Local Radio Freedom Act
Thu Jun 4 00:17:00 EDT 2009
In a message dated 6/3/2009 10:21:56 PM Eastern Standard Time,
Is this Act going to help stations like WJIB who have been
required to pay ridiculously fees for music played?
It says "any NEW ...fees", can this remove fees such have been charged?
No, it won't help WJIB on its existing fees. However, it will prevent WJIB
from having to pay new fees along with massive reporting (of all songs
played) requirements. The Bill, HR 848, did get amended 3 weeks ago to say that
stations billing $100k to $500k would have to pay only $2,500.00 in new
fees.... HOWEVER, things like that could be changed by big-money broadcast
interests by the time it would have become law.
Record companies were seeking about $3-BILLION from radio..... divide that
by 14,500 radio stations, and each station pays about $270,000.00 yearly.
So if small stations were to pay only $2500. or less, then the big FM's would
have to pay millions.
However, at the last minute an attachment to the bill might say.... "small
stations in small markets would have to pay only $2500. but if its a small
station in a big market (WJIB), then it is treated like a big FM. You KNOW
the NAB will try to do that.
Other items in this bill..... stations billing less than $100k annually,
would have to pay $1000. Talk stations would pay nothing for use of song
bumpers, and non-comm stations have their own rate too.... forget what it was,
but it was not too much.
And one sympathizes for the performers, the way they've been getting
screwed by the labels over the past 80 years..... but this Bill would only make
the big artists richer, and the one-hit wonder would still be without any
We in radio can;t claim victory yet.... things could change, but it sure
looks good. If radio gets lets say 240 House votes, then it will not go to an
actual vote on the House Floor. Even now, with 220 House member promises
(non-binding), it still looks pretty good.
WJIB and WJTO will present a one hour debate on this in the future.....
Will be announced on JIB/JTO and also on radio-info.com. It'll be a real good
meaty program with arguments from all sides.
All the best,
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