Publication Details

Yecies, B. (2004). Failures and successes: local and national Australian sound innovations, 1924-1929. Screening The Past: An International, Refereed, Electronic Journal of Visual Media and History, (16).


This article aims to expand our knowledge of the success or failure of sound technologies in the Australian exhibition market in the years between 1924 and 1929. Crucial to this issue are the complex relations between previously unrecognised groups and individuals involved in promotion of sound technology and in the wiring of Australian cinemas. The process by which all 1,420 of Australia's cinemas were finally wired for sound by 1937[1], was not one in which an American monopoly had demonstrated unchecked power over a passive Australian market. There were a large number of national and international contributors to this process and a significant degree of contestation in the innovation of these powerful new technologies.