HELP SAVE INTERNET RADIO - hypebot

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David Gordon

I read your blog every day and consider it a valuable resource. But I was dissapointed to see this post presenting a "company-line" PR release from an organization that does not clearly state who is being served by its agenda. I ask you to look into this further and present information from both sides of the debate.

How do we know that the increase in royalty rates would be bad for music? Maybe it's not. I'm not taking a position on this yet - I see both sides and need more study before I can decide which is the best approach - but I don't automatically assume that SaveNetRadio is correct. For one thing, who is this coalition? They present as if they are advocates for artists, but their webpage does not say who they are. In an article in Billboard, I found that they are sponsored by DiMA, with member companies listed at this link: http://www.digmedia.org/content/joinDima.cfm?content=members. The members are all broadcast and technology companies, but not music artists or record labels. Certainly if it were better for the creators of the music and not just the technology companies and broadcasters, then musicians and labels would appear on the membership list.

Of course higher rates would be a burden for internet broadcasters, but what about musicians and small indie record lables? As a small indie record label and recording artist, we do not get paid when our music is played on terrestrial radio. But with internet radio under recent laws, there is a royalty payment - one of the few ways we can recover some of the costs of making and providing the music listeners enjoy. It's not obvious to me that reducing those royalties from the proposed rate would increase our sales by the supposed promotional value of the radio plays. (And what we would receive from even the proposed new rate is relatively minimal). Why should our music be available for free, when we've worked so hard to make it available?

As I said, I don't have a clear position on the internet broadcast rate debate. It's a complicated issue. But I don't like the way SaveNetRadio is presenting this as if there was some sort of conspiracy to "stop the music". If there is a debate, there must be more than one view, so let's look at the whole picture. Thanks.

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