Musicians and music lovers, listen up!
Internet radio is in danger of extinction. The Copyright Royalty Board, a panel of judges who make rulings on copyright fees for broadcasters, has enacted a set of rules that, if enforced, will likely result in the death of most independent Internet radio stations. From the Savenetradio.org website:
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!). If the increased rates remain unchanged, the majority of webcasters will go bankrupt and silent on this date. Internet radio needs your help! The Internet Radio Equality Act has recently been introduced in both the House (H.R. 2060) and Senate (S. 1353) to save the Internet radio industry. Please call your senators and your representative to ask them to co-sponsor the Internet Radio Equality Act by clicking below.
Ironically, the effects of this legislation will probably be felt most profoundly by musicians, as independent bands/labels depend heavily on the Internet radio stations who would be put offline by the increase in fees. NPR's costs will also skyrocket, which puts additional pressure on a national resource that is regularly threatened by budget cuts.
Please help. Follow the link below and ask your legislator to co-sponsor and/or support the Internet Radio Equality Act. And hurry--as of this writing, Internet radio has about forty days left!