EMG Optical Media Pen

Did you know that many pens commonly used to label CDs, DVDs, and other optical disks may cause permanent damage, making the disk unreadable?

The EMG Optical Media Pen is safe for use on CDs and DVDs.

This marker has a felt tip and water-based ink. Other marking pens with fine points or rolling balls, as well as those with solvent-based inks, pose a danger to optical media because they may cause damage that interferes with a laser's ability to read recorded data.*

How can I get an EMG pen?

  • Join EMG

Become a member of EMG and receive your EMG pen FREE! EMG annual membership dues to AIC members are $20. Membership benefits include access to the EMG listserv and affiliation with AIC's newest specialty group. Your dues support EMG's programs at the annual AIC meetings, programs exploring some of the newest challenges facing conservators of modern media today. To become a member of EMG, visit the AIC membership web page.

  • Purchase Pens

Your purchase of EMG pens supports future EMG programming and education efforts. To order pens, visit the online store.

How should I use the EMG pen?

Following the guidelines outlined in section 5.2.5 'Marking' of CLIR's Care and Handling of CDs and DVDs: A Guide for Librarians and Archivists (Fred R. Byers, October 2003), EMG recommends labeling only on the clear inner hub of the disk.

*Based on testing conducted by Media Sciences, Inc. of Marlborough, Mass., felt-tipped, water-based inks are safer to mark CDs and DVDs than roller-ball pens or solvent-based inks.

This publication was developed under a grant from the National Park Service and the National Center for Preservation Technology and Training. Its contents are solely the responsibility of EMG and do not necessarily represent the official position or policies of the National Park Service and the National Center for Preservation Technology and Training.

EMG Optical Media Pen