As technology changes, it starts to fade from the memories of those who knew it so well and never even reaches the newer generations. Soon, we’ll have to explain a litany of common phrases to the new generation that will be obsolete such as why we “hang up” the phone, why we “roll down” the car window, and why we “tune-in” to listen to something. We’ll have to explain why we “cc” someone on an e-mail (carbon copy), what it means when someone sounds like a broken record, and well as detail the complicated relationship between an audio cassette tape and a pencil eraser.
Even editing terms that we use everyday at the studio come from back in the film days when one would “cut” film and store pieces in physical “bins” which, to the digital generations, are just folders. We also “film” or “tape” events which refers to the media storage devices that were being recorded on. Maybe one day in the future we’ll say we have to go “SD card” an event? Doesn’t really have the same ring to it…
“Be kind, please rewind” has quickly been added to the list with the fall of VHS and video stores, one of which our studio currently occupies. Have you ever noticed that we have two video return slots on either side of our doors? While it is now used for mail or DVDs, its original purpose was to return your favorite 90’s movies after hours so you wouldn’t be hit with a late fee. With an in-house staff of local-grown friends, we all have fond memories of renting, watching, and rewinding our favorite flicks from the late Massive Video. NCTV is honored to keep the memory of Massive Video alive with our studio, which is dedicated to teaching the same community how to create their own awesome videos!
While VHS tapes are still (sort of) relevant (since they are likely to hold our home movies or favorite ice skating competitions that we recorded off of TV, commercials and all), let’s take a quick look back at their 20-year run in our homes and in our hearts!
1975: Sony released the Betamax VCR, the main competition of the soon-to-be VHS industry.
1976: Universal City Studios and the Walt Disney Company sued Sony stating that the ability to record television was a violation of copyright and wanted the VCR to be impounded as a “tool of piracy” (www.wipo.int).
1977: VHS players and tapes had their debut in the US on June 4, 1977. These expensive little machines had twice the capacity of their Betamax predecessors and were introduced by JVC.
1978: VHS tapes grew in popularity rapidly, party in thanks to their decision not to make their product proprietary when they competitor (Sony Betamax) did. This allowed other companies to make VHS tapes and players/recorders less expensively than Betamax.
1980’s: VHS rental shops started cropping up all over the place which gave the consumer a cheaper alternative to purchasing tapes of their favorite films.
1984: Supreme Court ruled that recording TV shows at home for a noncommercial purpose was “fair use” and completely legal.
1997: The DVD was introduced to the market, eventually followed by its HD counterpart, Blu-ray.
2002: DVD player sales surpassed VHS recorder sales.
2008: The founding company, JVC, produced its last VHS only player.
In an effort to save your memories that originate on VHS tapes, we're happy to help transfer VHS to DVD at our studio. We charge $10/tape and have a $5 discount if you provide blank DVD-R disks (one per VHS) and a $5 discount if you physically put in the time to transfer over the tape. In case you missed it, that means it would be FREE if you bring your own DVD-R's, press the buttons, and wait for the transfer to happen (in real time). To protect the copyright of others, we will only allow the use of our equipment for home movies and will NOT copy commercial tapes.
For more info, contact us!
Castonguay, S. (2006, November). World Intellectual Property Organization. Retrieved April 13, 2016, from http://www.wipo.int/wipo_magazine/en/2006/06/article_0003.html
Shpak, S. (n.d.). History of the VHS Tape. Retrieved April 13, 2016, from http://www.ehow.com/facts_4870143_history-vhs-tape.html