November 30, 2007

Artistic Types Meet The Laffer Curve [chad]
— Open Blog

Want to turn a bunch of unwashed grunge band wannabees and indie radio hotshots into supporters of supply side theory? It's simple enough just just raise the royalty rates on songs played on internet radio by about 300%. Suddenly when the shoe is on the other [stinky] foot, people who have disdained the laffer curve and supply side economics as only helping make the rich richer when applied to tax cuts are full on supporters of its miraculous economic power to increase revenues by keeping prices lower.

For that reason, an arcane but whopping fee increase for radio stations broadcasting over the Internet ought to give music lovers here and everywhere pause. And it ought to be tossed out in negotiations under way between the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, which pays most public radio station royalties, and the group representing record labels and performers. The Copyright Royalty Board, an arm of the U.S. Library of Congress, announced last March an increase in royalties of 300 to 1,200 percent — fees Internet radio providers owe performers. What were they thinking?

Such figures could put high-quality Internet stations out of business. The losers would be the listeners who could no longer enjoy such wide variety of formats. What is more democratic than the ability to listen to new and different music over the Internet?

The other losers would be the performers who supposedly benefit from such high rates. Fewer stations playing the music means fewer royalties and less exposure for performers.

Seattle Times

Funny how that works.

Posted by: Open Blog at 06:13 AM | Comments (17)
Post contains 266 words, total size 2 kb.

1 I didn't read the whole thing, but any article printed in the Seattle Times must have a obligatory screed about the inequities produced under a capitalistic/corporationalistic (?) patriarchy. It's, like, a law. Or something.

Posted by: skh.pcola at November 30, 2007 06:19 AM (jFpwo)


I always love how the grungers alkways hate capitalism until it means getting in the way of their P&L Statements.

Posted by: eddiebear at November 30, 2007 06:23 AM (wnU1W)


Whoosie, will you add your name to your post?

Posted by: lauraw at November 30, 2007 06:25 AM (0fbYp)

4 oh i suppose i will.  sorry forgot about the name thing

Posted by: chad at November 30, 2007 06:29 AM (WNcvq)

5 Maybe they should slap a 100% tax on coffee up there too. Use it to buy carbon credits. Let's see how that makes their heads explode.

Posted by: roy at November 30, 2007 06:48 AM (QBYjk)

6 Do they still do the "non-surveyed stations" thing? Back in the '80s, college radio stations would pony up their royalty payments and playlists to ASCAP and BMI, which would take the logs, throw them away, and disburse the money based on commercial radio playlists. Some college radio DJ would play a Husker Du song, and Springsteen got a royalty payment, in effect.

Posted by: Oldsmoblogger at November 30, 2007 07:01 AM (arEOF)

7 Don't we need another weird Malor discourse posted...

Liberals are some of the most greedy and controlling people...from my experience, musicians are some of the worst, also from my experience.

They think they are so smart...

Posted by: E Buzz Miller at November 30, 2007 07:01 AM (sf4Oe)

8 Some college radio DJ would play a Husker Du song, and Springsteen got a royalty payment, in effect.

It's the same or something like it. Coincidentally, one of the guys
from Husker is a friend of mine, and he's said that the only radio
royalties he's ever received are from Japan. (They didn't really get
paid for selling hundreds and hundreds of thousands of records, either.
That's why The Living End came out, and specifically included "Every Time," so Norton could finally get a check.)

The boingboing/slashdot/EFF dildos who push a worldwide mandated
"universal license" are seeking to apply the
Springsteen-gets-Husker's-money scheme to all artistic royalties, regardless of medium. Because they're stupid, mostly.

But all leftist policies are incidentally [cough] oligarchical.

Posted by: Retired (Not Gay) at November 30, 2007 08:07 AM (k5JzA)

9 This whole internet radio thing and the efforts to bleed webcasters dry is a very important subject to me; I listen to internet radio CONSTANTLY, and have heard more new and interesting music over the web than I would EVER hear on traditional over-the-air radio.  So now, sensing an opportunity to milk a few bucks out of enterprising webizens, SoundExchange and the RIAA are earnestly applying their strong-arm tactics to squeeze the life out of these mostly modest operations.

It sucks, pure and simple.

I've bought more interesting music thanks to these internet radio stations in the past three years than I EVER would have, had traditional over-the-air radio been my only source of new music.  Simply stated, there's not a single traditional radio station I can pull in that plays what I want to hear (i.e., downtempo, chillout, nu-jazz, etc.)

So why are they seemingly hellbent on ruining things for the artists and these modest internet radio stations? I'd love to know.

Posted by: Dan-O at November 30, 2007 08:14 AM (yMnY4)

10 The truth is, being a singer/song writer is not, for most, a good way to make money. Nothing is going to change that. You want to make lots of cash, be an investment banker.

Posted by: Steve (the artist formerly known as Ed Snate) at November 30, 2007 08:47 AM (XZFbS)

11 "Simply stated, there's not a single traditional radio station I can
pull in that plays what I want to hear (i.e., downtempo, chillout,
nu-jazz, etc.)"

I'm with you on that, except the nu-jazz part.

Posted by: AR at November 30, 2007 08:56 AM (OaV41)

12 When it comes to issues that matter to them the most, either in time, money, or ego, everyone's a conservative.

Posted by: OregonMuse at November 30, 2007 10:00 AM (uzP/l)

13 The intent of the fees wasn't to make money. The intent was to kill internet radio. The folks at Save Net Radio are on it:

What Net Radio is asking for isn't even parity with the rates paid by broadcast stations--they are simply asking that the rates be brought down to the level of what satellite stations pay.

Posted by: Attila Girl at November 30, 2007 10:41 AM (aywD+)

14 That just bolsters the point that taxes / fees do affect revenue slash production.

Posted by: chad at November 30, 2007 11:23 AM (lNQg8)

15 I should hate to lose Paradise Radio even if it is run by a couple of old time lefites.

Posted by: JimK at November 30, 2007 12:32 PM (FtU65)

16 That just bolsters the point that taxes / fees do affect revenue slash production.

That should have read taxes and fees do affect revenue production.  I must have been typing with my head firmly implanted between my buttcheeks.

Posted by: chad at November 30, 2007 12:35 PM (lNQg8)

17 Well there's a decision that's bound to have the nasty unintended consequence of increasing illegal downloads significantly.

Wait, should I call it an "unintended consequence" if its the obvious and likely outcome, and the only predicable outcome?  Because I can't see what this would achieve aside from more illegal downloads.

Maybe I'm a psychic and they can't see the blatantly stupidly obvious outcome?

Posted by: Gekkobear at November 30, 2007 09:20 PM (iQXmA)

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