VCRs were once prized for their ability to allow amateurs to create material records of ephemeral television broadcasts. But what value do amateur video-recordings of television have at their late stage of obsolescence? This article outlines some of the discursive parameters surrounding the perceived use-value of amateur video-recordings of television, drawing on case studies of video collection projects that are divided on the question of whether amateur television video-recordings continue to have merit. It argues that both advocates and detractors of videocassette recordings of television tend to rely on place-based heritage discourses in order to value or vilify them.

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Netherlands Institute for Sound and Vision
VIEW Journal

VanderBurgh, Jennifer. (2019). Grounding TV’s Material Heritage: Place-based Projects That Value or Vilify Amateur Videocassette Recordings of Television. VIEW Journal, 8(15), 59–78. doi:10.18146/2213-0969.2019.jethc165