back to article Web radio firms cry foul over DRM proposal

Internet radio broadcasters have claimed that a last-minute record company deal offered to them is a ruse to force them to use digital rights management (DRM) technology. The webcasters' industry association has called the demands "unreasonable [and] unworkable" in a dispute that internet radio companies claim could put them …


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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Excess profiteering

    "more than $1bn annually for what the CRB determined are supposed to cover SoundExchange's administrative costs ... a mere $20m in internet radio royalties."

    No wonder they're being asked to pay over the odds if the middle man insists on keeping more than it distributes.

    Surely, the sensible answer would be for the radio stations and the CRB to jointly set up a genuine non-profit replacement distribution agency that ensures that at least 90% of the go to the actual composers and not to the fat cow middlemen.

  2. Richard Hebert

    Some actual numbers would be nice ..

    From every dollar that they receive what's the percentage

    that goes to the artist ? Hmm ?

    How much is just money thrown at executives and

    administration/legal costs ?

    Really .. if they are so concerned with the artists getting

    fair compensation .. id expect 95 to 98 % at least goes to

    them directly :)

  3. Gilbert Wham

    Thus is bloody ludicrous

    Isn't the bitrate on internet 'radio' streaming extremely low? Surely anyone with the savvy to use streamripping software is more likely to torrent their pirated mp3s at a higher bitrate? For god's sake, half the stuff on the public trackers is at least 192kbs. I only speak as a well-informed observer, obviously...

  4. Morely Dotes

    Pirates? Thieves? Why, yes, that would be the RIAA

    'The deal from SoundExchange is only available to smaller web radio operators. "We do expect commercial webcasters like Yahoo! and AOL to pay the new royalty rates set by the CRB due 15 July," said SoundExchange executive director John Simson. "It is essential that recording artists and content owners receive full and fair compensation from the webcasters making use of their creative works."'

    Payment to artists who are signed to the major labels run approximately 3.5% for tracks sold through iTunes. Independent artists get about 60% of the retail price.

    SoundExchange and the RIAA take a huge cut off the top of iTunes sales, in the neighborhood of 56.5%.

    So who, exactly, is getting the payments from the extortionate fees imposed by SoundExchange? Why, it's SoundExchange - NOT the recording artists.

    On a technical level, it is physically impossible to make streaming music - or any other kind of music "unrippable." if it can be heard, it can be recorded, period.

    I hereby propose that all music lovers immediate begin a boycott of *all* artists who are signed by record labels - no CD purchases, no live concerts, no monetary compensation to "label artists" in any way whatsoever. When they break from the labels, go independent, then and only then they deserve compensation.

    SoundExchange and the RIAA are pirates in the same sense that the Caribbean buccaneers were pirates - they steal from the people who actually create and own the wealth.

  5. Eduard Coli

    Seems stupid

    Anyone else here think this is the same stupid greed that got the music people in trouble in the first place?

  6. Josh

    I know this is preaching to the choir, but

    The RIAA is an organization made up of half-wits. This latest bit of thuggery from them is completely unsurprising. Fucking dinosaur pigopolist douchebags...

  7. Tim Bates

    Re: Excess profiteering

    I tend to agree. Organisations aiming to distribute funds should be:

    a) transparent in accounting

    b) non-profit

    c) not directly controlled by any one side of the industry

    Obviously an organisation setting costs on a fixed basis like this is not helping anyone, especially if they require $1bn to admin $20m. Seriously, give me $1m and I'll admin that $20m for them even if it takes me every waking hour to do.

  8. Andraž Levstik

    Last of the mastadons...

    Seriously... this is like the main telco company here... hey charge more for calls between own members than the latest VoIP providers... These will either go exitnct or change their ways... I'm betting on a long slow clawing death myself...

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Long live minidisk

    Why stream and rip. Much of the output is phased anyway and it's there 24 hrs a day. Anything you may want to hear again will come around soon.

    Technical Q? Do these RIAA guys know how we un-encrypt sound waves. If they don't, please don't tell them.


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