Broadcast Archives: Preserving the Future
Richard Wright , BBC, United Kingdom

Short Paper: Short Paper 4: Building a New Culture

The audio-visual heritage of the 20th Century is in European public service broadcast archives. Millions of hours of analogue media now require conversion to new, digital, formats, to be preserved and to be usable by current technology. The funding of this preservation work will be the largest single investment ever made, for a single purpose, in these diverse collections. A key issue is making the best return on this investment, in terms not just of preserving the material, but rather making as available and usable as possible. The key technology for access is, broadly, web technology: for desktop access to catalogues and browse-quality content, and for e-commerce. This presentation will show how archive preservation work can be organised to provide:

  • improved access and usage
  • minimum future preservation costs
  • preservation of the future use of the content

These improvements can be obtained within the same broad funding levels as conventional 'tape-copying' projects, as established by PRESTO, an EC-sponsored project. PRESTO is headed by BBC Information and Archives, together with the French Institute National d'la Audiovisuel, and the Italian broadcaster RAI, and with seven technical partners and cooperation from a further seven national broadcast archives.


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Politecnico di Milano

Published: 01/09/01
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