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The basic premise behind the "Yesteryear" channel is pretty simple. Each day the "Yesteryear" channel would choose a day in history and a television channel that existed at this time and broadcast the identical content of that channel from the day.
So you could check your TV Guide and on the Yesteryear
Channel it might say, "Today on Yesteryear: NBC from Thursday, August 3rd, 1977" and you could flip on the channel and for as long as you cared to you'd be watching the same shows that people who tuned into NBC on Thursday, August 3rd, 1977 saw.
Each day they could choose a different date and channel.
They could have theme weeks...
Like viewer request week where each day the viewers vote on the day in history and the channel that they would like to see.
They could do a whole week of ABC during the 1976 Olympics, if they so choose.
They could have a week of really obscure days in history where hardly anyone watched TV just so you can see what everyone missed that day.
I hope I've conveyed the point clearly enough.
P.S.: Please don't add a link to Nick at Nite! This is different.
The Sledge Hammer! Arsenal
All things Sledge... [dgeiser13, Jan 26 2001]
||This would be a great idea, for
a few reasons.
||The first would be simple
nostalgia. It would be fun to
watch a day from, say, 1979 and
be transported back to the
context of the era. "Hey, I
remember that show! And that
stupid laundry detergent ad!"
||Historians often lament that
history records important
events, but seldom give us a
feeling of what life was really
like at various points in time.
This idea would help address
this problem (I'm sure historians
already have access to these
archives, but it would be nice
for the rest of us to have
them, too). I believe the
Museum of Television and Radio
(New York and Los Angeles)
allows you to do this (you can
watch, for example, an episode
of the Muppet Show from some
point in history), but they
preserve the television show
out of context, which seems a
little less useful.
||The big problems you're going
to run into will be
localization, scarcity of
archives, and dead media.
||Which NBC affiliate's
programming are you going to
select? You could just show the
prime time television, but I
think advertising and news
programs have been localized
for some time.
||Most broadcasters didn't keep
archives, and didn't even
record live broadcasts at all
until the 40's, because of the
cost associated with the
technology and storage of the
media. Even after
recording become standard
practice, archives were not by
any means permanent. Ask any
"Doctor Who" fan about the
tapes that were destroyed by
the BBC. It's only become
realistic to consider permanent
archiving of all broadcasts in
the last few years.
||The last problem is that video
recording technology suffers
from rapid obsolescence. Even
if you do manage to dig up a
Silvaphone recording from the
1930s, where are you going to
find a working player? NASA has
apparently lost data from the
Voyager missions due to this
||Not to mention the licensing
||So, it's a good idea, but
||Not to be a downer, because I think this is a good idea, although I agree with Francois - unworkable....I wonder how many people would watch a day in history comprised mainly of a test pattern (remember those) and programming that didn't start until late afternoon or evening. Today's viewers probably wouldn't put up with TV that only broadcast 3 or 4 hours a night.
||Of course everyone's reservations about this idea have validity. I didn't think this idea would ever come come into being any more than Nail-On Contact Lenses. -)
I just thought maybe we could all sit back and revel in the idea of it. All of the positive things that could come from being able to plop down in a chair and watch "Battle of the Network Superstars" and some dude complaing about "He can't believe he ate the whole thing" instead of all the logistical issues involved in bringing this idea to fruition.
||I think the best way to make this work will be to send a sensitive receiver away from earth faster than the speed of light to the point those old transmissions have reached.
||Much of the idea COULD be implemented. Why not rebroadcast the 1976 Olympics? I know I'd watch at least some of it. In terms of cost -- Warner Bros, Viacom, Sony et al certainly have some archives sitting around collecting dust.
||Modern commercials could be plugged into places where the old cigarette and booze ads occurred (and there were plenty of those slots), but it would be cool to leave classic commercials as well -- that's something Nick at Nite does not do.
||'Course this isn't really your "full day" concept, is it? Nevertheless, I like the idea.
||It's a nice idea but I suspect the horrific reality of just how pants most TV programmes were, would probably kill the idea stone dead after a short while, even if it was workable.
No, wait. What am I saying? Most TV is *still* pants but it doesn't stop millions of people (myself included) from watching it. Go for it!
||This idea will be more workable in about 30 years.
With the digital archiving used today, you'll be able to pull anything you need from the last 40 years or so.
Plus you could have Saturday and Sunday broadcasts as "best of" certain days prior to 1990. Say one Saturday you could run material from July 8, 1968...whatever was available. Old shows, newsreels, commericials, whatever.
But during the week, it would be shows from the 90's, 2000
s, 2010's and 20's. Those would appeal most to audiences because of the nostalgia factor.
You could sindicate the channel and run a local station's material on any given day.
So don't rule it out just yet. Just give technology some time to make it workable.
||The real concept here is that we (random individuals) should be archiving random snapshots of media (a day of TV, a week of radio, a Web site snapshot) into relatively hard media. In the future, these recordings will possibly be valuable and probably be entertaining.
||Everybody would tape the X-files and none of them would be worth anything...