Clear Channel, Pandora & More Launch Internet Radio Fairness Coalition
October 25, 2012
Clear Channel, Pandora and a number of other organizations have formed the Internet Radio Fairness Coalition, aiming to urge Congress to pass the proposed Internet Radio Fairness Act. The Coalition's stated mission is " "to urge Congress to support legislation (The Internet Radio Fairness Act of 2012, or IRFA), aimed at bringing the royalty system for Internet radio into the 21st century -- creating a sustainable business model for the industry that gives consumers more choices and more products for listening to the music they love; enables artists to earn more money as Internet radio grows; creates a marketplace that will attract entrepreneurs to invest in new, innovative ways to deliver music to the public; and drives higher revenues for record labels." Salem Communications, AccuRadio and the Consumer Electronics Association are among the other notable members of the coalition.
Clear Channel CEO Bob Pittman stated, "We believe that market-based solutions are the way to go. But in the absence of these agreements, the CRB needs to have and consider more relevant information so they are better able to develop a rate structure that will lead to a healthy, sustainable Internet radio marketplace. This will enable artists to earn more and connect more with their fans, consumers to have more choices, and entrepreneurs to invent and invest in new services."
Pandora Founder/Chief Strategy Officer Tim Westergren added, "Legislation that establishes a fair royalty rate setting-standard for Internet radio will drive investment in webcasting, which ultimately offers greater opportunities and more revenue for working artists. Internet radio has been shown to help decrease music piracy and increase music sales. When the digital music sector is allowed to grow and innovate, everybody wins."
Consumer Electronics Association SVP/Government And Regulatory Affairs Michael Petricone said, "Fixing the outrageous royalty discrimination against Internet radio will promote a healthy and vibrant Internet music marketplace. The result will be more investments, more new jobs, more money for musicians and copyright holders, and more choices for consumers."
Digital Media Association (DiMA) Executive Director/General Counsel Lee Knife said, "We currently have a system that applies a unique rate-setting standard which forces Internet radio to shoulder a larger royalty burden than other forms of digital radio. This is a clear case of an out-dated legal framework that stifles technology and consumer options. This bi-partisan solution will drive more innovation in the legal digital distribution of music. This will ultimately allow more choices for consumers and enable greater exposure for artists."