Streaming is changing extremely fast


In March, 73% of audio streaming is happening on mobile devices, and Pandora, Spotify and Slacker are crushing Terrestrial radio. SiriusXM doesn’t use the Internet (although streaming is available) so their 25 million paying subscribers are not in the numbers.

Bruce Jenner isn’t the only story about transition.

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29 Responses to 73%

  1. Art Stone says:


    Remember H Ross Perot? I was working as a contractor at a GM division when GM sold their tech folks to EDS. The labor unions had previously tried to unionize the Tech Center in Warren Michigan, where most of the software types worked. By the time EDS would take over a company, it was too late to stop them. It was a carefully crafted process to shove life time loyal employees out the door and evade pension obligations. The GM employees were a bit slow to understand the danger – like vacationers in Phuket Thailand seeing a tidal wave approaching and not understanding the danger.

    Belatedly, they went back to the labor unions they had voted against who gave them basically the “do we know you?” response. The employees retained lawyers and created enough of a fuss that GM offered them 1 month of salary per year of service, up to one year’s salary to “just go away”.

    EDS was extremely anti Union and behaved in some pretty bizarre ways. The young naive recruits were sent to Plano Texas for “training”. They were housed in motels owned by EDS – while the students were in class, EDS would go into their rooms and search them for evidence of “bad” behavior. The motel was owned by them, and the students were not paying for the room. There was no expectation of privacy, especially in Texas.

    So if you know that history, it was pretty bizarre when the U.S. Labor unions got behind H Ross Perot’s 1992 Presidential run. Perot thought they agreed on opposing NAFTA, but the effect of his running for President was we got 8 years of the Bill and Hillary co-presidency.

    • CC1s121LrBGT says:

      The press seem enamored with the Clintons, both Bill and Hillary. Despite the fact that most people voted against Bill in 1992 and again against Bill’s reelection in 1996 the press still calls him “a popular President”.

      Note that most people also voted against GW Bush in 2000 and in 2004 in the middle of two wars, he won election with less than 51% of the vote.

      From 1993 to 2009, a total of 16 years we had a president most people voted against 3/4 of the time and the last 1/4 the president won by less than 1%.

      • Art Stone says:

        The “right wing” folks who are expecting Republicans to work miracles just don’t get it. With 40%+ of the country dependent on a government check and many more through indirect subsidy like reduced price school lunches – short of either economic collapse and/or all out civil war, they are never going to “take our country back”. In that case, the looting in Baltimore is just a tiny preview of coming attractions. Personally, I don’t believe Barack Obama leaving office will happen without massive riots in 2016/17 – much worse if he leaves sooner.

        • CC1s121LrBGT says:

          True Democrats would sponsor the reform “for the common good” rather than trying to find, isolate and buy votes of small groups.

          Having said all that, the looting in Baltimore was far less than the looting through asset forfeiture and eminent domain.

          Don’t get me wrong, two wrongs don’t make a right but wronged people sometimes make it a priority to get revenge and overlook rational thought. For example, it makes no sense to burn down the only pharmacy in the area- where do you go now when you or your family need medicine? The Middle East is caught in this cycle of thinking had been Ireland. Let’s hope we can appeal to people sense of “common good”.

  2. Art Stone says:

    Eventually Coast to Coast will get caught in the same net as Dave Ramsey. Talk stations generally only have what is called an incidental license – intended to cover short musical selections in bumper music and such. If a talk show plays licensed music with lyrics and affiliates only have the incidental license – or even worse no license at all – the station will get clobbered.

    • Art Stone says:

      Art Bell is facing this exact issue with his desire to return in July doing a podcast


      He knows that bumper music is a problem. Since he doesn’t have the safe harbor of the “over the air” exception for radio, he’s totally on the hook. Podcast would typically cost a percentage of the revenue.

      I was looking at the BMI details and confirmed what I already sort of knew. In major markets, BMI has monitoring stations that identify and log all music played on all stations, including fragments of songs. It is done by pattern recognition, not necessarily watermarking

  3. Art Stone says:


    So this Christmas, when your local church sends carolers to the old folks home to sing O Holy night, inform them they are violating copyright law.

  4. foyle says:

    Somewhat related: Grooveshark is no more as of April 30th: http://grooveshark.com/
    A settlement agreement with major record companies over copyright issues led to their demise.

    • Art Stone says:


      A few more details

      A judge hit them with a $736 million judgement. I can think of another streaming service that is begging for a similar outcome. I don’t think the big labels were scared as much as there was little point suing a company with no assets. The biggest fish draw the most attention.

