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Copyright License Fees Drive Pandora Out of Canada

timothy posted more than 4 years ago | from the bargaining-chip dept.

Canada 254

An anonymous reader writes "Online streaming music services such as Pandora are abandoning plans to launch in Canada, claiming licensing fees are too high: 'These rates ... are astronomical,' Tim Westergren, founder of California-based Pandora, wrote in an email to The Canadian Press. The agency that collects music royalties in Canada on behalf of record companies and performing artists wants to charge web-based music sites that stream to mobile devices the greater of two figures: 45 per cent of the site's gross revenues in Canada or 7.5-tenths of a cent for every song streamed. Meanwhile, record labels are blaming the lack of online music services in Canada on piracy: 'Why would you spend a lot of money trying to build a service in Canada when Canadians take so much without paying for it?' said Graham Henderson, president of the Canadian Recording Industry Association, which represents major record labels."

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Graham Henderson (0, Troll)

Jaysyn (203771) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679400)

Graham Henderson: another useless motherfucker who needs a bullet in his head.

Re:Graham Henderson (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33679628)

Holy SHIT this is highly moderated for a death threat. Mod it down myself? Nah, I am going to get in on the action. DEATH! DEATH! DEATH!

Re:Graham Henderson (0, Offtopic)

interkin3tic (1469267) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679812)

Was that a death threat? Seems more like an opinion that the world would be better off if he were dead, or at least his usefulness would not decrease if he were dead. A hair different from advocating his death, and at least a little different from threatening to cause it.

Re:Graham Henderson (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33679836)

That's not a death threat.

"I'm going to go to Henderson's house, kill him, his family & rape his pets & car."

Now that is a death threat.

Re:Graham Henderson (0, Offtopic)

doconnor (134648) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679648)

I think you got your Christmas present.

Re:Graham Henderson (0, Offtopic)

Jaysyn (203771) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679762)

Nah, some jackass always ruins it.

Re:Graham Henderson (1)

MaWeiTao (908546) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679888)

Wow. Talk about an overreaction.

Re:Graham Henderson (0, Flamebait)

Jaysyn (203771) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679976)

It would only be an overreaction if someone actually did it. Quite simply the world would be a better place in he & people like him weren't in it.

Burn karma, burn.

Re:Graham Henderson (1)

macraig (621737) | more than 4 years ago | (#33680060)

Graham Henderson: another useless-to-the-Common-Good motherfucker who needs a bullet in his head.

There, qualified and fixed that for you. He's definitely useful to some persons, or he wouldn't be employed and overpaid.

Re:Graham Henderson (1)

Jaysyn (203771) | more than 4 years ago | (#33680090)

Thank you.

never-ending cycle (1)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679416)

"I eat because I'm unhappy and I'm unhappy because I eat." Fat (non-Canadian) Bastard

Re:never-ending cycle (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33680048)

"I eat because I'm unhappy and I'm unhappy because I eat." Fat (non-Canadian) Bastard

Except Mike Myers is Canadian, so there's a Canadian connection at least. ;)

Heh (-1, Troll)

iONiUM (530420) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679422)

Fuck them and fuck their bitching. As a Canadian, I'm quite happy with the way our laws our (currently). And I do "still" buy music, both from iTunes and CDs, so these guys can.. complain.. somewhere else.

Re:Heh (3, Interesting)

Mashiki (184564) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679490)

I don't buy music at all. Then again I haven't had the urge to listen to the crap they pump out on the radio either. Regardless, you'll find that most canucks are united on this issue, that if they're going to tax us on something. We've already paid our dues to download it. I suppose that whole cradle to the grave idea of paying for something can bite you in the ass...

Re:Heh (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679786)

Then again I haven't had the urge to listen to the crap they pump out on the radio either.

But can one avoid it? Do they not play music over a speaker system in grocery stores in Canada?

Re:Heh (1)

snowraver1 (1052510) | more than 4 years ago | (#33680038)

Yeah, we get the Safeway Radio Network up here. It's not that bad actually; better than most terrestrial radio stations in the area. They play some 80's and 90's music. I have to admit, sometimes when I am picking up groceries, I am grooving in the isles.

Re:Heh (1)

Jaysyn (203771) | more than 4 years ago | (#33680026)

Why punish yourself? There are a ton of good indie acts from every genre listed on RIAARadar. They even have a Greasemonkey script that works with Amazon so you can avoid "Dirty RIAA" artists.

www.riaaradar.com

Re:Heh (1)

danny_lehman (1691870) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679508)

seconded!

