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Re: [ARSCLIST] PreRecorded Tape Duplicators

Tom Fine wrote:

PS -- one interesting topic for a study on taping and copyrights might be to look at how advertising treated the taping of copyright material over the years. Early Ampex literature emphasized using microphones to tape Little Johnny's recital and made mention of taping radio programs and records.

But Wilcox-Gay Recordio home disc recorders in the 40s, and Revere tape recorders in the 50s, had models with built-in radio tuners. No ambiguity here!
By the 1980's, TDK used to run ads on The King Biscuit Flower Hour and other radio shows featuring a guy who had a huge LP collection "but I only play them once," to tape onto a TDK SA cassette that was his prime playback medium.

This was parallel to the introduction of the VCR with built-in TV tuners and timers.
But by the end of the cassette era, everyone talked freely about handing out "mix tapes" and "giving your buddies tapes" of favorite albums.

And the RIAA and IFPI answered with a graphic of a cassette turned into a skull & crossbones, with a phrase like Home Taping Kills Music.
Ads for blank cassettes and cassette decks rarely if ever featured the act of recording a live event.

You mean like Grateful Dead concerts?!

I wonder if all of this reflected the public's declining respect for copyright or if it fed it, and also if it fed the reaction of copyright holders, which was to create the current draconian and non-standard US copyright system? -- Tom Fine

This is a very interesting observation. Actually my interpolations answered that! The RIAA never really got their shorts in a knot until the cassette recorder got into the hands of every teenager. Prior to that most ordinary people were too fumblethumbs to thread tape recorders or cut discs, but the cassette was too easy. Same with VCRs vs. open reel VTRs. And the blank cassettes were so much cheaper than LPs or pre-recorded tapes, whereas open reels and blank discs were expensive enough that you might as well buy the record. Prior to the Disney Universal vs. Sony Betamax case and the RIAA anti home taping promotions the industry mainly objected to the professional piracy, such as in the early 1950s when there were pirate jazz 78 reissues (one of the labels was called Jolly Roger), a ring of trading Met opera broadcasts, and in the 70s when bootleg concert LPs and counterfeit cassettes abounded. But no doubt that some of the ads you describe might have been referenced in some of the court cases, especially the Sony vs Disney case.

Mike Biel mbiel@xxxxxxxxx

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