      • CC1s121LrBGT says:

        Ten years ago there was company in Russia with a web site selling the same songs as iTunes but rather than selling them for $2.00 or $1.00 (I am not so familiar with iTunes prices last decade), they sold any song for 10 ¢. Similar to the toll road accounts, you’d establish an account and your usage would be deducted from your balance with them.

        Last I knew the US government had been trying to shut it down for not collecting the various fees that it imposes but the Russian government protected it saying that it did not have a treaty agreeing to pay those fees.

        People see the multi millions that the singers get for singing a few popular songs and don’t feel that they should fund that.

        It is an interesting debate on how the artists should be paid, how much, and how to pay out money from various music the slush funds the law requires.

        • Art Stone says:

          The entire business is very slimy to me. My total lifetime purchase of recorded music is probably under $50. It isn’t that I steal it, I just have no interest in it.

          You probably know, but for people who come and go, back in the 1940s, the radio business (aka NAB) got fed up paying ASCAP, so they agreed to all boycott ASCAP and established BMI. If you wanted air play, you had to sign with BMI at much lower rates. Mainstream labels and artists refused to leave ASCAP and held loud and visible protests.

          BMI was only able to sign up “fringe” artists – R&B, bluegrass, Jazz. The boycott was on radio for over a year. The result was the consent decree where rates were turned over to government regulation.

          We have the same fight brewing again. Radio’s position is still they shouldn’t have to pay as they are providing publicity.

          My personal opinion is copyright protection is way too long. It maybe made sense to reward the artist for a couple decades, but now the copyrights are assets traded by people who had nothing to do with creating the music. Playing Elvis on the radio is not generating record sales, and probably not selling any concert tickets other than in Vegas and Kalamazoo.

          • CC1s121LrBGT says:

            I agree with you. Here is something to think about. You receive a gift certificate for a choice of either of two new CDs – the newest one from Paul McCartney or the debut recording of a teenager you had never heard of who lives in Nebraska. Which do you choose?

            Most people would pick the new Paul McCartney CD, even if they don’t like Paul McCartney, they surely know someone who does or could at least sell the CD on eBay.

            When these slush funds allocate their tax collections (mandatory fees), they generally do so by sales, so Sir Paul gets much more money than the kid from Nebraska. i.e., the rich get richer and the poor work harder and have little to show.

            Perversely, it is these same famous recording artists that want to forcefully take our money and redistribute it to the less fortunate.

            • Art Stone says:

              Another way to look at it is that the successful want to cut off the lower rungs of the ladder to keep the kid from Nebraska from becoming future competition.

              Warren Buffett doesn’t want higher tax rates because he thinks government spends money wisely – he doesn’t want another Warren Buffett getting big enough to compete against him.

            • CC1s121LrBGT says:

              What if I told you that that “teenager” from Nebraska is only a teenager at heart. His real age is 84 and here he is tuning up with “with a special song” (an old classic). Enjoy:


          • CC1s121LrBGT says:

            Here is a question that someone might know the answer to. I do not. Years ago, I used to go to radio station WFUV’s webpage and listen to old shows that they had available as podcasts. 10-15 years ago, they had dozens of episodes available. I assumed they would have more except for the storage costs.

            Today I went there http://wfuv.org/weekend.html and see only the two most episodes of each of their shows. At the bottom of they page they explain by saying “(We’d post more, but copyright law puts a limit on it.)”

            As they used to ask on SNL, “what’s up with that?”

            Other podcast sites, including those referred to by this site, have many more than the two most recent episodes. I understood that they and their partners had a choice in what they offer, but they are saying that freedom was removed by the government.

            • Art Stone says:

              The lawyers who like to write about such things have been warning podcasters to strip out all the music.

              This is a variant on the problems churches have with sending recordings of church services to shutins. Hymns and other religious music frequently have copyrights for the arrangement, even though the underlying music was written 100 years ago and long ago not protected by copyright.

              Performing the music in the church (assuming you bought the hymnals or sheet music – which often limits the use of the music to a single performance) is permitted as long as the performance is not heard outside of the church. If the tapes you send to the shutins don’t have the music stripped out, the church is making unauthorized reproductions of the performance. SESAC does offer a yearly license to cover that type of copyright violation. I’ll try to find the details.

              To me, the really obnoxious part are the copyright holders probably detest the religion in question.

            • CC1s121LrBGT says:

              Based on the information Art provide below, WBAI could have legal trouble going to the podcast solution I had advocated in a previous reply.

              I need to modify my recommendation and remove the suggestion for podcasts that stream on the listener’s demand and instead replace them with specialized individual streams that repeat every hour- synchronized with the clock rather than listener’s mice.