Re:Heh (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33679646)

You are not missing much. Pandora used to be good, but as of recently, they have been tossing 15-30 second ad spots between each song, and that is even when you are not using their skip forward feature.

If I wanted to listen to ads, I'd save the battery on my iDevice and flip on the FM radio.

last.fm may not be as polished, and it may not have as many song connections, but at least they don't penalize you for skipping a song you don't like, nor do they bombard you with ads like Pandora.

At least you guys have Spotify, which is something that is worth listening to.

Re:Heh (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33679688)

Pandora used to be good, but as of recently, they have been tossing 15-30 second ad spots between each song, and that is even when you are not using their skip forward feature.

Oh boohoo. You expect them to just give you stuff for free with no way to make any money for it?

Re:Heh (1)

dieth (951868) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679902)

Yes

Re:Heh (1)

Shadis (934448) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679728)

Wow. You must listen to a different Pandora than I do. I've had Pandora playing for the last six hours here at work and I've heard a grand total of two ads. Mind you I've only thumb downed/skipped three songs today.

Re:Heh (1)

An ominous Cow art (320322) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679756)

Odd, I've never heard an ad on Pandora. I've been using it for the last couple of weeks - I lost my iPod and although I've since located it, I haven't gotten back into the habit of bringing it to work.

Re:Heh (1)

sleepy_weasel (839947) | more than 4 years ago | (#33680132)

I pay for mine, and I don't hear ads... 3 bucks a month and I stream probably 100 hours of it on my droid...

Works well too. Even if I'm on the 1X network (EM interference at my office)

Re:Heh (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33679658)

You're quite happy with all your music imposed with restrictive DRM that doesn't allow to be played on any device you want? You're quite happy that different business models can't compete because there is such a lock-down on how the CRI want you to listen to your music? You're happy that somehow a relatively free way of product distribution has the same price as one where you get printed artwork, media, case taking up space in a climate controlled store?

I understand you can't tell me the CRIA pays you to post positive comments to various forums to combat negative opinions on their current outdated distribution models so I won't ask.

Re:Heh (2, Insightful)

Lunix Nutcase (1092239) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679716)

You're quite happy with all your music imposed with restrictive DRM that doesn't allow to be played on any device you want?

What DRM restrictive music? iTunes has been DRM-free for more than a year and any DRM that happens to be on the occasional CD is easily stripped and you can back it up to whatever format you want. So exactly what part of the GP's post were you responding to with this nonsense?

Re:Heh (1)

Beardo the Bearded (321478) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679924)

I don't ever want to give Apple a fucking dollar.

I shouldn't be facing JAIL TIME for boycotting a store.

Re:Heh (1)

NiteShaed (315799) | more than 4 years ago | (#33680168)

I don't ever want to give Apple a fucking dollar.

I shouldn't be facing JAIL TIME for boycotting a store.

How do you get arrested for not using iTunes?

Re:Heh (2, Informative)

mlts (1038732) | more than 4 years ago | (#33680010)

I have a good amount of iTMS bought stuff (just because it is easy to grab a band's new release while at work.) The only DRM on the tracks is the fact that they are stamped with the account ID they are bought under.

Some people might call AAC DRM, but most "MP3" players are able to play this format these days. Most of the Sansa players can play AAC formatted files, Zunes can, most Android phones are able to play this format.

Now, if you are talking video, or iTunes in some other countries which still is FairPlay encumbered, I'd agree with you. However, here in the US (and likely in Canada), music tracks purchased on iTMS are free and clear.

Slacker (2, Interesting)

bhcompy (1877290) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679430)

Money is tight for companies like Pandora, which is why they should go in to the hardware business like Slacker, or at least partner with Slacker. Slacker blows the competition away because of the availability of portable hardware specifically designed for it. Pity Woot! hasn't had a Slacker for sale in quite a long time, though.

Re:Slacker (3, Interesting)

Red Flayer (890720) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679678)

Money is tight for companies like Pandora, which is why they should go in to the hardware business like Slacker, or at least partner with Slacker.

Why would they do that? No one wants to lug around Yet Another Gadget. Although you can buy Pandora-equipped stereos, Pandora apps work just fine on smartphones. Even back in '07 Pandora partnered up with Sprint for firmware packages on Sprint phones so Sprint customers could use Pandora on their phone... nowadays you can use Pandora on just about any new smartphone. Especially since any smartphone worth its salt supports multitasking... why would you need a separate device?

Re:Slacker (2, Interesting)

bhcompy (1877290) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679936)

Because Pandora needs a better revenue stream in order to properly serve the people they want to serve?

