Thursday, July 12, 2007

Shaken Internet Radio Channels Face Specter of New Fees Sunday

Please, "pray the news"


Sunday will be a day of reckoning for Internet radio stations.

The D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals has refused to stop an increase in royalty and broadcasting fees, jeopardizing the future of some stations. As a result of the decision, handed down Wednesday, fee hikes will take effect in another two days.

The Copyright Royalty Board, which is part of the Library of Congress, decided in March to almost triple current royalty rates by 2010 and impose an annual 0 fee per station or channel. The decision was urged by SoundExchange, an organization created by the recording industry.

In recent months, some smaller Web stations shut down in anticipation of the higher fees. More say they will close as a result of the court decision.

Web radio stations and their listeners have been lobbying Congress to pass legislation that would void the Copyright Royalty Board's decision and use a system that would assess royalties based on a station's revenue. But there has not been any legislative action on the proposal. READ MORE

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