IASA-TC 06 Guidelines for the Preservation of Video Recordings


Archives hold original video recordings in a range of types, from media-dependent, carrier-based analog videotapes to computer-file-based digital recordings.  The appropriate preservation treatments for this array reflect the variation in the source recordings.  For analog videotapes, for example, digitisation is called for.  Meanwhile, examples of digital file-based recording may require rewrapping into a fresh file "wrapper" or a combination of digital transcoding and rewrapping.

When complete, IASA-TC 06 will cover the full range of topics in the preceding paragraph, as well as providing advice on shooting ethnographic, documentary, and oral history video footage in a manner that maximizes its "preserve-ability."

IASA-TC 06 is being disseminated in phases.  At a high level, there are two dissemination phases:

  1. Initial version, publicly accessible in early 2018: focus on the preservation of video recordings on conventional carriers. For the most part, this means the digitization of analog videotapes, but it also encompasses the transfer of content from some types of digital videotapes.
  2. Expanded version, access planned for in 2019: discussion of the preservation of digital-file-based video formats and the transfer of digitally encoded recordings in videotape form (which may entail transcoding and/or rewrapping).  Additional sections are anticipated that pertain to metadata and the production of new recordings in preservable formats.

This initial presentation on the IASA website is for comment and will support future revisions and improvements.  Readers are asked to send notes to the chair of the IASA Technical Committee: Lars Gaustad (lars.gaustad@nb.no).  Lars will share them with the guideline's authors and, from time to time, the authors will summarize the comments together with their responses either via the IASA blog (www.iasa-web.org/blog) or one of the forums (e.g. www.iasa-web.org/forums/public-forums/technical-issues).

Overall table of contents

Version of 23 December 2017, checked 4 January 2018

A.  Front Matter, Introduction
(filename IASA-TC_06-A_[date])
 -     Front matter
A.1    Introduction

B.  Video Signal, Preservation Concepts, and Target Formats
(filename IASA-TC_06-B_[date])
B.1    The Video Signal and Bitstreams: Format and Features
B.2     Preservable Objects and the Selection of Formats for Preservation
B.3    Target Formats for Video Recordings to be Digitised "as Video" in Real Time

B-App.  Appendixes to section B.3
(filename IASA-TC_06-B-app_[date])
B.3   Appendix part 1.    Summary Target Format Comparison Table (typing paper sheets)
B.3   Appendix part 2.    Full Detail Target Format Comparison Table (large sheet version)
•    Footnotes to the Full Detail Target Format Comparison Table (typing paper sheets)
B.3   Appendix part 3.    Full Detail Target Format Comparison Table (subdivided version, typing paper sheets)

C.  Video Carriers and Signal Extraction (Replay/Playback)
(filename IASA-TC_06-C_[date])
C.1     Introduction to Carriers: Assessment, Preparation, and Cleaning
C.2      Quadruplex 2-inch Reels (future offering)
C.3      EIAJ and Sony CV ½-inch Open Reel Videotapes
C.4      1-inch Helical-Scan Open Reel Videotapes (types A, B, C)
C.5    U-matic ¾-inch Videocassettes
C.6     ½-inch Analogue Consumer and Semi-Professional Videocassettes
C.7    Betacam ½-inch Professional Videocassette Family

D.  Planning, Setup, and Workflows for Video Digitisation
(filename IASA-TC_06-D_[date])
D.1     Planning, Setup, and Workflows for Video Digitisation

E.  Bibliography
(filename IASA-TC_06-E_[date])
E.1.1      General bibliography of works cited and selected additional works
E.1.2      Selected glossaries
E.1.3      Wikipedia Articles