And Pandora doesn't allow you to record multiple streams in advance and skip around between streams and songs with fastforward willynilly. Slacker does that.

Also don't need to remain connected over a shitty cell network, instead I have a dozen hours of streams already recorded and I can listen to them whenever I want without draining the my phone battery during constant 3g use(which is just short of GPS as far as phones and battery life performance goes).

If you use your phone to do everything, that's cool, but I use my PSP for gaming, my phone for phoning, and my Slacker and Sansa Fuze for music listening because they're better at doing the task at hand and have better battery life under those conditions.

Re:Slacker (1)

cgenman (325138) | more than 4 years ago | (#33680154)

I was under the impression that Pandora's recording and skipping restrictions were due to licensing restrictions. I'm not really seeing how making a huge investment in hardware manufacturing is going to help that.

Also, didn't Slacker give up on dedicated hardware in 2009? [wsj.com]

Re:Slacker (2, Insightful)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679736)

What's Slacker Hardware? I think I may have a patent on that from my school days.

>>>45 per cent of the site's gross revenues in Canada or 7.5-tenths of a cent for every song streamed.

0.0075 times 60 million songs per month == $450,000 (CAN). Or 45% of revenue collected, which is outrageous. No wonder Pandora decided they could no longer continue. I suspect music companies are secretly run by people with IQs below 90. That's why they keep shooting themselves in the foot.

Re:Slacker (1)

Talderas (1212466) | more than 4 years ago | (#33680092)

Wow. 45% of gross revenues? Holy crap I read 45% of gross revenues as profit. I think my mind did a substitution without realizing it to account for the stupidity of that value.

Re:Slacker (1)

Bobakitoo (1814374) | more than 4 years ago | (#33680140)

The remaining, 0.0025 times 60 million songs per month = $150,000 (CAD).
Who can stream high quality audio 24 hours long, every days, for a months to about 4000 users with that budget?
I dont think they are shoting themselves in the foot.. or at last they dont think they do. They just dont want free/ads suported/cheap internet music service to flourish, selling the same things over and over at the various itunes and itunes-likes are way more profitable.

Re:Slacker (1)

alen (225700) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679854)

didnt slacker kill their hardware business since you have to be a complete moron to pay $199 for a box that only plays slacker radio content? just get an 8GB ipod touch for the same amount.

i like slacker since my $50 a year buys me a lot more customization than pandora will allow. I don't know if it's licensing fees or the pandora CEO is an egotist like steve jobs but they are designed to make you listen to what they think you should. with slacker i can customize the amount of favorites played, year, if it's a hit, etc. i can go as far as making my slacker stations like itunes playlists a bit.

Re:Slacker (1)

bhcompy (1877290) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679998)

Their new pricepoint is a bit high, but when Woot! has them on sale they go for about half that, which is a reasonable price for what you are getting. As you stated, the service blows Pandora out of the water, and the device just adds to it.

Re:Slacker (1)

Itninja (937614) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679862)

What's a Slacker? Some kind of pants-themed TiVo?

Re:Slacker (1)

farble1670 (803356) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679878)

adding to what red flayer said, there are also DVD and blue ray players, and TVs with pandora built into them.

Obligatory (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33679434)

Fuck the RIA ... errr ... I mean CRIA!

Liar! (0, Offtopic)

alexsoko (1868614) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679446)

If you tell me the truth you will hurt me, so you mustn't. But if lie you will hurt me too so you must. But if you do you will hurt me so you mustn't. Herbie would certainly have quite a time with this story.

Rdio works (3, Informative)

Quaelin (172970) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679456)

I'm happily streaming music from Rdio [rdio.com] for $4.99/mo in Canada. I recommend it.

Maybe now.. (1)

Finallyjoined!!! (1158431) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679690)

But when Graham Henderson hears about it, you're stuffed....

Re:Rdio works (2, Informative)

Machtyn (759119) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679722)

But that costs you $4.99/mo. Pandora's service is "free", non-gratis. They get paid through adverts sent with the music. Every song I stream on my blackberry is free to me minus the cost of the very non-intrusive ad they display. I don't know what they get per advert displayed (can someone enlighten us?) it possibly isn't $0.0075 per song for which the CRIA is asking for.

CRIA... CRIA me a freaking river?

Re:Rdio works (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33679792)

for the grammar nazis... yes I see my mistake. it hurts, it hurts!

Re:Rdio works (1)

Andorin (1624303) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679830)

Non-intrusive? Maybe they've switched up their advertising model in the last year or two, but the last time I tried Pandora, I got a 30-second video ad playing after EVERY song. That was way, way too much, and I instantly dropped their service.

