RTE: Opening Up Our Archives


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Presentation by Liam Wylie (RTE) at the NECS Conference 2012 in Lisbon, Portugal, in the panel 'Unstable Histories: The Problem of Seeing and Understanding 'Old' Television in the Digital Age'.

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  • Renamed presentationBackground
  • TV50Opening night television - 1 stations on air for 4 hoursLoads of choice today 24 hour - hundreds of channels So when talking about access it is good to reflect on what was available 50 years ago.
  • This is Dana.Anyone know who Dana is? Dana was Ireland’s first winner of the Eurovision song contest in Amsterdam in 1970.Dana is going to appear as an example of how we all now have certain expectations about information and how we receive it.Dana here is from an age when television was very much ephemeral.More of Dana later.Digital technology allows us all to do so much. But it also has created EXPECTATION
  • This is what we as consumers of content expect now.Many of you here may already be bored with me and are browsing as I speak. We have so much choice.
  • Audiovisual recordings have the potential to help us understand our past. Television in particular has slowly gained a cultural recognition that has placed a new significance on the expanding archive collections of broadcasters.A growth in the recognition of the cultural value of audiovisual records plus the development of new technology has increased the expectation that the collections of broadcasters should be publicly accessible. Word of warning here. What are broadcast archives?Primary function is to service programme makers.In Ireland – no national audiovisual archive. RTE has the largest audiovisual collection in the country.Public funding should lead to public access.
  • RTÉ is a small broadcaster in European terms and has been slower in moving to full digital production.Part of production is now digital.These last two points I would like to come back to
  • Archive is seen on radio and television programmes.We have the RTÉ PlayerRTÉ Player - 21 day playback Archive specific As a pilot project entire programmes from the RTÉ Archives were made available on the RTÉ Player
  • 100,000 images online
  • EUscreen you know about
  • Providing access through curated exhibitions Looking at other ways to increase access.Who wants access to this content?How content is received is constantly being fragmented. Remember the slide showing first night of TV. 1 TV station 1 radio station.Today heading towards 50% of RTE content is consumed/viewed on platforms other than traditional television. Makes the question of who wants access to this material critical and warrants some research?
  • So by now I hope what I have showed is that Broadcast Archives have great content.On the whole especially those who receive public funding want to open up their collections.Huge challenges.Back to Dana. Someone may already have done some research on Dana while I have been speaking.If you are interested in Dana and let us say specifically Dana winning the Eurovision song contest in 1970 and you want to see it then what are you going to do?
  • You go here and watch a clip.YouTube is fantastic but very frustrating for those of us who work with audiovisual archives.The clips here have all been copied and uploaded illegally. The rights will be with the host broadcaster in the Netherlands.The picture and audio quality will vary.Little or no context provided with any clip BUT often a lot of comment.Archives cannot operate this way. Need to clear any rights that are in a clip.Need to keep a preservation copy – the best possible copy so future generations can enjoy it.AND we all now know we need to provide access to this type of material
  • There is no point in trying to compete with YouTube. We will not win.We have to offer something different. Show clip.As far as I know this clip is not onYou Tube YET!Project like Euscreen and those of us who are publishing content from our archives are providing context to our content.And hopefully delivering a good quality image as well. Dana teenage winner from Derry in northern Ireland two years into the troubles. 2 airports two welcomes.
  • Tremendous emphasis on providing access to audiovisual collections. There is however a major funding gap.Projects like Euscreen provide some funding small funding to help make content available. New records are created. In our case video, audio and images are digitsed for and THIS IS THE IMPORTANT BIT PUBLICATION.There is no funding that I know of to help with digitisation for preservation. In a peculiar way projects like EUscreen may actually be taking away from the argument for the need to help with preservation. Europe is saying that it is up to each national government or agency to fund digitisation.We can see it you have published it therefore it must be ok? Copyright and other rights – help with the cost of making content available?
  • So how do we get DANA digital or properly digital? First clip is on film – To sum up. There is recognition for audiovisual archive content. Public Service Broadcasters like RTÉ want to make more content available. The challenge is how do broadcasters answer the demand for content from outside there main clients the programme makers?How do we fulfil a public service remit and at the same time maintain our own brand and not take away from the possibility of monetising content from our collections? Will you pay something for access?Euscreen and Europeana are worthy projects and deserve the support of broadcaster and heritage archives and institutions.If there was a weighing scales preservation access at the moment the weights are very much on the access side.Need to address the funding gap and help make content available.I would encourage academics interested in broadcast archive collections to not just write about the content but the context that content exists in today.DanaRosemary Scallon European MP in 2001Last year ran for election for Irish president.
  • RTE: Opening Up Our Archives

    1. 1. Understanding the Problem of Seeing “Old” Television in the Digital Age Liam Wylie
    2. 2. TV50
    3. 3. Digital Age
    4. 4. ExpectationThat we should be able to get content anywhere, at anytime on numerous devices and free of charge.
    5. 5. Broadcast ArchivesBroadcast Media and Cultural Recognition + New Technology = Should be Available to the Public
    6. 6. RTÉ Opening Up Our ArchivesOpening up RTÉ Archives is a commitment that presentschallenges.Preservation for ‘born digital’ material will require the developmentof a system that will allow the capture of all content to a digitalarchive.Digital preservation for legacy archive poses a major financialchallenge. At the moment most likely to happen on a demand ledor project basis where funding is available.Rights clearance and management will be required to help makematerial accessible.
    7. 7. RTÉ Player
    8. 8. Photographs
    9. 9. EUscreen
    10. 10. Radio
    11. 11. Remember Me?
    12. 12. Google Dana
    13. 13. YouTube Dana
    14. 14. Dana Comes Home
    15. 15. Where is the help?
    16. 16. Recognise Me?