while not intending to tell you to give up all hope, I am of the opinion that anything of the lesser known or lesser remembered is not likely to turn up if it hasn't by now.
Presume that someone who was alive to record any aircheck in 1967-68 would have been, at best, at least a teenager. That means a birthday somewhere in 1954-55 at the latest. Anyone who was older than 13 at that time had to have been born earlier.
So, anyone who could have recorded said aircheck has to be at least 64 years old now. And all of the old folks who have at any time collected airchecks have likely already made them available and the likelihood of them finding something in their archives that they forgot about is also greatly reduced. After a half-century it becomes highly improbable.
Add to that the number of aircheckers who were alive then but older than our hypothetical teenager. How many of them have passed away? How many of those had their aircheck collection tossed by their next of kin who have no idea who Jack Spector was, much less why there is a tape of him in that box of recordings.
I think we are damned close -- if we aren't there already -- of having everything that can possibly still exist being already available to hear. Short of inventing a time machine and going back with the equipment to record these things, I doubt that wish of surviving rarities can be fulfilled.
In other words, a certain Rolling Stones song is fast becoming a self-fulfilling prophecy.
One problem is that whenever the topic of missing episodes comes up in the media they usually give most of the emphasis to TV, sometimes radio barely gets a mention. In conversations I've had with people who don't follow this subject as much as I do, most will be aware of missing episodes of Dr Who but that's about as far as it goes.
Another problem is if you approach the BBC and tell them you have 15 minutes of a Noel Edmonds show and 20 minutes of a Tony Blackburn show and do they want it, the answer will most likely be no. They need to stop being selective and accept everything. One thing they could do is to add an upload button to each Genome entry so people could upload what they have (also an indication on the page of whether an item is in the archive already would be useful too, to save people uploading something that's already there!). There's a huge amount of missing radio but it's spread all over the place, usenet, forums, youtube, facebook, people upload it where they can. If the BBC provided a repository where it could be uploaded to they'd find content would flood in.
I suggested having a "YouTube for radio" where people could upload what they have 8 years ago on this very forum (see this thread) as I believe sharing this missing material online is the only way of ensuring its survival for future generations.
So much is being lost forever because the people who recorded it have "shuffled off this mortal coil" and their descendants have binned their possessions or thrown them in a skip.
Even more frustrating is when missing material is offered back to the BBC, or to the British Library, and is rejected!
Thankfully there are now organisations like Kaleidoscope who will archive missing radio shows that are no longer wanted.
It's good to see the Genome database is now linking to over 17,000 radio and 900 TV programmes. Allowing the public to upload audio files of missing shows would be a great idea as I suspect the majority of the 4 million radio broadcasts listed on it do not officially exist.
I doubt it will ever happen, though!
Those of us interested in archive radio will have to continue sharing and trading "illegally" in programmes that the copyright holders couldn't care less about...
"Thankfully there are now organisations like Kaleidoscope who will archive missing radio shows that are no longer wanted."
Never to be heard again. At least the Beeb airs new discoveries such as the TDiscs found in Bristol. Never heard K. of the dusty archives ever airing any newly discovered radio recordings.
It is the likes of the folks hunting down recordings of Dad's Army (none are lost), MFTM, Clitheroe Kid, Parsley Sidings, Navy Lark, Steptoe, BFBS Archives, etc., etc., that are the saviours. They spend hours of their own free time and hundreds (thousands?) of pounds of their hard-earned in hunting down recordings, making digital copies, and importantly letting others have access to their work for free.
It's annoying when something is found to exist, but then it's gone again. For example Dan Dare on Radio Luxembourg ran for years but until fairly recently all that existed was one episode in the most horrible quality ever. Then in a list of returned episodes as a result of one of the BBC's campaigns some years ago it was reported that a 2nd really horrible quality episode had been found, and also more importantly one other episode on disc in pristine quality... but Radio Luxembourg is nothing to do with the BBC so they won't have it, someone else will... so it's found and then lost again.
My various archives, are mentioned and will be kept intact when my time is up, it should be for the owner who has kept and cared for his collection of prized objects to make sure his relatives know their value, not money wise but historic value, i have seen so many treasured object rot in a scrapyard, where the relatives took £500 more, than have it preserved as the former owner would have wished. I have a lot of 1970s computers eg PET 2001, most still work.
Post by colinsimpspon on Jan 28, 2019 14:31:34 GMT
Yes I think we are getting nearer the time when most old material will have been found. Relatives have a lot to deal with when people pass on and will likely in most cases throw material like this away (they likely have nothing to play this stuff on and won't know it's potential significance).
Has anyone ever thought (I guess the BFI or BBC) to run a Freepost service, where you could just box up the material and stick a Freepost address on it? I guess this would need some level of advertising, also something so they don't just get inundated with 90's VHS's. Wonder how pricey that would be to run such a thing.
Or has this been tried elsewhere in the world anyone knows of?
Seems like we are close to losing potentially lots of material in the next few years to landfill.
missing radio is far more likely to turn up as reel to reel audio recorders were common in the early 70s to a lot of children even, and to olders before that, hence why audio to all Dr Whos exists, video recorders didnt become common to the mid-1980s even then the early 1980s home VHS was only 288 lines rather than 576. my 1980 VHS recordings of Not The Nine O'clock news show this when converted to 576. We shall see in all the Top20 shows turn up as they were recorded by lots of children at the time.
This thread is way too negative. Items are turning up all the time, although maybe you have to be actively engaged in hunting for recordings, to fully appreciate just how much does turn up.
However, every time anything remotely interesting comes my way, it comes with a strict condition: no sharing, no uploading. There is much more about than meets the eye.
Of course, if A, B and C are all old-radio collectors, then A will have items B doesn't have, and C will have items from shows A has never even heard of, but which C has no intention of letting B know about! And broadcaster X will keep getting YouTube to clamp down on the activities of A and B, who want to share material more widely, while C is busy grabbing everything he can so that A and B can never have it.
And you probably think I'm joking!
The fact is, some collectors really are. Collectors. They collect. Period. Many collectors are happy to share, but many are not. If you look at how much is in circulation, you've got to wonder how much is not, but is out there, yet only a handful of people know it.
It isn't that material does not turn up, it's that when it does it sometimes (not always, but some of the time) falls into the wrong hands, and is never seen again.
1. If you want to preserve digital files, upload them to the Internet Archive at Archive.org where they will be preserved permanently. The BBC Sound Archives rejects items more often than not, but Archive.org never rejects an upload. If they eventually have to take it off display, it will still exist in their storage somewhere.
2. If you want to preserve real items, e.g. video tapes, leave them as a gift in your Will. Donate them to Kaleidoscope now, or leave your entire collection as a bequest to the British Library in London, which accepts pretty much anything that can be catalogued. It has a large collection of, for example, old reel to reel audio tapes, donated over the past 25 years, and still has the equipment to digitise these tapes. The British Library actually stores physically a huge quantity of tapes donated by the BBC, when the old reels in the BBC Sound Archive were converted to digital formats. 'Library' should not be misunderstood as meaning only books - go take a look at the BL's online catalogue to get an idea of how broad the scope of their collections are.