Re:Rdio works (3, Informative)

Machtyn (759119) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679914)

I'm using the Blackberry client on the Sprint network. I only get a little text advert that fills up a third of the screen real estate. I usually don't even see it. Occassionally, like once every couple of days, there is a 15-30 second audio advert for the service.

When I'm at home and have the website up, I've never noticed any adverts. The one annoying thing is that it will stop playing after 30+ minutes to ask you if you are still there. -click the Yes button and I'm off again-

Re:Rdio works (2, Informative)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679874)

I'm happily streaming music from http://player.radio.com/player/RadioPlayer.php?version=1.1.9780&station=13987 [radio.com]

for $0.00/mo and not even any commercials. I recommend it. In fact most of the HD2s are free and commercial free. (Click Music and Cities for the full list.)

hey now (5, Funny)

BigJClark (1226554) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679542)


I've bought and paid for every single Nickleback album I have in my collection. Which is none.

You sir, are a criminal! (1)

RingDev (879105) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679596)

So Sayeth Graham Henderson:

"(Canadians) just seem to have no appetite for a legal marketplace."

Damn you and your illegal market tastes. We hate your for your love of violating the law and living on the edge of civil and criminal lawsuits.

-Rick

Re:You sir, are a criminal! (1)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679990)

>>>Damn you and your illegal market tastes.

Is there such a thing as legal and free? Something like open source for pop/dance music?

Re:You sir, are a criminal! (1)

Dancindan84 (1056246) | more than 4 years ago | (#33680068)

Actually yes [wikipedia.org] . The wording is a little vague, but downloading music to put on an "audio recording medium" is perfectly legal in Canada. We pay levies on blank media, so your definition of free may or may not apply.

Re:You sir, are a criminal! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33680124)

You mean Creative Commons music?

Re:You sir, are a criminal! (1)

veganboyjosh (896761) | more than 4 years ago | (#33680146)

I'm a bit biased in my linkage here as I know personally some of the people involved in the bands and the websites, but check these out:

http://www.deathtofalsehoperecords.com/ [deathtofal...ecords.com]
and
http://quoteunquoterecords.com/ [quoteunquoterecords.com]

They both definitely have a more punk rock vibe to them, but especially Death to False Hope has been getting a ton more bands lately. There's probably something on there you'll like. Both labels offer their records for free downloads, but you're encouraged to donate something in exchange.

And I can't stress how hardworking the people running both of those labels are.

Re:hey now (1)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679650)

Hey now. Some of us like Nickleback (especially their song Photograph). And if they ever release a Greatest Hits CD, I'll be sure to buy it for $1 on amazon's used market to show my support!

Okay maybe RIAA has a point about fans not being willing to pay.

But I do pay for it (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33679544)

I buy blank CD-Rs, as do so many other people I know of. The cost of music is built in those. Once you have a stack of CD-Rs, you are no longer able to pirate music in Canada, as long as you only leech. It's the law. They made it. If they don't like it, tough.

Henderson is a liar (5, Informative)

starfishsystems (834319) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679568)

"Why would you spend a lot of money trying to build a service in Canada when Canadians take so much without paying for it?" said Graham Henderson, president of the Canadian Recording Industry Association, which represents major record labels.

Somebody please tell Mr. Henderson to take his head out of his ass. The fact, as he well knows, is that Canadians already pay hefty fees. We already pay for recorded music at a rate far in excess of the cost of distribution. Radio stations already pay royalty fees. And everyone already pays a surcharge on recording media and players so that we can be legally entitled to generate copies for personal use.

How did this media surcharge come about? Because Mr. Henderson's own organization, the CRIA, successfully lobbied for it! [arstechnica.com] That's right. They insisted that Canadians must pay a surcharge in order to legally record music. And so we have been doing, ever since the late 1990s.

Mr. Henderson finds this convenient to forget, but the rest of us have not forgotten. Even those of us who do no music copying at all have already paid in full for entitlement to copy.

Re:Henderson is a liar (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33679702)

How did this media surcharge come about? Because Mr. Henderson's own organization, the CRIA, successfully lobbied for it! [arstechnica.com] That's right. They insisted that Canadians must pay a surcharge in order to legally record music...

Not quite all the truth. Those fuckers lobbied for surcharges on media that I use to back up my OWN PERSONAL DATA. That's right, I have to pay fucktards like him and shitty "Canadian" artists (that can't make a hit) to use media that has absolutely no copyright material on it, just my family photos. Fuck them all to death.

