Wednesday, 23 December 2015

Rebuffering: What To Do


I've been asked what Americans can do to respond to the crisis in Net radio in the United States. Here are some suggestions. (This is a running document; new proposals will be added as we become aware of them.)

(Updated 26 January 2016)

o   Sign this online petition.

o   Sign this one too.

o   Write your Congressional delegation - your representative and both senators. Letters hit harder than emails, and phone calls hit harder than letters. (Unfortunately those offices are closed for the holidays, so calls are probably sidelined till after the new rates take effect on 1 January 2016.)

o   Write to the members of the Congressional committee charged with this legislation. Text of that bill, and a list of those members, are here.

o   Those who run a Net radio station can stream PSAs asking listeners to write their own delegations. Station managers should also join Facebook's Internet Radio Broadcasting group, to keep up with developments and responses.

o   See also this 23 January 2016 call to arms by Marvin Glass, director of Streamlicensing LLC. (Posted on the Mouse House Radio webpage.)

It's important to realise that this ruling passes into law on 1 January 2016. It can't be stopped. It can however be overturned later. Will, almost certainly... after the rest of the world has left the US even further in the dust than it already has, and Americans have lost out on a significant chunk of the future. This is not a preservation effort; it's a revival movement.

I suggest that Americans who find this development unacceptable hit this point hard in any correspondence: that the Copyright Royalties Board has literally killed an entire medium in their country, while this new and futuristic industry continues to evolve and flourish overseas. An ironic twist indeed, for a people who were once famous for being early-adopters and -perfecters of new technologies.

Best of luck to American webcasters, and to the IRLs who love their work.


(Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons and a generous photographer.)


  1. In the meantime, how about finding a sympathetic lawyer willing to request a judge for an injunction or restraining order on those rates until Congress reconvenes?

  2. Good idea. Sounds expensive, though. Thoughts?


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