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Woman records news on 140,000 VHS tapes

Posted on Wednesday, 27 November, 2013 | Comment icon 11 comments

The tapes contained news reports spanning several decades. Image Credit: CC BY-SA 3.0 Michiel1972

Marion Stokes took it upon herself to single-handedly record over 35 years worth of news from the TV.

Between 1977 and 2012 Marion spent a great deal of her time recording news reports from network, local and cable news stations. When the first 24-hour news channels aired she began to record them in their entirety as well, sometimes using up to 8 video recorders simultaneously.

To make sure that she didn't miss anything Marion would put a 6-hour tape in each of the machines last thing at night and would get up first thing in the morning to change them. When she was on holiday she'd get someone else to do it for her and when she became too old to keep up with the schedule she appointed someone else to do it in her stead.

Sadly, Marion died in 2012 following a battle with lung disease. She left behind a legacy of 140,000 VHS tapes filled with news recordings and thankfully her efforts had not been in vain.

News archivists are now seeking to acquire Marion's entire collection so that the reports can be placed in a viewable archive for future generations. "Some local news will be lost forever," said librarian Roger Macdonald. "But who knows, because there may be other Marion Stokeses out there who had that similar passion."

Source: Fast Company | Comments (11)

Tags: News, Video, VHS

Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #2 Posted by Blueguardian on 27 November, 2013, 13:36
( The article above).
Comment icon #3 Posted by Junior Chubb on 27 November, 2013, 14:33
That will teach me to read the article fully before posting...
Comment icon #4 Posted by pallidin on 27 November, 2013, 19:49
Wow. That's incredible. I can see why the collection would be sought by archivist or such.
Comment icon #5 Posted by pallidin on 27 November, 2013, 20:04
Yeah, I've done that myself a few times as well...
Comment icon #6 Posted by Technocrat on 28 November, 2013, 0:34
Comment icon #7 Posted by Blueguardian on 28 November, 2013, 2:06
I've done it on a few occasions too. Happens to everyone.
Comment icon #8 Posted by stevemagegod on 28 November, 2013, 4:16
I have a DVR set and my parents always record the news. Channel 4,6 etc., Its not a passion we just set the record button to everyday 24 hours 7 days a week lol. I usually just end up deleting them because we get around 40+ DVR events which takes up unnecessary space......
Comment icon #9 Posted by Kelevra on 28 November, 2013, 5:33
Wow, bet shes glad she didn't side with Beta-max
Comment icon #10 Posted by highdesert50 on 28 November, 2013, 12:55
Interesting how an obsessive-compulsive disorder, which is characterized by intrusive thoughts which increase anxiety and by repetitive or ritualistic actions which decrease anxiety, can become a useful asset. I suppose it will require another team of obsessive-compulsives to convert the tapes to digital media.
Comment icon #11 Posted by Mark56 on 8 December, 2013, 4:54
I've always wished that I could 've recorded TV commercials over the last 30 or 40 years. I've always thought that TV commercials tell a lot about the society you live in.

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