March 16, 2009

B101 Philadelphia's #1 Radio Station Has Stopped Streaming

Will other radio stations follow the protest and drop their "Listen Live" Streams?
From R&R As a protest against rising online music royalty rates negotiated by SoundExchange, AC WBEB (B101)/Philadelphia owner and operator Jerry Lee will stop streaming the AC outlet's signal online as of Sunday, March 15.






Dear B101 Listener,

Sorry, B101 is not streaming our radio signal on the internet at this time. A new SoundExchange music licensing agreement has jeopardized your ability to listen to all kinds of music on the internet. Excessive music royalty rates, which have nearly doubled in the last three years and continue to increase to unprecedented levels, no longer make streaming a viable option. We’re working toward a resolution so that radio stations, artists and listeners can all benefit and enjoy music on the internet.

Please tune to B101 on your radio dial at 101.1 FM. If you’re having trouble getting our signal to come in clearly, try moving around the power cord, as on most radios, it also acts as the antenna. In the event you’re looking for a quality, dependable radio for your office or home, click here for one we recommend.

If you would like to read more on the issue, please click here.

Sincerely,

B101


"What I’m concerned about is 2015," Lee told R&R. "That's when it becomes ridiculous. I’ll have to give away about half the money I take in. I don’t want to promote people listening on our stream, because in the end this is going to be a very unprofitable part of our business." "It's just a bad business," he continued. "I don’t expect anyone to follow my lead, but I'm one guy out there saying enough's enough." "Many stations, including mine, won't be able to afford to stream music," Lee said in the press release. "Less streaming means fewer revenue opportunities for stations and ultimately less money for the artists who receive royalties. It's puzzling why SoundExchange would want to destroy a potential growth business opportunity for the artists it purports to represent."

By the way: B101 is one of the most successful independently owned stations in the country. It consistently rates as the number 1 or 2 station in Philadelphia; outperforming Clear Channel and CBS Radio owned stations... Also Internet royalty rates has effected music streaming services like Pandora, Finetune and LastFM and your ability to build your own playlist.
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