Goodbye, Internet radio. There’s no way the hobbyist-level operators, who are doing this as a labor of love, will be able to pay these royalties (apparently, about $500 a day). Up until today, I barely listened to conventional radio at all; I listened to Internet radio all the time. As of today, most of my favorite streams are dead air, and I have to imagine the others are not long for this earth.
No doubt the big broadcast-radio conglomerates and the RIAA are happy. The RIAA, which has had its collective head stuck up its collective ass for years, shouldn’t be so smug. I’ve bought quite a few albums as a result of music I heard on Internet radio–probably more than I’ve bought because of broadcast radio. In the past, there was a chance they’d get some revenue through record sales. Now, they’re not going to get any royalties from the Internet streams (since they’re disappearing), nor from the album sales spurred by those streams. This is arguably more of a clear-cut win for big radio, since it eliminates real competition. Then again, I’m not going to start listening to broadcast radio more as a result of this.