Friday, August 22, 2008

Must Pandora Die?

Kurt Hanson of RAIN (The Radio and Internet Newsletter) posted a GREAT Blog today about the current webcasting royalty situation that is forcing Pandora radio to seriously consider pulling the plug.

Kurt suggests that if Pandora does fold as a result of the new webcasting royalty rates, it will be the "tipping point" that either (and I quote) "(1) triggers a consumer backlash against the RIAA, which, if expressed in the form of a boycott, as some bloggers have proposed, could cost the industry hundreds of millions of dollars in record sales, (2) leads to belated reasonable negotiations from SoundExchange, and/or (3) spurs Congress to pass the Internet Radio Equality Act."

Perhaps the loss of Pandora Radio (loved by millions) would be the very thing that would finally bring about some real significant action and resolution to the issue. But I hope, I truly hope, Pandora doesn't become a casualty of this.

Read Kurt's blog at .

And also don't miss the follow up blog at .

Why should YOU care about this? Because Pandora is giving significant radio exposure to thousands of unsigned artists. I know that I, personally, have sold a bunch of CDs as a result of having my music played on Pandora Radio.

If we lose Pandora, I would suggest that it is a worse tragedy than when we lost the original to Vivendi Universal back in 2001. I've sold far more CDs from exposure on Pandora Radio than I ever did back in the days of Michael Robertson's Why? Because, for the most part, the people who paid the most attention to were the very musicians who were promoting themselves on it. In contrast, Pandora's audience is comprised of everyday people who just simply love discovering new music. was populated mostly by musicians and music promoters.
Pandora is populated by music lovers and music buyers.

Anyway, read Kurt's comments.... and while you're there, subscribe to the RAIN newsletter. It's a great way to stay informed on what's happening with the radio industry.

David Nevue
The Music Biz Academy

1 comment:

Ryan said...

We recently launched an internet radio platform called Highnote. Listeners discover new music on, and independent artists have free distribution with paid promotion opportunities. At the core is the promotional platform we're building which is designed specifically for streaming music. Labels and independent artists get promotional exposure for their new music in the most natural way – played directly after artists that are similar. Ex: I am an artist that cites Coldplay and U2 as influences, I can get my track played into streams after users hear songs by Coldplay and U2. As an artist trying to build a fan base, I only pay for qualified traffic to my web site or MySpace page, where I sell music & merchandise directly (or straight to iTunes if that's what the artist wants).

The crucial thing here for listeners is relevancy -- we provide enough popular songs in streams to keep the listener engaged. And we quickly stop playing promoted music if people don't like it (though it happens less often than you'd think, because the promotions are so targeted).

feedback welcome, we're at