Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
h a l f b a k e r y
"Bun is such a sad word, is it not?" -- Watt, "Waiting for Godot"

idea: add, search, annotate, link, view, overview, recent, by name, random

meta: news, help, about, links, report a problem

account: browse anonymously, or get an account and write.

user:
pass:
register,


                     

The "TV of Yesteryear" Channel

Watch TV from days and channels gone by.
  (+6, -1)
(+6, -1)
  [vote for,
against]

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.

dgeiser13, Jan 26 2001

The Sledge Hammer! Arsenal http://www.phrank.com/sh/
All things Sledge... [dgeiser13, Jan 26 2001]

[link]






       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 problem.   

       Not to mention the licensing problems.   

       So, it's a good idea, but probably unworkable.
francois, Jan 26 2001
  

       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.
chili2k, Jan 26 2001
  

       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.
dgeiser13, Jan 26 2001
  

       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.
centauri, Jan 26 2001
  

       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.
danrue, Jan 26 2001
  

       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!
DrBob, Feb 01 2001
  

       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.
rcornell, Mar 10 2001
  

       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.
egnor, Mar 10 2001
  

       Everybody would tape the X-files and none of them would be worth anything...
StarChaser, Apr 11 2001
  
      
[annotate]
  


 

back: main index

business  computer  culture  fashion  food  halfbakery  home  other  product  public  science  sport  vehicle