November 17, 2012 05:28 PM by Donna W. Martin
Billy Joel and American Idol guest star, Rihanna along with many other musicians are standing together to fight the Pandora backed Internet Radio Fairness Act. In all, more than 120 artists have signed an open letter written to congress asking for the rejection of the Internet Radio Fairness Act. What’s all the fuss about? Take the jump to get all the details!
According to Reuters, “Pandora is a mostly advertising-supported online music company, founded more than a decade ago, that streams songs through the Internet. In October, it said its share of total U.S. radio listening was almost 7 percent, up from about 4 percent during the same period last year. But Pandora’s success has been double-edged – the more customers it gains, the more money it has to pay overall for rights to stream music.”
Pandora Media Inc is lobbying lawmakers in the U.S. congress in an effort to get the Internet Radio Fairness Act passed, which would significantly change the regulations surrounding how artists are paid royalties for their music.
According to Inquisitr, the open letter to congress signed by more than 120 artists says that while the artists are fans of Pandora’s radio, they argue that the Internet Radio Fairness Act is unfair to them. This is because if the Act were approved, it would cut royalties on their music by 85 percent.
An excerpt from the letter reads, “Why is the company asking Congress once again to step in and gut the royalties that thousands of musicians rely upon. That’s not fair and that’s not how partners work together.”
According to SoundExchange President, Michael Huppe, This issue is critical to the tens-of-thousands of recording artists we represent – all of whom rely on this digital performance revenue stream to make a living … It is important that we protect artists and the long-term value of their music, which is, after all, the foundation of Internet radio.”
But Pandora argues that the Internet Radio Fairness Act would level the playing field among them and other traditional radio stations and satellite radio providers because Pandora is currently paying higher royalties than the other radio outlets for the same songs.
Pandora explains, “We are asking for our listeners’ support to help end the discrimination against Internet radio … It’s time for Congress to stop picking winners, level the playing field and establish a technology-neutral standard … The current law penalizes new media and is astonishingly unfair to Internet radio.”
What do you think about the Internet Radio Fairness Act? Do you agree with the artists? Or do you agree with Pandora? Post a comment below and let us know where you stand.
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