Re:Henderson is a liar (2, Informative)

SweeBeeps (1827982) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679754)

It's par for the course to see that a recording industry exec is completely out of touch with reality.

Re:Henderson is a liar (3, Insightful)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679930)

He's not out of touch.

He's double dipping. He wants to get paid that extra surcharge on recording media (CD-Rs and MP3s) -and- also lock everything up behind paywalls like US-RIAA does. Typical litigious, back-stabbing, greedy motherfucker.

Re:Henderson is a liar (2, Informative)

Cruciform (42896) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679796)

I rarely pick up new music these days. I'd rather listen to a podcast or open university course.
But when I do grab something, I'm torrenting it. If I have to pay a piracy fee to use media or hardware, then might as well make the piracy fee earn its keep.
But I don't pirate software. As far as I know, I'm not taxed by software companies every time I've bought storage media.

What about indie labels? (5, Insightful)

veganboyjosh (896761) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679586)

What about labels who don't belong to the RIAA? It seems like this would be a great way for Pandora--especially Pandora, since they're pretty popular, and people know the name. Probably more so than any other free-to-stream radio--to stick it to the major labels. Just stream indie labels, those who don't belong to the CRIA, or labels who give their stuff away for free, or license it for free for this kind of thing.

Re:What about indie labels? (3, Informative)

Machtyn (759119) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679810)

I don't know about Canada, but in the USA online streaming music services still have to pay a holding company for the right to play the indie music... whether the indie music in question belong to a RIAA joined company or not. I don't have the reference at the moment.

Just buy CDs (1)

mschaffer (97223) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679602)

Rip your own. Put them on your MP3 player.
Most of these download and streaming media sites have onerous terms and conditions, anyway.

Honestly, I hope everyone just stops buying music altogether. I would love to see the RIAA, CIRA, and the greedy big labels just go away.

Re:Just buy CDs (1)

jythie (914043) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679668)

Stopping buying all together will probably not help since they will just assume piracy and thus lobby to get more cut from consumer device sales.

If you really want to send a message only buy music from direct artist sales or small time places that are not pulling this shit. There are plenty of indy artists out there putting out good stuff that would be happy to take your money all for themselves.

Re:Just buy CDs (2, Insightful)

Mongoose Disciple (722373) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679700)

Not really a replacement.

The value offered by Pandora or a service like it is that you discover music that you've never heard but probably will like.

Ripping my own is only useful for music I already know I like.

Fools and their folly (5, Insightful)

who's got my nicknam (841366) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679612)

Mr. Henderson is an idiot, no offense to the intellectually challenged out there. He, like everyone else in the music industry, has blinders on, and is clueless as to what the people with the money (ie, the CUSTOMERS) want. I'd love to get Pandora here. It was brilliant while it lasted, and nothing else I've tried has been able to beat it. And here's the irony for CRIA and their ilk: since Pandora got shut off in Canada, I've simply gone back to downloading. Yes, it's still legal here, as long as we're paying the blank media levies we do. And Mr. Henderson can kiss my shiny metal ass, because I'll NEVER pay a cent for music from artists he 'represents'. Not even to a 'legal' streaming service. Am I sad Pandora has given up on Canada? Yes, because I loved their system. And no, because it really doesn't affect me anymore. iTunes has Genius, which is pretty damn good these days, and since I can happily download tunes till I'm out of drive space.

Re:Fools and their folly (5, Insightful)

who's got my nicknam (841366) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679682)

I'm reminded of a story (probably apocryphal) about the first McDonald's that was opened in Moscow. When the staff were being trained by the American reps, one of the managers put his hand up and asked, "Why do we have to be polite to the customers? WE have the hamburgers!"

Re:Fools and their folly (1)

pregister (443318) | more than 4 years ago | (#33680004)

Try grooveshark. Search for a song you like, play it, and hit the "Radio" button. It'll stream similar music, let you rate the songs to change the type of music you're getting, etc.

45% of revenues is particularly weird (4, Insightful)

Trepidity (597) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679640)

Unless you're running a cost-free operation, with no employees, servers, or bandwidth, gross revenues are not equal to profit. Say that you have a low-cost operation and 70% of gross revenues are profit, though. That means that the recording industry wants a licensing fee of 2/3 of your profits? And even 70% is pretty good; it's not uncommon to be running profit margins that are 45% of revenues or less, in which case the recording industry would actually be taking all of your profit, plus possibly more.

Re:45% of revenues is particularly weird (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33679818)

More importantly, they don't base it on profits (gross or otherwise) because they know first hand just how creative you can get on your costs. If you showed a negative profit would they pay you money?

