While streaming internet radio and satellite radio are a geek’s best friends, sometimes for convenience there’s nothing easier than plain AM/FM radio. I started using the radio in my car when I moved farther away from work; with a longer commute I was forced to cycle my playlists more often on my iPod, and the poor quality of my cassette adapter was starting to grate on me. One day I discovered 101.9RXP, and suddenly I was hooked on FM radio again. My mornng and evening commutes seem to go by faster, and I’m learning to leave my musical comfort zone…but if some of the record labels have their way, local radio is going to have a very hard time bringing you new music, as they’re going to be paying a performance tax on all the music they play. Want to know how you can learn more, and possibly help your local radio station? Read on.
Noperformancetax.org has a great explanation of the issue:
What is a performance tax?
A performance tax is a fee that record labels want the government to impose on local radio stations simply for airing music free of charge for listeners.
In recent years, the record labels have seen sales of albums decline as more listeners opt for digital downloads. However, radio remains the number one promotional vehicle for music – it’s not responsible for the label’s resistance to the digital age, and it shouldn’t be on the hook to fix it. Radio already provides between $1.5 to $2.4 billion dollars annually in music sales for artists and record labels. By pushing a tax on local radio, record labels are biting the hand that feeds them.
If you live in the NY/NJ area, you can go to 1019rxp.com and. Let them know that you don’t want to see local radio get hurt by this tax. If you live in another part of the country, check with your local music stations to find out if they have information or if they’ll be affected by this as well.
While not everyone listens to FM radio anymore, it is a great tool to promote new music and be exposed to different artists. Not every area has great 3G coverage for streaming radio (not to mention the hurdles that those programs face as well), and not everyone has satellite radio or the means/desire to pay a monthly fee for their music. The march towards digital music is littered with the remains of programs that did not survive facing off against the record labels; don’t let FM radio die a premature death.