Legal deposit

France’s legal deposit in the audiovisual sector was entrusted to Ina in 1992, and today covers 168 television channels and radio stations. It was completed in 2006 by the addition of part of the French Internet legal deposit.

As part of the Heritage Code, the legal deposit allows Ina to build up a collection that will become a reference, a key element in the country’s collective memory. In 1992, French law extended the obligation to radio and television broadcasters and entrusted Ina with collecting these archives. The deposit pertains to all programmes of French origin broadcast for the first time.

Ina hence became the fourth national player to manage the legal deposit, with the Bibliothèque nationale de France, the CNC and the Ministry of the Interior.

From 1995, the Hertzian broadcasters began to deposit the programmes they produced with Ina.  

The legal deposit was then extended to cable and satellite channels and private radio stations. The Ina teams rapidly set up systems enabling them to record the channels’ programmes directly.

With a digital capture system by satellite and fibre optics, the programmes of 168 radio and television channels are recorded around the clock 24/7.

Extension to the Internet

The website collection, launched experimentally in February 2009 as part of the legal deposit, now covers over 14,000 French websites.

The decree of December 19, 2011 on the legal deposit of the web implemented the Law of August 1, 2006 (DADVSI Law on authors’ and related rights in the Information Society). It sets the conditions governing the selection and consultation of the information collected on the Internet for legal deposit by Ina and the BnF.

Among the French websites, Ina’s scope covers:

  • Websites of audiovisual media departments;
  • Web TV and web radios;
  • Websites mainly covering radio and television programmes;
  • Websites of organisations in professional and institutional audiovisual communication.

The Legal Deposit also includes 12,600 Twitter accounts (since 2016) and 7,800 video platform accounts (since 2008).

Ina has introduced an innovative process that enables the collection to take into account the time and quantity aspects of the websites linked to audiovisual media.

The programmes collected for the legal deposit for which Ina does not hold any operating rights, are archived and enhanced by document processing.  They are then made available to anyone whose research project requires recourse to radio and television sources.  

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