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!). To protest these rates and encourage the millions of net radio listeners to take action and contact their Congressional representatives, today is a national Day of Silence.
Many stations, who pay royalities and licensing under the previous rates, are being hit by this. If you’re American, think about contacting your representative; if you’re something else, remember the music industry is global and what’s to stop it happening there.
And it’s not just the small companies affected, even Yahoo, (and Yahoo Music) and MTV are joining in.
Myth: Yahoo! (and other big Webcasters) can “afford” these rates. Fact: LAUNCHcast loses money under these rates. Yahoo! has no appetite to run radio as a loss-leader.