RIAA Targets Internet Radio

    March 5, 2007

In a decision that could drive the nail in the coffin to Internet radio providers, the U.S. Copyright Royalty Board has endorsed a proposal by SoundExchange to enact royalty rates for webcasts and streaming music sites that will stay in effect from 2006 until 2010.

SoundExchange, the royalty collecting division of the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), will seek to retroactively charge webcasters for streaming content delivered throughout 2006 to users, a decision that could send the sites packing for good.

The new rates will require webcasters to pay for each song streamed to each user, and will increase yearly according to these figures:

2006: $0.0008 to stream one song to one listener

2007: $.0011

2008: $.0014

2009: $.0018

2010: $.0019

Eliot Van Buskirk and Sean Michaels of Wired lament the financial implications of the U.S. Copyright Royalty Board