The future of Internet radio is in immediate danger. Royalty rates for webcasters have been drastically increased by a recent ruling and are due to go into effect on July 15 (retroactive to Jan 1, 2006!). If the increased rates remain unchanged, the majority of webcasters will go bankrupt and silent on this date.
Tim Westergren, founder of Pandora, explained in a recent interview that this would cost Pandora millions of dollars. It would very likely end their business. It’s not just going to affect Pandora. Thousands of internet radio sites and even NPR will be subject to the increase.
Everyone understands that paying royalties is a fact of life but these prices are unreasonable. They are much higher than satellite radio. Traditional broadcast radio doesn’t pay any royalties to record companies or recording artists!
Visit SaveNetRadio.org to join the fight for the preservation of Internet radio. There is a bill in congress, The Internet Radio Equity Act (H.R. 2060), that would fix this. Call your congressperson to ask them to co-sponsor this bill. Tell your friends to do the same.