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View Poll Results: If Aural Moon became an audiorealm.com affiliate ($5/mo) I would:
Gladly pay this miniscule fee to hear this great musicat more bitrates, and the other audiorealm.com offereings! 22 39.29%
Maybe yes, maybe no. I might pay the $5/mo audiorealm fee. 17 30.36%
Probably not. I'd probably move on to a free station, as long as they're out there. 13 23.21%
No way for sure. 4 7.14%
Voters: 56. You may not vote on this poll

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  #1  
Old 09-05-2002, 09:26 PM
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The Future of Aural Moon

Hi one and all!

First off: no, we're not going away. Rather, there are a few interesting developments that we need to make a decision on. Your input is greatly desired; this station "belongs" to the listener as much as it does to me. You've made this station the largest progressive rock shoutcast radio station on earth. And we want you to keep listening to Aural Moon for years to come.

As most of you are probably aware, the RIAA (the Recording Industry Association of America) has decided to kill internet radio as we know it. It can do this, since it controls a large part of the recording copyrights in the music industry,and they've decided to impose a new internet-only royalty rates that will obliterate all but the largest webcasters.

The great site www.saveinternetradio.org descibes the situation succinctly:

Quote:
Most Internet radio stations are at risk of bankruptcy, and may be forced off the air by October 20th, because of a Congressionally-imposed royalty they will soon be required to pay to record labels. (You may have heard this called a "CARP" royalty, named for the U.S. Copyright Office's Copyright Arbitration Royalty Panel that held hearings on what the rate should be.)

If the record industry (the RIAA) doesn't offer a compromise "voluntary" license to smaller webcasters and/or if Congress doesn't pass emergency legislation by October 20th, most observers believe that the decision will effectively kill Internet radio. (The retroactive portion of the fees will bankrupt all but the very largest Internet-only webcasters — e.g., AOL, Yahoo!, and Microsoft. The fees will also probably trigger the shutdown of most remaining broadcast stations' Internet simulcasts, including almost all the educational and community stations )
And that's where we stand. Wth all things Congress, you hope for the best, and prepare for the worst - we must be prepared for the current outrageous rates to go through. We play a fair deal of independent music, but even in the best case scenario, we'd have to pull a lot of great music out of the playlist to avoid paying these fees.

Add this to the already very high costs to run Aural Moon (many thanks to our donors who make it a little easier for us), and you have the making for some shakeups in the industry. Some stations have already shut down. And some are staying, trying to figure out a way through this mess.

There is one solution that we're looking at: becoming anaudiorealm.com subscription station. Aural Moon would no longer be a free station. Listeners would pay $5/month to get access to not only Aural Moon, but the many, many other stations at audiorealm.com (including classical, rock, metal, techno, news, talk, and even other progressive rock stations). By being a member in this way, our costs go way, way down, and all of our music licensing is covered (incuding ASCAP, BMI, SESAC, etc.), and our future would be as secure as it can be. More money to spend on great music for you?

Of course, we realize that much of our listenership comes from folks tuning us in, and finidng us by accident on their IM or iTunes dial, or inteh shoutcast.com directory. All of those links woud go away, and we'd focus on enticing people to subscribe to audiorealm.com.

How many of you would follow us to audiorealm.com? I think $5/month for all that music is a great deal. You may be thinking that you'd just listen to another free station - but there might not be any free stations around soon.

Another advantage to audiorealm.com affiliation is that we can stream in many different formats to our listeners: mp3 at 24k, 56k, and 128k. Windows Media at 21k, and 96k. (Note: those who've signed up for the subscription 128k stream will continue to get that stream for free, but no longer the 56k or 24k - and you wouldn't be subsribed to audiorealm.com. Future donations would not apply to an exculsive high-speed stream, since it will be part of the audiorealm.com subscriber deal. It would go to new music, however!)

Tell us what you think! And answer the poll as well.

Thanks,

Avian
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  #2  
Old 09-05-2002, 09:43 PM
WallyG WallyG is offline
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Count me in. A bargain at twice the price, especially if there are no commercials.
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  #3  
Old 09-05-2002, 09:44 PM
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No commercials, as I understand it.
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  #4  
Old 09-06-2002, 05:20 AM
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Thumbs up

$5/month is a fair price for 24h service of music I never hear on radio and sometimes is hard to obtain on CD.

