[icecast] DMCA and webcasting

Joshua Vickery vickeryj at grinnell.edu
Thu Sep 13 18:04:08 UTC 2001

> Everything that I've come across and it is my understanding is that
> traditional radio stations are not exempt if they broadcast via the
> web.  In short, the RIAA and the labels it represents are greedy
> individuals and will take their money whereever they can get it.  If the
> money is green they want it.
Great, so should we file with SoundExchange or wait for the RIAA to pick
a rate?  I'm emailing sound exchange, I think it would be great if they
charged us %15 of our gross revenue, hell I would gladly pay them %100 of
$0.  Even if they insisted on collecting $0.004 per performance I don't think
we have even 100000 "performances" a year.  Say 20 listeners a day, each hears
as many as 10 songs, we broadcast for about 180 days a year,
20x10x180*$0.004 = $140.  We are not talking big bucks here, it certainly
does not seems like reason to stop webcasting.

> > Then in other words, you're stealing music even for your online
> > broadcast.  You _must_ pay ASCAP, BMI, and/or SESAC in order to
> > broadcast _anything_ over _any_ medium.  If you're not paying that, then
> > you are in dangerous trouble of litigation from those companies.  They
> > can and will go after you.  hell, they sued the girl scouts and won for
> > them singing around campfires.
> It depends.  That was my initial reaction, however upon giving it some
> thought, it already might be covered by the University
> license.  Definately consult with the University lawyers and make sure
> that your ASCAP/BMI/SESAC agreement covers your college station.  As I
> recall, our station was covered under the University's agreement, but then
> again we already had an NPR affiliated Jazz station on campus before our
> student run station went on the air.
I am not an administrator, I was told by the station manner that we were
exempt from these fees because we are such a small radio station, we don't
make any money, and we play public service announcements.  Maybe I was

> > Technology royalties for MP3 (if you are using that and not Vorbis), are
> > $15k a year minimum and some percent of revenue if your station
> > generates revenue (do you sell ads?).
> Generally charters of college stations cannot sell ads.  YMMV.  However,
> mp3 streaming is going to die once Thompson and Fraunhoffer start bullying
> people.
Yes, it certainly seems like it is time to switch to Vorbis now.  Sigh, and
I just had liveice and icecast working so well too.

> > Sounds like you are in a bad position, as you're not paying the correct
> > royalties anyway, and if you push the situation, they are likely to just
> > shut it all off.  Explain the royalty situation. Show him jwz's page on
> > broadcasting.
Well, we have a lot of lawyers, but its quite possible that we have it wrong,
I'll see what the advisor says at the meeting, and I'll bring a printout
of jwz's page.

> Again, it has been my experience that most Universities pick up the tab on
> on the PRO's, I don't ever remember our station management having a
> discussion regarding budgeting for the PRO's (I was a PD at one
> time).  YMMV, IANAL, Drive Safely.
We do have money to spend on various things, seems a pitty that we need to
pay for something that we already have permission to broadcast.

Joshua Vickery
Grinnell College
Grinnell IA, 50112
vickeryj at grinnell.edu

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