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‘There’s no back-up copy’

Michael McLaren

Dr Michelle Arrow, Associate Professor Department of Modern History, Politics and International Relations Macquarie University, joins Michael with a dire warning that Australian treasures are on the brink of destruction.

 

When the DVD format was introduced, the VCR quickly became obsolete which made all of those VHS tapes, which were lovingly compiled, become unplayable virtually overnight.

 

‘This is the dilemma that faces the National Archives of Australia. It is stuck, metaphorically, in the VHS era, and without an urgent injection of funds, it will be trapped there’, writes Dr Arrow.

 

‘It has a vast collection of historical records: not just documents and files, but tape recordings, films, and television programs. And much of it is on the brink of destruction.’

 

‘If rapid action is not taken to convert all the archives’ audio visual material to secure, digital formats, in 2025, it will topple off what archivists call the “digital cliff”. A combination of deterioration and outmoded technology will conspire to destroy it.’

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Michael McLaren
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