Re:45% of revenues is particularly weird (1)

Martin Blank (154261) | more than 4 years ago | (#33680094)

Most companies would kill for a 45% profit margin. Even the oil companies and financial firms come in at only about 10%. Generally, only software companies or consulting firms make those high profit margins, and then only when market leaders.

Re:45% of revenues is particularly weird (1)

Machtyn (759119) | more than 4 years ago | (#33680224)

Trepidity: Not to be too semantic, but I got a little confused.
For the rest of you who might still be confused, what he meant to say was:

That means that the recording industry wants a licensing fee of 2/3 of your revenue?

In other words. Say your profit margin, before this licensing fee, could be 45% of your revenue. [insert Police Squad joke here) That means the licensing fee will take 100% of your profit, and you'd still owe 21.67% of your revenues.

Let's see if my math works out correctly. Revenue = $100. Expenses, not including license fee = $55. Profit = $45. License fee = $66.67. 66.67 - 45 = 21.67!

But wait! He said the higher of the two - 2/3rds revenue or $0.0075 per song. Suppose your revenue comes in at less than $0.0075 per song. Let's say your company earns $0.005 per song with a 45% profit margin before license fee. That means, the profit, per song is $0.00225. You would have to give all of that up, plus $0.00525 more.

Throughout the day on Pandora, I listen to approximately 50 songs (maybe more, maybe less). If I were in .ca, Pandora would be losing over $0.25 on me per day. That get's expensive when you multiply it by thousands... and it's no way to run a business.

Figures. (4, Insightful)

Drakkenmensch (1255800) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679666)

The agency that collects music royalties in Canada on behalf of record companies and performing artists wants to charge web-based music sites that stream to mobile devices the greater of two figures: 45 per cent of the site's gross revenues in Canada or 7.5-tenths of a cent for every song streamed. Meanwhile, record labels are blaming the lack of online music services in Canada on piracy: 'Why would you spend a lot of money trying to build a service in Canada when Canadians take so much without paying for it?

Now we all know who the real music pirates are.

Blame Canada (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33679672)

No doubt about it! We're a bunch of donut eating, hockey watching, MUSIC THIEVES! The blank media levy is funding our shitty musicians like nickelback and the Bieber. If Graham Henderson had his way, you'd pay per listen on your 8-Track.

Piracy is not the problem. It is greed. (2, Insightful)

aristotle-dude (626586) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679712)

I used to buy a lot more music on iTunes when it was 99 cents but now, with variable pricing, virtually all songs on the Canadian iTunes are 1.29 CAD each so I have stopped buying so much.

The record companies need to stop running their businesses like they are some big movie studio and start finding ways to save money so that they can offer music for less and offer artists less money upfront but more royalties for each song sold electronically.

The old model of upfront contracts will not work anymore in this new digital world.

Re:Piracy is not the problem. It is greed. (1)

grub (11606) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679974)


The record companies need to stop running their businesses like they are some big movie studio and start finding ways to save money

That would require the getting rid of the managerial fluff which cripples many a big business. Start with Graham Henderson and work down.

Why would you spend a lot of money ... (2, Insightful)

kazbah (600283) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679738)

"Why would you spend a lot of money trying to build a service in Canada when Canadians take so much without paying for it?"

I think the question companies are asking themselves is "Why would you spend a lot of money trying to build a service in Canada when fees paid to the CRIA make it impossible to make a profit from such a service"?

It's the lack of decent cost-effective services (we're already paying lots for our music with fees on media) that drives everyone in Canada to use file sharing services in the first place.

Hypocrisy (4, Interesting)

Andorin (1624303) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679740)

Meanwhile, record labels are blaming the lack of online music services in Canada on piracy: 'Why would you spend a lot of money trying to build a service in Canada when Canadians take so much without paying for it?' said Graham Henderson, president of the Canadian Recording Industry Association, which represents major record labels."

Let's not forget that the CRIA is facing a six billion dollar lawsuit [boycott-riaa.com] over commercial copyright infringement of over three hundred thousand songs. Regardless of your position on piracy, these guys have no leg whatsoever to stand on. If they're going to go after individuals for noncommercially sharing music, first they'd better clean up their own mess.

Re:Hypocrisy (5, Insightful)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 4 years ago | (#33680096)

the infringer has effectively already admitted owing at least $50 million and the full claim could exceed $6 billion. If the dollars don't shock, the target of the lawsuit undoubtedly will: The defendants in the case are Warner Music Canada, Sony BMG Music Canada, EMI Music Canada, and Universal Music Canada, the four primary members of CRIA.

