August 24, 2007

Wyden, Brownback Applaud Early Net Radio Agreements

Washington, DC - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) and Sam Brownback (R-Kan), Senate sponsors of the "Internet Radio Equality Act" released the following statement in response to DiMA and Sound Exchange's announced agreement to cap the Internet radio "$500 per channel minimum royalty" at $50,000 per service.

"We are encouraged by the good faith efforts represented by this initial agreement. It is a promising first step in the negotiation process which we are hoping will make our legislation unnecessary.

"We will be watching closely as the final royalty issues are resolved. As we have said in the past, we are concerned about any attempt to restrict the fair use rights of listeners. We hope that the voluntary stream protection effort, that is part of this agreement, takes into account the interests of all parties, including artists and listeners.

"We are committed to protecting Internet radio not only as a new outlet for artists, but as a creative medium for commercial, non-commercial and public sector users alike. Internet radio offers millions of listeners access to diverse programming that is not typically available and it is in all of our interest to keep it alive."