The Detroit Free Press takes a look at the Motown Records physical vaults of music.
I've been to the facility that contains the physical Motown vault in Pennsylvania that the story references. It's inside a large mountain complex (strong rumors that Cheney spent a significant amount of time post 9/11 at this facility) with similar type vaults for various media companies. If you think about the historical and cultural artifacts that the vaults of a company like Warner Bros holds it's really quite an awe-inspiring place to visit. A friend worked for a digital audio transfer/mastering company that did very high-end transfers of the masters for the large media companies. For example, he at one time worked extensively on the Nirvana boxed-set and the day I was in the studio we listened to the multi-track master reels of a young Marvin Gaye live at the Copacabana. It was as awesome as it sounds and then some.
This isn't frivolous stuff either. We're talking about the cultural and historical artifacts that will comprise the history of the 20th century to future generations. These archives are truly priceless.