As technology changes, don't trash those old video tapes

To solve any problem, here are three questions to ask yourself: First, what could I do? Second, what could I read? And third, who could I ask?


– Jim Rohn


Once again I asked and you answered.

So let me thank all of you who responded to my question last week about what to do with all those old videocassette tapes of movies, TV shows and ballgames that are clogging my closet and apparently your closets, too. It’s nice to know I’m not alone.

Not only did many of you write or call to confess you have a similar problem, most of you admitted to the same failing: We saved all these tapes, yet rarely watch them.

And now the technology has changed, and we have a dilemma: Convert it to the next level of moving image storage, or throw it away.

Lloyd Creech, of North Augusta, suggested I put my videocassettes on eBay “… or donate them, if you donate them you can deduct them,” he wrote.

Daniel Morris  suggested I just bite the bullet and copy the older videocassette technology to DVDs.

“Elgato makes a kit that uses your VHS player and your computer with a DVD burner to convert analog VHS to digital DVD,” he said. “It’s called Video Capture. I bought the kit that hooks directly to my MacBook. I’m a computer novice so, If I say it’s an easy program to use. It is!”

Some of you sensed that I just might throw all the old stuff out. Melanie Stark said I shouldn’t.

“I work for Lynndale Inc.,” she wrote. “We work with adults with disabilities. We do furniture repair, packaging, and job skills training. We also have a green house.

"Occasionally, we like to play games and watch movies. In our classrooms, we have several VHS players. We have a good number of people who are 50-plus, and I know they love older movies. If you would like to donate your movies to Lynndale, you are welcome to give us a call.”

I was also advised that Friends of the Library at the Columbia County Library, Evans, accepts donations of VCR tapes in its used book store and resells them with the proceeds going toward library programs.

That’s a lot to think about. As for my collection of more than 100 videos of baseball games from the 1980s and ’90s, I wrote to major league baseball, but they haven’t responded yet.


TODAY’S JOKE: Here’s one from Everett.

The teacher of the earth science class was lecturing on map reading. After explaining about latitude, longitude, degrees and minutes the teacher asked, “Suppose I asked you to meet me for lunch at 23 degrees, 4 minutes north latitude and 45 degrees, 15 minutes east longitude...?”

After a confused silence, a voice volunteered, “I guess you’d be eating alone.”