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Save Internet Radio

As someone who used to make a living working in the (now diminished) music industry, I know firsthand the waste that the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) and its corporate masters have laid across a once-lively soundscape.

Their sights are currently set on internet radio — the only remaining source for new, passionate, interesting, unique music in the United States. The RIAA has requested that the Copyright Royalty Board, a division of the Library of Congress, increase Internet radio’s royalty burden between 300 and 1200 percent — placing the future of internet broadcasters in danger.

If the CRB rates are approved, then only mass-audience, big-business internet broadcasters like Yahoo, AOL and MTV will be able to afford to operate. And we all know how great their programming is, don’t we?

My anecdotal experience tells me that designers have a strong affiliation with music. We’re the department where you can usually hear a tune wafting down the hall; many of us have dabbled in bands or composed with our computer; and those of us of a certain generation got into design because we were moved by album graphics.

If you love music, if you despise what radio sounds like, if you’ve ever bought an album from an independent record label — and if you’re an American citizen — then you are obliged to contact your representatives in the Congress and Senate and ask them to sponsor the Internet Radio Equality Act. Your deadline is July 15.

For more information, check out SaveNetRadio.org.

Thank you.

Maintained through our ADV @ UnderConsideration Program
ARCHIVE ID 3573 FILED UNDER Miscellaneous
PUBLISHED ON Jun.27.2007 BY m. kingsley
pnk’s comment is:

This is no alarmist BS, either. Many small internet radio stations have already been shuttered, and many larger ones (like Pandora) are seriously threatened with extinction.

The kind of people who read Speak Up (computer users who value new, creative voices) are the ones who will be most effected by the loss of independent, non-corporate music online. Please take a moment and make a call: lots of folks are very optimistic that the rate hike can be overturned, but only if the people who actually listen to these stations take action now.

On Jun.27.2007 at 02:55 PM
Tselentis’s comment is:

Mark, thanks for making this public to our readers. Designers have been (and continue to be) affiliated with music, but it's unfortunate and alarming to see that web-stations could suffer. Hell, AM, FM, NET... they're just different media.

On Jun.27.2007 at 03:32 PM
Joe Moran’s comment is:

Echo of PNK and Tselentis: If you're in a small market town and miss good music, don't let this fall by the wayside.

Tim Westergren ( Pandora ) suggests you all visit Save Net Radio and write/call/e-mail/visit your congressman/woman.

I actually got responses from my Rep.'s.

Can't hurt. If you care and have the time.

Very Respectfully,

On Jun.27.2007 at 10:19 PM
henry’s comment is:

i've been a big fan of pandora since it started back then. but was saddened when i was sent a note citing that they can no longer server users from outside of USA.

perhaps one day the executives would wake up to the idea that being free help spreads idea and good works even better.

On Jul.02.2007 at 06:01 AM
Mark A.’s comment is:

The great thing about net radio, for me, depending on my mood, is to switch from classic 50's American Bee Bop to Reggie Dancehall to Japanese electronica in a few keystrokes....man, I love exposure to this stuff...
What's served up by Corporate is just future elevator music.

On Jul.02.2007 at 08:59 AM
Elitest Pig Dog’s comment is:

Elitest Pig Dog - Look the people are actually enjoying themselves learning, enjoying music, acting free and turning against the slave pen we’ve made for them.

Elitest Pig Dog 2 - Well then well just manipulate the laws again to show them there our slaves once again.

Elitest Pig Dog - Good Idea, lets start with the music we own that right?

Elitest Pig Dog 2 - Oh, yeah all of it and we can only let them have the brain washing stuff for free. Nothing like 12 year old girls singing britney spears.

Elitest Pig Dog - Oh I just love that we’ll restructure it to play all day on the stations we take over.

Elitest Pig Dog 2 - This should make it easier then to go after talk radio right? and videos on google like money masters? Cause we cant have the truth told to the slaves, i mean when i want a sandwich I don’t wanna have to wait or make it myself you know what I’m saying.

