The Times-Tribune

Barker marks video milestone

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NEW YORK — The problem for Bob Barker wasn’t getting up early every day for his new TV gig.

On the morning of Dec. 31, 1956, he had bowed as host of NBC’s weekday game show, “Truth or Consequenc­es.” But here was the hitch: Viewers in the Eastern U.S. tuned in for his show at 11:30 a.m. It aired live — which meant each zany 30-minute telecast had to originate from its studio in Hollywood at what, for Mr. Barker and his fellow California­ns, was a not-so-chipper three hours earlier.

Then a high-tech breakthrou­gh came to his aid. Mr. Barker, then 33, would notch a huge TV milestone: On Jan. 22, 1957, “Truth or Consequenc­es,” with Mr. Barker presiding, became the first program to be prerecorde­d on videotape for subsequent airing in all time zones.

This year, the television industry is observing the 60th anniversar­y of that radical breakthrou­gh.

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Bob Barker

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