          • CC1s121LrBGT says:

            Here is an interesting article in today’s news on how the regulations cause a disconnect in the market


            • Art Stone says:

              I just bounced a long simmering idea off Tom Taylor – could Sony USA buy Clear Channel, then play only their own music? He can’t see a reason why not – it is essentially what Univision does.

              Of course, they would do that after shedding most of the debt in bankruptcy. It wouldn’t have to be Sony – just the principle of transforming the radio revenue model from 14 min/hr of spot load ads to inline promotion of the artists. If I’m listening to a CHR station and they do a 5 minute interview with Taylor Swift about her upcoming music tour, I won’t perceive that as a “commercial”

            • CC1s121LrBGT says:

              Re “Sony USA buy Clear Channel”, I believe playing their own music is what Virgin Radio on London did. They played other music too, and I never analyzed and confirmed that they played more of their product then their competitor’s products but always assumed it was an outlet to push their product.

              “I am so old, I remember when MTV focused on music, CNN focused on news, and the Weather Channel focused on weather. ” — CC

            • CC1s121LrBGT says:

              ASCAP is a sort of throwback to the big labor union days where workers were mostly unable to avoid the group negotiating and big government stepped in to arbitrate disputes.

              If “American” software engineers were represented by a group like ASCAP, they would be paid more than American “composers”, American “authors” and American “publishers”.

  5. Parrott says:

    Interesting. I have never streamed on my iPhone. but I don’t own it. It’s owned by the company I work for, so I have never tried it.
    I do have a app on it that looks up those placards on Trucks and tank cars on trains that tell you what hazardous material they are hauling. Its cool , you just enter in the number.

    I don’t know who I would have on my imaginary radio station in the morning.
    I use to listen to Bill Bennett, but sometimes it wasn’t all that. Imus was funny at times ( few) but I could listen to him if nothing else is on.
    From 9am to Noon, ‘Chris Plante’ . He is hilarious and direct. I can’t stand Beck anymore. I Like Laura Ingram somewhat and use to listen to her everyday back in the day , then migrated to Beck and left beck when he went to mexico.

    I would have Alex Jones from Noon to 3pm. I use to listen to Dennis pregar and John Gibson. I get annoyed with alex sometimes and switch to others.

    I don’t know who I would have from 3-6. sometimes I listen to Tom Sullivan
    Mark Levin at 6, Laura Ingram on tape in between.
    I’d like to get that ‘Space guy’ on the station in Toronto. maybe at 10pm.
    at least I could kick cumulus arse, (locally) except I think Chris Plante is on Cumulus on WMAL ?
    I ought to buy the local station and boost the ‘ Power’ so Art could hear it in Charlotte, LOL
    I would call it ‘The Parrott’ Talk or squawk’ LOL, Not to bad?
    Better than calling it the ‘The Answer’ ‘The Big Talker’ ‘The Talk’ ‘The Moose’
    Then have Cigar Dave all weekend,


    • Art Stone says:

      HTML5 has opened up mobile devices to stream radio without needing an app or flash (Apple devices don’t have Flash)

      It’s been my position for about a year that streaming companies that don’t support native streaming without an app get my “thumbs down” – I told that directly to one of the biggies just this week. I didn’t come away with the impression they cared

      Triton, Abacast and Tunegenie have native streaming. iHeartradio and tunein are the apps to have if you’re going to clutter up your phone, but I find both like trying to swim through molasses. I kind of have the same issue – 14,000 radio stations is incomprehensible. The human mind can only retain about 7 data points at a time. Having too many flavors of ice cream doesn’t make people happier, just confused.

      • CC1s121LrBGT says:

        Streams are a key part of the web that google hasn’t indexed. Google a business and you get almost a business card for the business. Google a radio station and you get a phone number but not a stream. Which do you think more people are more interested in?

        The other blind stop it the one that gets even less attention. Google will list files by file type. Word files, Excel files, PDF files, even video files…. buy try to find mp3 files and it is a black hole.

        • Art Stone says:

          You ask interesting questions. I think the general answer is “deep linking” is going to get you in trouble. My rule has always been to only use links that already exist in plain sight. Other directories that published “raw streaming links” vanish very quickly. The stream is their property.

          I try not to do anything that would irritate stream owners, and by now it should be very clear I’m not generating any revenue – by design.

          Tunein clearly is engaging in activity where someone is required to pay royalties. It’s not at all clear if they are an intermediary collecting data to calculate royalties or if stations are still responsible. Tunein is not the one I alluded to previously. Tunein was created by people in the radio business, so they shouldn’t get in trouble. Clearly what they are doing has a lot of support within the industry. Maybe I should have gone to Vegas and bought booze and girls for the radio people.

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