YouTube adds Tape Mode to celebrate birth of video recorders with static and screen roll

In Google doodle fashion, YouTube is celebrating the birthday of something significant by adding a new feature to some of its videos. YouTube Tape Mode turns clips into dodgy 80s-style VHS copies to celebrate the 57th birthday of the first commercially available video recorder.

The new feature is only to be found on certain videos - we have only seen it on clips stored on YouTube's own channel so far - and we're not entirely sure if the site plans to keep it around for more than the one day, but it is fun to see modern HD footage rendered as if it were being played on an archive tape. There's screen noise, distortion, the occasional screen roll, and we're impressed at just how accurately YouTube has captured the pause effect when you hit the pause button.

Makes you glad we don't have to live with it every day anymore.

If you want to relive the heady days of the 80s, or to find out what we had to put up with back then if you're too young, check out YouTube's own videos, including Rewind YouTube Style 2012 on the main YouTube site.