In the early days of television broadcasting, motion-picture film was the only medium upon which television programs could be recorded. It was not until the advent of the first practical video-tape recording system in 1956 that a second recording medium became available. At the present time, both motion-picture film and video tape are used in all phases of television production and distribution. ... [Show full abstract] — This paper reviews the application of both of these media in the recording of television programs from the pre-video-tape days up to the present time. The reasons for the selection of one recording system over the other for various types of television programs are examined and some directions for future development are suggested.