Internet Radio: An Idea

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Now that things seem to be easing up a bit for Internet radio, at least as far as the deadline for working out an effective and fair royalty arrangement with the RIAA and Sound Exchange goes (see my previous post), it is time to share a thought that came up while in NYC this past week.

One of the centerpieces of the current battle is the fact that radio provides an amazing route by which most people discover new music. This is, despite the attempts to downplay it, crucial. If it were not then we never would have seen the advent of payola. I have worked in music and seen firsthand the boost that airplay can provide, especially to an up-and-coming musical act. I consider this to be axiomatic.

Let’s change gear for a moment. I promise it will all come together in the end. I am a believer in Creative Commons. The ability to set standards for how an image/song/video/text piece may be used, altered and shared is something that affects me daily in my work on the Internet. Astute observers will notice the Creative Commons license link in the attributions for all of the pictures I use in my posts. It is a powerful and useful tool, and one that (like free airplay) can extend the reach an exposure of an artist’s works.

So what if some enterprising soul combined the two? Internet radio broadcasting only CC licensed music is fascinating idea. And it would not have to be limited to the Internet. Such music could easily and legally broadcast over the AM/FM bands without incurring royalty fees.

Radio CC may well be the wave of the future. Please share your thoughts on the subject. I’d love to hear them!

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2 Responses to “Internet Radio: An Idea”

  1. Neil Hepburn Says:

    One station that does this is Musick Radio:
    http://www.musickradio.com/

    Their stream has been down for the past week, so I can’t say when it will be back up.

    I listened to them for a while (and still do from time to time). You can definitely find some good material there, and if you’re into discovering new music it’s a great place to hang out.

    I wouldn’t describe it as mainstream, but the model is certainly very compelling and something to keep an eye on.

  2. George Williams Says:

    A concept like this will take awhile to mainstream, I should have guessed that someone was already doing it though. Thanks for sharing the link Neil!

    I heard a multiclturalism panel at Advertising Week talking about the way that giving away the music is the new model. Not something I really expected to have filtered up so quickly but something that I was pleased to hear.

    Michaela Angela Davis talked about hip-hop artists giving away the songs on their web site and making much more money from the merch sales made on the same page. Open source mentality entering the mainstream marketplace will be interesting to watch.

    Of course radio has “given it away” for years exposing artists to new audiences since its inception….

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