Congress Urged To Preserve Jazz On The Internet
May 9, 2007 at 9:46 AM (PT)
Jazz artists and educators joined FRIENDS OF NEW ORLEANS Jazz WWOZ/NEW ORLEANS yesterday to oppose the COPYRIGHT ROYALTY BOARD's recent webcast royalty rate increase. In a letter to House Judiciary Chairman JOHN CONYERS, clarinetist Dr. MICHAEL WHITE, trumpeter KERMIT RUFFINS, jazz artist TROY "TROMBONE SHORTY" ANDREWS, and more than a dozen influential voices in American Jazz called on CONGRESS to support H.R. 2060, the Internet Radio Equality Act, which would vacate the CRB's decision and establish a new standard for setting Internet radio royalty rates.
If Internet radio dies, the future of Jazz could die with it.
"As working musicians who depend on Internet radio to reach our fans and to make new ones, we are extremely concerned that the recent decision by the COPYRIGHT ROYALTY BOARD will close the door to what has become an essential part of our work," the letter said. "Internet radio is one of the precious few outlets we have to reach Jazz audiences and build new ones. If Internet radio dies, the future of Jazz could die with it."
WWOZ GM DAVID FREEDMAN said, "The massive new royalty fees directly affect NEW ORLEANS artists and musicians throughout the country that depend on Internet radio for air play and to reach new fans. For WWOZ, these new rates would drastically limit our effectiveness as a streaming source and dictate that stations can't afford to succeed. The marginalization or complete shutdown of our streaming services, which is the emerging environment, is tantamount to choking off an important voice of NEW ORLEANS culture and rendering our volunteer powered effort irrelevant."