The writings of the German scholar Wolfgang Ernst have become increasingly influential within media archaeology in recent years. His work adopts a strongly techno-centric approach and identifies archives as important study centres. Paradoxically, practical archival evidence is sometimes lacking within Ernst’s output. This paper uses evidence from a recent television archive project to examine aspects of Ernst’s approach. This exercise sought to uncover source material relating to a Northern Irish current affairs series, Counterpoint (1978-96), which had been badly affected by videotape wiping. Its methodology utilised a strongly materialistic approach to successfully recover ‘lost’ archival artefacts.

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Keywords media archaeology, Wolfgang Ernst, Northern Ireland, missing programmes, archival studies, Counterpoint, Ulster Television (UTV)
Publisher Netherlands Institute for Sound and Vision
Journal VIEW Journal
Rights Each article is copyrighted © by its author(s) and is published under license from the author(s). When a paper is accepted for publication, authors will be requested to agree with the Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Netherlands License.
Note VIEW Journal of European Television History and Culture; Vol 4, No 7 (2015): Archaeologies of Tele-Visions and -Realities; 11-20
Griffin, Ken. (2015). The Lessons of Counterpoint: Ernst’s Media Archaeology and Practical Archival Research. VIEW Journal, 4(7), 11–20.

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