Live365 sent out an email earlier today to me (and the other 10,000) internet radio webcasters who broadcast their station via Live365. I still don’t understand who receives the fees that SoundExchange collects. Prior to this new ruling the fee I paid to Live365 ($59.95/month for 1GB of music library storage plus streaming) also covered ASCAP, BMI, SESAC and SoundExchange fees. But I still have no clear idea who SoundExchange is collecting fees for — bands, record labels … who gets the money? How does the new minimum fee of $500 (retroactive to 2006!) that SoundExchange is charging get passed on to bands and/or record labels that play on Exploit Boston Radio? I’m primarly playing unsigned or small label bands. Do they see any of this money?
Dear Live365 Broadcasters:
Recently, the Copyright Royalty Board (CRB) made an initial ruling of alarmingly high new royalty rates for Internet radio for the 2006-2010 period. The ruling increased sound recording royalties by 140% over the next 4 years and included a $500 minimum fee per station per year. The CRB is now rehearing our arguments against these unrealistic fees, but we must keep the pressure on.
With around 10,000 stations the previously released rates would mean an additional $5 million per year owed by Live365 and our broadcasters. Should this decision stand, most small webcasters on Live365 would be driven out of business and listeners would lose diversity in radio programming and choice in radio content.
We’ve created a special broadcaster webpage that has tools and information to help. This new page includes congressional addresses and contact information, sample letters, a broadcaster story submission form, details on changes we will be making to the Live365 services, and more.
Please check it out at www.live365.com/broadcasterchoice.
Though the CRB is rehearing our arguments, you still must make your voice heard by the lawmakers on Capitol Hill. Call, write, e-mail, and/or visit your Representatives and Senators today!
We will continue to fight for a realistic ruling and will work with our broadcasters, audiences, partners, and DiMA to appeal with the DC Court of Appeals if our motions are not granted.
You, Live365 Broadcasters, are our voice. Our voice must resonate to be heard and to save Internet radio. We’ve weathered this storm before and will do so again!