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IBC to Honor International Olympic Committee

LONDON – Used to being the one who hands out the gold medal, the International Olympic Committee is set to receive an award of its own at IBC2015 for its conservation and management its audiovisual archive of documents from past Olympic events.

Technicians examine transparencies from the photographic archive prior to conservation © CIO/Jean-Louis Strangis

The IOC has an archive featuring 2,000 hours of film, 33,000 hours of video, 8,500 hours of audio and more than 500,000 photographs dating back to the first modern day Olympics in 1896. According to IOC’s archivists, within a few years 50 percent of videos would be unplayable, 20 percent of the faded photographs would be unusable, and there would be no audio players available for a majority of the collection.

With the implementation of the Patrimonial Assets Management program and work from up to 40 specialists, the project took seven years of a combined 100,000 total work hours to cataloguing, indexing, scanning, digital cleaning and restoration.

 “This project is very important for two reasons,” said Michael Lumley, chair of the IBC Awards panel. “First, it ensures that more than a century of Olympic history is preserved for the future. But perhaps even more important, it draws the industry’s focus on a subject is all too easy to ignore.”

“Broadcasters, production companies and anyone with an audiovisual archive can look to the IOC’s Patrimonial Asset Management project to see a model of conservation and access,” Lumley continued. “IBC is pleased to be able to draw attention to this issue through this award, as well as recognizing the excellent work the IOC is undertaking.”

IBC2015 takes place from Sept. 10-15 in Amsterdam.