Posts Tagged ‘web radio’

Final Verdict on Web Royalties Reached

July 9, 2009

handshakeWell, this week has seen the end of the battle over webcasting royalties, at least for the next five years or so. In a complicated agreement, web broadcasters and the recording industry have set the terms on how Internet radio is to be charged for broadcasting music over the web.

Tim Westergren, whose Pandora Internet Radio service has been at the forefront of this conflict, made the following statement on his blog:

For more than two years now I have been eagerly anticipating the day when I could finally write these words: the royalty crisis is over!

Webcasters, artists, and record labels have reached a resolution to the calamitous Internet radio royalty ruling of 2007. Pandora is finally on safe ground with a long-term agreement for survivable royalty rates. This ensures that Pandora will continue streaming music for many years to come!

I am sure that this is a great relief to Westergren and to fans of streaming radio. Stability on this matter is a change of pace that should make everyone involved breathe a little easier.

It is not all wine and roses, however. The agreed to rates, while less expensive than the original proposition, are still steep. Westergren himself indicated the effect this will have later in the same blog post when he informs users that their listening time will be capped at 40 hours per month. After that, there will be a fee of 99 cents for a month of unlimited listening.

In addition, the rates paid by satellite broadcasters are only 6.5% of gross revenue, rising to 8% in three years. By matter of contrast, webcasters making more than  $1.25 million yearly will be subject to fees of either 25% of those revenues or approximately 1/10 of a cent  per performance, whichever is greater. Those webcasters making less than that and with fewer than 8 to 10 million listener-hours a month of broadcasts pay either 12% of the first $250,000 and 14% of everything on top of that or they can pay their expenses 7%. A bit of a disparity, eh?

It still seems to be counter-intuitive to me that the promotional services rendered by providing free airplay, whether it be over the air or over the Internet, continue to be sidelined in the record label’s quest to increase their revenue streams. Many, if not most, of those revenue streams would not exist without the fan base built up through radio play.

Photo courtesy of lumaxart, used under its Creative Commons license

Euranet Set To Launch in March

February 27, 2008

EU Flag

Sixteen radio stations in thirteen countries will make up the initial launch on Euranet. It’s a radio consortium officially launched in Brussels, Belgium, by Margot Wallström, who is Vice-President of the European Commission and in charge of the European Union’s (EU’s) communication strategy. International, regional and local broadcasters make up the ranks, including, among others, the following:

But wait, theres more! In addition to the broadcast FM stations across the European Union, there are plans to create an innovative website presence as well. According to Radio Netherlands, a partner in the project, the Internet face of Euranet will also be geared towards the submission of user generated audio.

The website that is part of the project will be of great importance, and it will be innovative, says Peter Veenendaal who is involved with the project on behalf of Radio Netherlands Worldwide.

“This will be a genuine audio website. Throughout the day you can listen to programmes and interviews. What is unique is that listeners themselves can also post sound files online. This will create a kind of database with sounds from all over Europe. And it is not just news, this is also about culture. We want to bring the real sound of Europe.”

While podcasts and audio streams have become pretty standard on radio station websites, this embrace of Web 2.0 style, user-generated content is a significant leap forward. The website, (euranet.eu) is slated to go online on June 1, 2008

The EU is primed to spend €6 million per year (approximately US $8.6 million) on Euranet, funding that the International Herald Tribune reports will run for the next five years. How will a reliance on government funding affect the content produced? Peter Veenendaal of RNW addresses that issue in this brief interview with Radio Netherlands Worldwide’s Newsline.

Photo Courtesy of OpenDemocracy, used under this Creative Commons license.


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