I only wonder if the 128k-stream would keep its bitrate all the way to Europe. The 56k stream is steady enough. Are there any
European 128k-subscribers who can share their experiences on that point? Have there been any complaints?

Of course, the security of the payment routines is always an issue too...
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  #5  
Old 09-06-2002, 09:15 AM
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Question Ogg Vorbis?

I read that Progrock.com plans to re-launch their internet radio station soon by using the open-source Ogg Vorbis technology instead of Mp3. According to their news release, the Ogg Vorbis technology is not required to pay royalties (at least, not yet). I'm not sure how feasible this would be for AM, but it seems like it could be a better solution. Has AM looked into this option?
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  #6  
Old 09-06-2002, 11:00 AM
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No - they're talking about the possibility that mp3s (even the ones you use at home) could be required to be licensed. In other words, you'd have to pay for every mp3 that you have on your computer! That hasn't happened yet - but the wind is blowing that way. That's a whole 'nother issue altogether. (We'd be covered by audiorealm if that did happen). (For the record OV technology is a very sketchy technology that's in beta right now, and at the moment does NOT sound better than mp3 - but they're working on it).

We're talking about the RIAA royalties for webcasting sound recordings. Every internet radio station will be responsible for that, incuding progrock.com. In fact, that's the reason original owner Jerry George sold his station - he couldn't deal with the possibility of these new fees on top of everything else. The new owners are based outside the U.S. I believe - I'm not sure what they're going to do regarding licencing - but if their streaming servers are here in the U.S. they'll have to pay those outrageous fees, too - or go in with audiorealm. They could also go with live365.com, but it's a similar situation (you have to pay to listen). We're not considering live365.com because of their poor service.

As a note, progged.com (proggresive metal) and CP Radio (progressive) have already joined the audiorealm network.

Avian
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  #7  
Old 09-06-2002, 01:47 PM
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Tax

This is a new tax - having to pay for broadcast music on the net. This is what we say over here.
Since listening to AM I have bought many CD's that I would not have bought otherwise. In Scandanavia there is no other practical source for progressive rock so listening to AM I have been introduced to new music I did not know existed. If there are more people like me then these greedy bastards in the industry and Congress are making a big mistake, because they will lose money and power in the long run. The pirate industry will still grow with imports flowing in from the Far East ect.
Why can't the politicians except the fact that there must be room for the minorities in our democracy.
The conclusion is that I will pay the $5 if there no other alternative, but then I hope I can try the 128k band to find out how stable it is over here. Others I have triede would not be worth the money.

Peter the Viking, Denmark
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  #8  
Old 09-06-2002, 11:26 PM
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We'll also probably have a 96k Windows Media stream, that might be a little better for high latency connections..

Our 56k stream will still be available as well as a 128k mp3.

Avian
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  #9  
Old 09-07-2002, 03:10 PM
rocobley rocobley is offline
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Congress intervention?

I was under the impression that congress was currently debating some kind of legislation that would reverse the RIAA decision. What is the situation with that?



Roderick
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  #10  
Old 09-07-2002, 03:44 PM
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It's just a vague bill that wil be introduced at some point, hopefully. It doesn't look very likely to pass both houses of Congress and become law (most bills don't).

Avian
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  #11  
Old 09-08-2002, 06:02 PM
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Artist/Label Permission

Do I remember correctly that AM was once in the process of obtaining permission from certain artists and labels to broadcast without the application of fees, thus circumventing the CARP rulings? Does that remain a viable alternative? Or does the RIAA (aka government?) have control over ALL copyrighted material?
It still seems to me there would be many artists who would gladly give permission so they could reach the prog buying public.
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  #12  
Old 09-08-2002, 06:30 PM
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Yes, we can do that. Many independent artists we play own the copyright to their sound recordings.

However, there's a LOT of music, especially classic prog, where major labels own the copyright. We could remove these artists to avoid paying fees for them, but that would mean saying goodbye to all of the classic Yes, Genesis, Rush, King Crimson, Camel, Kansas, ELP, Peter Gabriel, Pink Floyd, Jethro Tull, Frank Zappa, Mannheim Steamroller, Al Dimeola, Alan Holdsworth, Traffic, Vangelis, Procul Harum, Moody Blues, Renaissance, Queen, The Dixie Drgs, Mike Oldfield,most of the solo albms from the memebers of these bands and so much more. I really can't imagine Aural Moon without this much progressive rock.