The claims arise from a longstanding practice of the recording industry in Canada, described in the lawsuit as "exploit now, pay later if at all." It involves the use of works that are often included in compilation CDs (ie. the top dance tracks of 2009) or live recordings. The record labels create, press, distribute, and sell the CDs, but do not obtain the necessary copyright licences...... Over the years, the size of the pending list has grown dramatically, now containing over 300,000 songs. From Beyonce to Bruce Springsteen, the artists waiting for payment are far from obscure, as thousands of Canadian and foreign artists have seen their copyrights used without permission and payment.

Bastards.

How DARE they accuse us Joe Nobodies of being "pirates" while they aren't even paying their OWN employees, the singers and musicians? Fucking, fucking hypocritical bastards.

Re:Hypocrisy (1)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 4 years ago | (#33680144)

Second attempt:

The defendants [owe 50 million dollars and include] Warner Music Canada, Sony BMG Music Canada, EMI Music Canada, and Universal Music Canada, the four primary members of CRIA. The claims arise from a longstanding practice of the recording industry in Canada, described in the lawsuit as "exploit now, pay later if at all." It involves the use of works that are often included in compilation CDs (ie. the top dance tracks of 2009) or live recordings. The record labels create, press, distribute, and sell the CDs, but do not obtain the necessary copyright licences...... Over the years, the size of the pending list has grown dramatically, now containing over 300,000 songs.

Beyonce, Bruce Springsteen, Sarah McLachlan, Bruce Cockburn, Sloan, or the Watchmen, the artists waiting for payment are far from obscure, as thousands of Canadian and foreign artists have seen their copyrights used without permission and payment..... At $20,000 per infringement, potential liability exceeds $6 billion.

Bastards.

How DARE they accuse us Joe Nobodies of being "pirates" while they aren't even paying their OWN employees, the singers and musicians? Fucking, fucking hypocritical bastards.

Welcome to socialist utoipan taxes (1)

KingFrog (1888802) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679764)

45% of gross? Not even net? Wow. With taxes like that, no wonder so many Canadians cross the border to purchase a variety of goods. Ugh!

Re:Welcome to socialist utoipan taxes (0, Flamebait)

mschaffer (97223) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679964)

Let's face it, Canada could not exist without the US as a neighbor. This is also what keeps Canada from becoming a great country (talented people have no monetary incentive to stay in Canada when you can go to the US and make real money).

How fucking stupid are you? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33680156)

45% of gross? Not even net? Wow. With taxes like that

Sorry, but what the fuck are you talking about? How exactly is a company that charges for the right to use their product a "tax"? What exactly does any of this have to do with "socialism"?

De Facto (2, Insightful)

davegravy (1019182) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679766)

Piracy is the de facto reason given for not doing something in these industries. "We aren't developing this video game title for the PC platform due to piracy concerns", "We aren't offering this broadcasting service because of piracy concerns"... it's a never ending guilt trip. If there's a demand for something and you can't/won't fill that demand for whatever reason, blame piracy!

Say I listen 40 hours a week... (3, Informative)

archer, the (887288) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679774)

20 songs per hour, 52 weeks a year.

40*20*52 = 41600.

At the latter rate, that is 41600 * 0.0075 = $312.

And that's before Pandora's own expenses, such as bandwidth and payroll.

Vicious Cycle (2, Insightful)

TraumaHound (30184) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679824)

'Why would you spend a lot of money trying to build a service in Canada when Canadians take so much without paying for it?' said Graham Henderson, president of the Canadian Recording Industry Association

How are Canadian music lovers supposed to pay for music if no one builds a service to do so?

Re:Vicious Cycle (1)

whoop (194) | more than 4 years ago | (#33680134)

Obviously, the best solution is for a nation (or world) wide tax. This is the only fair thing so the artists can create these masterful works. Otherwise, there will be no art. Everyone on Earth listens to music of some sort, so it's only reasonable that the Agency collects money from everyone so it can distribute it to the starving artists. Think of the children!

Re:Vicious Cycle (1)

night_flyer (453866) | more than 4 years ago | (#33680276)

how are you supposed to FIND new music is the bigger question..

How much for the artists? (1)

oldmac31310 (1845668) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679858)

How much of these punitive fees would actually make it into the pockets of the artists? I doubt it would be much. Sounds like a clear case of the Canadian music industry wanting to cash in big time. They want money for doing absolutely nothing! and why does the article insist on speaking in terms of fractions of a cent? Is there something so difficult about the decimal system?

