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Re-Wired: The Obsolescence of Wire Recordings in Audio Archiving

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Yle - Finnish Broadcasting Company
Presentation type: 
spoken paper
27 Sept Sunday
Start time: 
1 530
Belvedere 1

Every now and then Yle Archives (The Archives of Finnish Broadcasting Company) is approached by people in possession of home recordings of early Finnish radio broadcasts. As the archiving of Finnish national radio broadcasts has been far from exhaustive for various reasons in the first four decades of company’s activity starting from 1926, we aim to add these recordings to Yle Archive’s audio collections whenever the content and technical conditions meet the criteria of re-usability and broadcasting.
One of the most obsolete submissions so far is a home recording collection submitted by a private person containing some 250 wire recordings from the first half of the 1950’s. Magnetic wire recording was one of the first consumer-targeted home recording technique for radio broadcasts emerging in the 1940’s flourishing shortly before the takeover of magnetic tape in the 1950’s.
In my paper, I will demonstrate the auditive features of wire recording, describe the specific Yle’s project at hand including the carriers and the task of renovating the playback recorder for digitization and draw conclusions based on experiences from the ongoing project.