Elitest Pig Dog - I know just where your coming from, I had to wait 2 min. once it was hell, I think my stomach actually growled. Oh yeah and it’s all just domino’s we get this the rest will fall, there stupid and cant stand up for anything. We’ll just start another american idol up so they will watch that and we’ll move in.

Elitest Pig Dog - so then its agreed music first.

Elitest Pig Dog 2 - Aye, to the law system we created to further enslave!

Elitest Pig Dog - Tally HO! To the racketeering Mobile!

On Jul.03.2007 at 12:51 PM
Brad Gutting’s comment is:

Scary shit. I had no idea. Thanks for alerting the community about this profoundly disturbing news, and shame on me for not being aware sooner. Is there anything individuals can do in addition to contacting representatives?

On Jul.03.2007 at 02:42 PM
m. kingsley’s comment is:

Well Brad, you could give financial support to the stations you listen to. I, for one, support WFMU -- the greatest free-form station in the USA.

Besides that, there are watchdog organizations -- like the Electronic Frontier Foundation -- which could use some support. You could also put that fancy advertising ability of yours to good use and spread the word -- or just tell your friends.

On Jul.03.2007 at 02:57 PM
pnk’s comment is:

Update from the RMA, today (quoted fully: please forgive the repost):


Time and options are running out for Internet Radio. Late yesterday, the U.S. Court of Appeals DENIED the emergency stay sought on behalf of webcasters, millions of listeners and the artists and music they support.

UNLESS CONGRESS ACTS BY JULY 15th, it is the end of the road for Internet radio.

We are appealing to the millions of Internet radio listeners out there, the webcasters they support and the artists and labels we treasure to rise up and make your voices heard before this vibrant medium is silenced.

This situation is grave, but that makes the message all the simpler and most serious. CALL YOUR SENATORS AND REPRESENTATIVES RIGHT AWAY and urge them to support the "Internet Radio Equality Act." If they've already co-sponsored, thank them and tell them to fight to bring it to the floor for an immediate vote. If the line is busy, call back. Call until you know your voice has been heard. Your voices are what have gotten us this far -- Congress has listened. Now, they are our only hope.


We are outmatched by lobbying power and money but we are NOT outmatched by facts and passion and the power of our voices.

The exact page of the SaveNetRadio.org website that allows you to look up Congressional office phone numbers is here.

On Jul.12.2007 at 02:46 PM
Joe Moran’s comment is:

Tim Westergren sent an e-mail out today about this, too (see PNK's post above for links to your Reps).

Message follows:

Hi, it's Tim one more time...

Disaster looms! Yesterday a federal court denied a plea to delay the massive increase in rates webcasters must pay the record labels. This means that, absent immediate Congressional action, the new ruinous royalty rates will be going into effect on Monday threatening the future of all internet radio.

This is a very dire situation and I'm writing to ask one more time for your support. The effort you've made over the past four months has been extraordinary and has forced the rapid introduction of the bill, but the committee process has been sluggish and we need to once again remind the representatives of the urgency of this issue. This is perhaps the most important phone call you can make for us.

Please call your Congressional representatives in the House and the Senate and ask them to force immediate action on the Internet Radio Equality Act and bring the bill to a vote. It is critical that their phones begin ringing off the hook starting early in the morning. If it's busy, please try again later.

I'm sorry that we have to keep asking you for this - but it's our only recourse. We are no match for the legal and legislative strength of the RIAA and we need your help.

Thank you again.


-Tim Westergren
(Pandora founder)

End Message-


On Jul.12.2007 at 07:48 PM
pnk’s comment is:

A significant victory!

Well done, people. It ain't over, but this is great news.

On Jul.13.2007 at 02:15 PM
Joe Moran’s comment is:

The bottom line. A Marketplace story ran this evening: Will Internet radio fall silent?


Hope not.


On Jul.14.2007 at 12:17 AM