The Internet Archive wants to do to TV news what it did to the Web: make its history available free to everyone, and searchable to boot.
The non-profit has launched a new service (check it out here) which has every minute of just about every TV news program, dating back to 2009, all searchable by keyword. It will continue to add new material 24 hours after it airs, and also plans to go back and add material from before 2009.
Among the networks archived so far: NBC, ABC, CBS, Fox, CNN, MSNBC, Fox News, Univision, Telemundo, PBS, and C-SPAN. The Archive’s founder, Brewster Kahle, spoke to the New York Times about the project:
“The focus is to help the American voter to better be able to examine candidates and issues,” Mr. Kahle said. “If you want to know exactly what Mitt Romney said about health care in 2009, you’ll be able to find it.”
Of course, if you want to discredit or satirize a politician based on a clip showing some reversal of a position, that will be made easier as well. Or, as Mr. Kahle put it, “Let a thousand Jon Stewarts bloom.”