Thursday 19 May 2016

Karaoke PAS: The Spin

What value is this?
The 20,000th self-recorded find has been added to the PAS database this week
The facility to record your own finds directly onto the PAS database has been around since March 2010 [with] training and support offered by the PASt Explorers project since [...] late 2014 [...]  the 20,000th record itself [...]  is a sixpence of Elizabeth I, which is just the sort of record which really helps the FLOs with their huge workloads.
What is that supposed to mean? Now 2.7% of objects recorded on the PAS 'database' were not recorded by the archaeological staff of the Scheme, but by 'karaoke recorders' from the public which can only represent a further debasement of the information value of this accumulation of random finds. Those huge workloads are still totally insufficient to keep up with the depredations of thousands of artefact hunters and collectors - most of whom neither present their finds for recording nor engage in self-recording on the PAS database. Indeed, if there are sixteen thousand of the blighters, 20 000 objects recorded by them in six years is a pretty paltry showing to be calling a "remarkable' success. Where are the rest of the pocketed objects going? The coin image for the vignette was found on eBay and shows another Elizabeth, the one in whose reign a large part of the archaeological record of England's history was trashed by collectors right under the noses of the acquiescent archaeological community. "Remarkable" says the PAS.

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