The ARSC Guide to Audio Preservation is a practical introduction to caring for and preserving audio collections. It is aimed at individuals and institutions that have recorded sound collections but lack the expertise in one or more areas to preserve them.
Our audio legacy is at serious risk because of media deterioration, technological obsolescence, and, often, lack of accessibility. This legacy is remarkable in its diversity, ranging from wax cylinders of extinct Native American languages to tapes of local radio broadcasts, naturalists’ and ethnographers’ field recordings, small independent record company releases, and much more. Saving this irreplaceable treasure demands the joint effort of libraries, archives, museums, local history repositories, corporations, and individuals. But for many institutions, the question is “Where to begin?” This guide addresses that question.
Nine chapters, contributed by a range of experts, cover audio conservation and preservation, recorded sound formats and their associated risks, appraisal, related copyright issues, and disaster preparedness. The guide also offers advice on making informed decisions about digitization, as well as strategies for managing digital content. An appendix to the guide focuses on fair use and sound recordings.