Film Archives Being Eaten Away; Would Be Nice If People Could Make Copies To Preserve

from the but-would-that-be-'theft'? dept

Sneeje points us to a recent BBC article about how many old films are being literally eaten up by fungus, such that important elements of our history are being deleted via the "archival" process. Of course, if this content was digitized and allowed to be shared, this wouldn't be a problem, as there would be more and more copies available, rather than relying on a single point of failure made up of film with a gel coating that happens to be "ideal food for fungi like Aspergillus and Penicillium."

Filed Under: film, fungi

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  1. icon
    Suzanne Lainson (profile), 15 Sep 2010 @ 4:12pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Preservation is costly

    If you father had let his personal papers's content be known to the public and allowed people to copy them, as he was accruing them, then you wouldn't have to worry about archiving it after his death. Copies of his papers would have already been out there.

    His stuff was on display in his basement. He proudly showed it off to visitors. But as far as I know, no one volunteered to come in to physically copy everything he owned. We had old newspapers articles, old photos, old pamphlets, etc. There may be copies spread out in various people's personal collections, but we had a collection already accumulated which none of us knew what to do with. I have no space in my condo. My daughters went through everything and kept what they wanted. Everything else was trashed. Sadly. I would have loved to have found a home for it all, but didn't have one available.

    Is there a group of people volunteering to copy old photos, papers, and movies of everyone who has them? If so, yes, I think we can make a permanent record of every artifact in this culture. But right now, we have more decaying items that need copying than we have the manpower to do it.

    All I am saying is that there is stuff being trashed that might someday have historical value but isn't being saved. And not because of copyright issues.

    And the reason I say this is that if you want to archive everything, there are more problems than just copyright. Even if there aren't copyright issues, lots of stuff isn't going to be saved. You need to deal with that issue, too.

    People who might one day become famous have trashed early writings/art/etc. because no one knows they might be worth something someday. Painters who are short on canvas paint over their paintings, so those get lost.

    I have a painting that I saved from my father's house which turns out is worth about $15,000 because I looked up the artist's signature. But the paint is starting to chip off. I'm not sure what to do about that. I know there are art restorers, but how do I get the painting to one of them without further damage?

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