Avian
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  #13  
Old 09-09-2002, 04:14 AM
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I agree with Peter the Viking; listening to internet radio such a AM has opened up new music to me, and I have bought more CDs as a result than I would otherwise. Most music radio over here in the UK is unlistenable for my tastes, so internet radio has been great.

The RIAA has made a big mistake here; their claims that internet radio and MP3 are killing their industry are wrong. It is their pushing of so much mediocre music that is doing that (at least in the UK).

I think I will be paying the $5 though.

Good luck!
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  #14  
Old 09-11-2002, 12:47 PM
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Unhappy I hate to say it, but...

As much as I love AuralMoon, there is one problem for me. i'm not going to quabble of $5 a month, however, I don't have internet access at home. I'm in grad school and dollars are scarce. I can't pay for internet acccess at home per month - too much money. I do all my internet stuff at the universities computer labs, including listening to AM on headphones. Recently, the school decided to limit all bandwidth eaters, and so I usually can't get AM even at school. In short, while I keep up with the developments here, I haven't actually "listened" to AM in over two months. Even when I can get in through the bandwidth at the school, it's definitely only free stuff. If AM goes to Audiorealm.com, that will be the end of Yesspaz - not because I don't want to, but because I can't. Gas, food, and rent are more immediate to my needs than internet radio
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Old 09-12-2002, 08:07 AM
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Sorry huge and greedy corporates....

Like several others in this forum, I have bought a considerable number of cds as a result of discovering new music on AM. If the greedy bastards in the record industry don't appreciate that they will lose business by dint of this additional tax, then their companies deserve to die. I for one refuse to help these idiots.
Here in the UK we have no progressive rock radio stations and the music industry is only interested in manufacturing bands that they can sell to children who seem to be prepared to accept this. Image is all. It's not about music anymore.
Besides if you add up all the taxes we already pay in the UK, (petrol, alcohol and cigarette taxes in excess of 80%) and that the average taxpayer is left with about 30% of what they earn,which actually pays for the goods and services they get, (draws breath!!!) then I don't feel particularly inclined to contribute to the U.S. exchequer!
Sorry AM!
Rant over.
One even more miserable old git!
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  #16  
Old 09-12-2002, 08:11 AM
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If you mean by choosing not to pay the $5/mo fee for the audiorealm stations you are somehow sticking it to the RIAA, it's exactly the opposite.

By paying the $5/mo subscription fee, we pay NOTHING to the RIAA. Otherwise, they get a lot of the station's money.

Avian
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  #17  
Old 09-13-2002, 10:10 AM
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Count me in! I love my 128k stream.
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  #18  
Old 09-13-2002, 11:29 AM
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Five bones is not bad

Avian,
A friend turned me onto AM months ago. I am now a certified addict. With my new noise cancelling headphones, I can work uninteruppted, and enjoy some really great music. I can't imagine not having AM to listen to now. So while I hate to let go of any of my hard earned cash, $5 is not much to ask to keep it going. There are no commercials, no traffic reports, no weather, no BS, just good music. I voted that I would pay the fee. I hope more do so because AM is just too good to lose.

Munson
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  #19  
Old 09-15-2002, 06:13 PM
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Well... i wouldn' t pay it. Here are my reasons:

I live in Brazil. It's not worth paying $5 because of the quality of my internet connection. Despite the good quality of music I listen on AM, it's sometimes truncated/interrupted here (sometimes I can get to a good 56k connection in my college). Even if had my own fast connection, dolars worth too much here to be sent away to the U.S.

I'd be sorry if I couldn't listen to music from the net, which is my main source of prog.

Is there a way of making in the future, a non-mainstream, free AM station (a secondary station), separating great bands (which demand royalties) from more alternative bands, for listeners like me, who are fond of new and unknown stuff?

I have one more question: What happens if AM servers get located outside U.S. ? What are the limits of the U.S. national law?
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  #20  
Old 09-16-2002, 02:34 PM
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I voted probably not, but that is because I am but a poor student from Europe, and need all the money I can save :{

If things were other, I'd gladly pay for the great music you play. (Also I only recently tried internet-radio, and am not sure if I stay long, since I tend to stop several things after the novelty to me is gone....)
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