Monday, April 13, 2009

This digital collection of audio cassettes was put together by German graffiti crew Neckcns, who have a surprisingly strong web presence. Selection principles can be inferred from their "About Tapedeck" page, with the site focused on showing "the amazing beauty…(sometimes) weirdness…and amazing range of designs" in audio tapes. Combined with the webmasters' graffiti art background, I don't think it's a stretch to say that this site's intended audience is artists and designers. In past posts, I think I've tended to label some sites as intended for graphic designers, when it was more that they scanned pretty objects without labeling them properly. I think this site is successfully intended for designers/art people by being easy to browse, with a real emphasis on the visual (Despite the Google ads).

There's a fairly consistent naming system—all names contain the tape's brand, line, and amount of minutes, while some have info about the date the picture of the tape was taken. I thought it was funny that all names ended with "audio cassette tape". There's no metadata fields available to the user, but you can browse the collection by brand, playing time, or tape quality (though only one at a time).

The tapes are photographed rather than scanned, with images at 96ppi, with 800 pixels on their longest edge. Their choice to closely crop the images unifies the collection, and also seems to help me overlook when an image is slightly out of focus, which I guess is good for presentation, but bad for preservation. The close cropping and similar shape of all the tapes makes the collection quite adaptable for new uses. It would be nice to know about their choices for which side of a tape was photographed, and also if they had a policy on rewinding or cleaning tapes beforehand (though it looks like they didn't).

There's no rights information given, and I'm not sure manufacturers were copyrighting their tape art, but it doesn't seem quite right that the webmasters posted a copyright for "all content…except where stated otherwise." That said, they seem to be supportive of people using images from their collection, such as this video, or this mixtape program.

No comments:

Post a Comment