BBC News: The Unexpected Archive

The BBC News website is a service I use on a daily basis - indeed it's usually my first port of call if I want to read the news while I drink my coffee in the morning. Interestingly though, it's also a rather unexpected mine of forgotten Dreamcast-related news items, preserved in an internet-based time capsule for future readers to pore over. I've known about this for some time now, having done quite a bit of internet-based digital archaeology and digital preservation work in a previous employment role, but I thought it might be nice to share this valuable - and reputable - information source with you.

By simply typing the term 'Dreamcast' into the BBC News homepage's search box (in the top right of the page), a whole series of Dreamcast-related news items is produced, in an eery chonological order that almost entirely documents the rise and fall of the system in less than four results:
The rise and fall of one screen grab
Further down in the results, there are some interesting items about features we never saw; such as the planned ability to play the stock market through the console's online interface, and there are even some nice shots of the Dreamcast launch event and early MSR screens featured too. Here are a few more images of these largely forgotten news articles (click the pictures to go directly to the articles on BBC News):
The Dreamcast Junkyard even gets a mention in the results, as we were featured in 2013 as part of a story about the British Library's 100 Websites initiative:
It's quite strange to re-read those articles that were full of promise and really upbeat opinions on the Dreamcast prior to it's launch; and equally quite sad to read about the demise of Sega as a force in the console business almost as it happenned. A true archive of the history of our favourite system, hidden in plain sight.


CD ageS said...

Wow. Thank you for sharing this.

Tom Charnock said...

No problem, it's a really cool repository for Dreamcast articles from the very time they were written. There are even recorded interviews embedded on some of the pages - it's like listening to the voices of the dead (but who probably aren't dead...hopefully!). Wonder if any other bigger gaming news sites will steal this story and pass it off as their own, as with some other reason articles here...