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Duping is the process by which one video-cassette tape was copied. Two VCRs were connected with composite audio/video cables and one was set to play while the other recorded. Since fans worked with analog tape, each copy degraded the video and audio quality. Videotapes that were "1st-gen" (first generation) were tapes that were copied only once from the master video tape. "2nd-gen" were copies of copies. By the time fans reached "6th-gen" copies the video was often so badly degraded faces were blobs and sound was warbling and tinny.
Since many TV shows were never released on commercial video-tapes fans often had to resort to duping the tapes they recorded at home on their VCRs as the shows aired in order to share their favorite shows. Some conventions, like Revelcon set up 24 hr duping rooms just for this reason.
The phrase 'dubbing" is also used in the context of copying. However, it can also mean the process of recording a new language audio track (ex: some foreign films are dubbed into another language so the audience will not have to deal with subtitles). This is usually done at the commercial level. In anime fandom, the process of dubbing is often considered the less preferred method of translating anime with some fans preferring subtitles.
- "There are a number of people... who have been very generous in sharing eps, songvids, blooper reels and other taped bits that feature our boys... The duping of tapes is time-consuming, wearing on the original tape, and considering the cost of tapes, zines, postage, and the wear and tear on VCRs, involves both money *and* effort. While most... are very generous in sharing tapes, it is also considerate of the receivers to offer an equitable compensation." Veniceplace FAQ.
- "Beautifying the packaging of vid tapes is a fairly recent part of vidding. When I first started collecting vids, they were generally passed around on a sort of fan circuit, duped by one person for the next (bootlegged, I suppose, except that that was the only way any of us knew to get them), and it was a struggle to make people tuck in a note saying whose vids they'd copied for me." Carol S (vidder)'s notes on her songtape Reflected Images.