Yet Another Thing is Disappearing from Our Generation! Oh the Horrors!


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I remember standing at some electronics place on Carling Avenue a few decades ago in Ottawa arguing with my late husband about VCR’s. He looked carefully at the VCR and said it wouldn’t last, and we ended up taking a Betamax home–and we all know how that turned out. They were a staple in every household— even if we couldn’t program them.

The last-known company manufacturing VCRs will reportedly halt production this month, ending an era. Funai Electric Corp., based in Osaka, Japan, blamed the decision in a statement on difficulties in acquiring components, according to PC World. Dismal sales also likely contributed. Funai said only 750,000 VCRs (or video cassette recorders, for all you youngins) were sold worldwide in 2015. That’s down from millions in the 1980s and 1990s, when they were a basic in American households. Funai said only 750,000 VCRs were sold worldwide in 2015.

Dang, I’m surprised THAT many were still being sold– and surprised they were still in production, when you can buy a used one for like $5. There must be some part of the developing world that doesn’t have flea markets and yard sales.

Remember  how all of North America spent the 80s committing felonies, building libraries of recorded films dubbed off of television and copied from rentals. I can remembering using tapes that in some cases cost more than DVDs today.

Now..all long gone..

Today, retailers like Best Buy and Walmart continue to sell devices that play both DVDs and VHS tapes. For a standalone VCR, however, it appears easier to turn to places like Amazon or eBay (or your local thrift shop). Did you know that film studios reportedly stopped producing VHS tapes back in 2006.?

Everything goes the same way. My late husband’s first hand held calculator, which replaced a slide rule, cost over $1,000.00. Now you can buy something equal for about $5 at the grocery checkout stand. But back in the day that calculator was worth every penny. My first microwave cost over $800.00 and was a monster,taking up most of my counter $45.00.

This is a sad day for me– seeing the demise of the VCR. My technical know how peaked with the VCR. I could set up and program one in minutes, instruction manual be damned. RIP VCR. So what if I bought an extended warranty from Sears–way back, what now?


About lindaseccaspina

Before she laid her fingers to a keyboard, Linda was a fashion designer, and then owned the eclectic store Flash Cadilac and Savannah Devilles in Ottawa on Rideau Street from 1976-1996. She also did clothing for various media and worked on “You Can’t do that on Television”. After writing for years about things that she cared about or pissed her off on American media she finally found her calling. She is a weekly columnist for the Sherbrooke Record and documents history every single day and has over 6500 blogs about Lanark County and Ottawa and an enormous weekly readership. Linda has published six books and is in her 4th year as a town councillor for Carleton Place. She believes in community and promoting business owners because she believes she can, so she does.

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