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Call to Action Newsletter # 1

Please act to help reduce your fee.

Hello Gene

(This email is sent to all who were Affiliates as of a few days ago.) The first step in moving forward to regain reduced fees by bringing back the Small Webcasters Agreement is here and the time has arrived. While my attorneys continue to work behind the scenes, we webcasters and providers need to unite and start building momentum. This first phase is primarily to get behind a unified group pushing for success and begin telling our story to all who will listen and especially to those who can ultimately influence the outcome.

Four initial steps:

1) I encourage you to send this email to your stream host providers, to other webcasters, anyone else you think of that would get involved.

2) Sign up yourself and encourage your listeners to sign up at I may not always promote this website, John Draper, here at StreamLicensing, has a beta version that has been ready for months. However, at this time I think it is wiser to unite with this already recognized group. If as time moves forward we need to use our own website and action page I’ll let you know. So I’m encouraging you to move as many as possible to sign up at At least one Affiliate also has a good call-to-action website that I maybe sharing in the future.

3) If you haven’t already please read the following two articles for more background information. Once you have digested them, please share them with as many as you possibly can: As you know, legislative action is where it will have to go ultimately. and the second article: As you read, please note that StreamLicensing fees are not being presently based on the CRB/SoundExchange commercial rate. However, if we don’t bring back the Small Webcasters Agreement before the end of the year, our fees will have to increase to the commercial level as shown in these news articles.

4) Putting links to the pages referenced in 2 and 3, above on your websites would be a great help as you promote bringing back the Small Webcasters Fee structure.

We small broadcasters have been hit with two major increases: ASCAP and CRB/SoundExchange. We can’t do much about ASCAP other than pay it, but we have the opportunity to bring rates back at least partially to affordable levels. We can do this as we unite and work what is ultimately going to be a legislative process to regain affordable performance fees as administered by SoundExchange.

I won’t be able to reply individually to your responses to this email but I want to thank your for all you are doing to help small webcasters have a continued future.


Posted by Gene
Posted under Uncategorized

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rough roadAnother quick update to let you know our licensing rates, which already doubled in January, are going up again in February.

As a result, we are looking at several ways to control costs which disrupts the least number of listeners. One option may be disconnecting from a listener after a certain length of time (for example, when you might go to lunch, etc) or in the worst case scenario, blocking United States listeners.

We don’t want to do any of this, but SoundExchange has our back against the wall and it’s this, or shut down. Please know that StreamLicensing is continuing to try to negotiate on our behalf, and we hope that a cost-effective settlement will soon come.

Posted by Gene
Posted under Shop talk

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In my previous update, I told you that the new royalty rates for 2016 didn’t include a small webcaster’s agreement, effectively pricing us out of the industry.

Although much is still up in the air, I wanted to update with what I know now.

First, negotiations continue behind the scenes to get SoundExchange to agree to a reasonable rate which will allow BlackLight Radio and thousands of other webcasters to continue streaming. While they have NOT yet agreed to anything, the negotiations are ongoing and may be be weeks or months away from a workable resolution.

In the meantime, we are waiting to hear what our licensing provider will charge us moving in to 2016. My expectation is that it will be a hefty increase, but perhaps not so great that we cannot afford it. We should find this out next week, and, if there is any way Cindy & I can afford it, we will continue streaming just as we are right now, into 2016 until negotiations are completed at least.

If, however, the rate given us next week is completely out of reach, we will begin to look in to streaming with another company called Radionomy. They have an app, and provide streaming links to many of the major directories like iTunes, TuneIn, etc. While the “behind the scenes” link would change, as long as you are starting at this page you should always be able to listen.

Where could this go wrong?

  • The rates with our current provider could be out of our reach.

  • The rates with our current provider could be workable, but SoundExchange could refuse to negotiate a reasonable price and we could be down in January, or February, or March.

  • We could try to go to Radionomy, but they could have changed their rules to stream for 2016.

  • We could go to Radionomy, but (believe it or not) not have enough listeners and get kicked from the service. (Yes, you have to keep a certain sized audience for them to keep you streaming with them.)

  • We could go to Radionomy but their business model could fail and they could go under.

…Then again, a meteor could crash through the roof right now, killing me and taking out the BlackLight Radio server. It COULD happen, but honestly I believe we will be able to find a way to keep streaming into the new year.

TL;DR — BlackLight Radio is not likely to shut down at midnight new years eve.

More updates as they become available… and merry Christmas!

Posted by Gene
Posted under Shop talk

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