchecks"
to sound professional.

Finally, I suppose one could refer to the announcing staff at Radio
Prague as "Air Czechs"...?!

Steven C. Barr