Monday, April 16, 2007

Will Internet Radio, as we know it, die on the vine?

At least in America that may be the case. A recent decision by the Copyright Royalty Board may mean the end of listener supported radio stations like SOMA, Chronix, and Radio Paradise.

Internet based radio stations will now have to pay an additional fee, per listener, on top of the fees they already must pay to royalties performing rights organizations like BMI, ASCAP and SESAC.

Having been in the radio business myself I know that even with advertisers and commercials, most radio stations run on a razor thing budget. A large cut of their revenue goes to pay the royalties. For listener supported radio, that margin is even thinner, with no commercial sponsors to help pay the royalty fees.

The music industry keeps trying to force the old model into the new technology and it's a square peg in a round hole. Certainly there needs to be protection for the artists who's work we enjoy, so that they are properly compensated, but it needs to be balanced in a way that we can actually hear this good music. If it's left up to the current delivery machine of FM radio stations, I fear we will be resigned to listening to the same tired music over and over and over.

If you want your voice to be heard, you can sign the on-line petition, or use THIS LINK to call, write or e-mail (Calling is best) your representative in the US.

You can also read a bit more about the subject in this Wired Article

Do your part to save Internet Radio.

No comments: