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Preserving analog films and music at the Library of Congress

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The Quotidian Record
The Quotidian Record

Libraries preserve and circulate more than just books, and the Library of Congress is no exception. Glenn Fleishman tours the Library's Packard campus in Virginia, where films, records, and other audiovisual materials are stored, maintained, made available to researchers, and slowly but surely digitized, to preserve their contents long after their physical forms completely degrade. In most cases, the transfer to digital is the last time these filmstrips and phonographs will ever be played. In a quirk of the law, much of the audio, including recordings more than a century old, is still under copyright.