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By Michael Howell
August 2015

First of all, it gives me very great pleasure to welcome you all to iMetaFilm. We are at the beginning of a very ambitious project – Scan Once, Find Forever – and we want as many of you as possible to join us in our quest. Please do not hesitate to get in touch with us at any time; dialogue with our customers is key to our business, and we will always be delighted to hear from you.

The beginning of a journey is the time to ask Why? Scan once, Find forever. Why?

In a sense, but only in a narrow sense, it is about history. I would say that motion picture film footage is absolutely unique as a historical artefact. Even more, I would assert that motion picture film footage is the most potent historical artefact of all. How so?

Consider how we experience history. A museum; an art gallery perhaps. It is thrilling to see an ancient suit of armour, or a early steam traction engine, or perhaps a work by Monet or Holbein. However, you cannot experience the armour or the traction engine in its original function. No medieval armour could be worn in modern battlefield; no traction engine can be driven to work. A painting is different, in that you can experience the object in its original function – to be viewed – but its content is the artist’s abstraction, not a historical record. And if the painting is a portrait, are they not nearly always of someone rich and powerful?

In contrast, a motion picture film can be experienced in its original function – to be viewed – and its content is an accurate historical record, as seen by the objective lens of a camera. Motion picture film is also uniquely informative in that it is a motion picture. How can you really understand what a cat is until you see it pounce? How can you appreciate a dance without seeing the movement? And in its historical context, there is one more thing that makes our motion picture heritage absolutely unique. This is the history of Every Man. Somewhere in the world’s footage is your family, your grand-parents, your home, your friends, your colleagues, your country. We just have to find them.

Of course, in all of this we are talking about digitised, accessible motion picture films. A reel of film in a can is just a reel in a can. It may as well be empty.

Scan once. Find forever. It’s time to get started.

Michael Howell, CEO


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