The Culprit (1)

MrTripps (1306469) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679894)

This is because of all those moose pirates up in Canuck territory. You would download music too if all you had were Alanis Morriset and Bryan Addams.

why is henderson speaking for those with a voice? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33679966)

So here we have the owner of a music streaming business telling us all why he won't come to Canada.

And then we have Mr. Asshat, er, I mean Henderson telling us it's a completely different reason that such businesses (which he doesn't even own) won't come to Canada.

Who are we to believe? The horse's mouth or the horse's ass?

I'll FTFY Mr. Henderson... (1)

BJ_Covert_Action (1499847) | more than 4 years ago | (#33679994)

'Why would you spend a lot of money trying to build a service in Canada when Canadians don't want to give their hard earned money to a corrupt, bully-run industry of assholes who think they are above the law?'

There yah go Mr. Henderson, I FTFY. Retard.

Oh, that's rich ... (1)

gstoddart (321705) | more than 4 years ago | (#33680000)

'Why would you spend a lot of money trying to build a service in Canada when Canadians take so much without paying for it?' said Graham Henderson, president of the Canadian Recording Industry Association, which represents major record labels."

The CRIA was the ones who whined and lobbied so that all blank media in Canada has a surcharge on it to pay them for piracy. The led to the widespread conclusion that since we're already paying for it, we're allowed to. The courts have backed us up on this too.

And this is just hilarious:

The agency that collects music royalties in Canada on behalf of record companies and performing artists wants to charge web-based music sites that stream to mobile devices the greater of two figures: 45 per cent of the site's gross revenues in Canada or 7.5-tenths of a cent for every song streamed.

So, if it was a 99 cent song, they would either want 1 cent, or 45 cents -- since 45 cents is bigger, they'll take that.

Just how much money do they think they're entitled to? I don't download music, but I have little sympathy for these organizations. It's gotten to the point that I will burn a CD of MP3s for friends and not feel even a little guilty for it -- I've bought the CD, and I've paid the media tax ... er, levy.

we pay there is a levy on all recordable media (1)

RichMan (8097) | more than 4 years ago | (#33680002)

Uhm we pay for the right to copy. The Canadian branch of the RIAA fostered a levy on CD-R media a while back the levy also applies to MP3 players and the like.
We pay for it so they can take their complaints about pirates and stuff it.

http://www.digital-copyright.ca/node/1657

Actually after lobbying for years and being happy about getting the levy they now want it removed.

http://www.afterdawn.com/news/article.cfm/2007/09/17/cria_disputes_canadian_mp3_player_levy

What is "Canadian music" anyways? (1)

failedlogic (627314) | more than 4 years ago | (#33680032)

I've brought up the issue of Canadian content in music with friends and in several university classes. I've yet to hear a convincing argument. Maybe someone here can provide an insightful answer. Slightly off-topic, but on subject, since many of these fees are intended to protect "Canadian Content".

When I hear of Canadian Music or Canadian Content, I know that the intention is 1) to protect the Canadian Music Industry and 2) from the perspective of the government to protect "Canadian Identity" and "Canadian Culture". This second argument is usually the one that people fight most to protect especially in the government (and probably lobbiests) as its a softer issue than dealing with the money aspect and has a nice ring to it - we're helping you protect all of our identities.

I have bought my fair share of CDs over the last 10 years (probably over 500). I'd say about 50% of that is American artists, 40% Canadian and 10% European/Asian. I've yet to hear any song (save our Nat. Anthem) that is distinctly in whole or in spirit so damn different from American music. I listen to rock, metal, country, jazz, blues, folk, rap. The BareNaked Ladies strikes me as having been the most popular band with some Canadian references in the songs. (Not a fan) but otherwise Neil Young and Tom Petty are probably the next closest. But even then substitute a few words here and there and you're listening to an American performing the same song.

Other than that across all genres of music, there isn't much to say this song IS Canadian. Even a lot of the (newer) French Canadian music, is the same and is indistinguishable from the rest. It makes reference to French culture - but not generally Canadian or (generously) French Canadian culutre.

So these Tarifs seem to be implying that they are protecting the Canadian music industry. Yet, the consumer is the one that chooses (regardless of piracy rates) what albums he or she will buy. And besides, you are more than free to listen to any number of streaming radio stations on the Internet. Heck, I like those stations better since they play anything but the same Canadian artists on local radio stations.

in 10 years... (semi off topic rant) (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33680080)

In the near future, no one will pay for music. The only people still buying music are the copyright apologists and those who don't know how to download. As culture advances, these people will become fewer.

It is accepted economic principle that in a free market, the price of a good naturally approaches the marginal cost of production. The marginal cost being zero. Granted, the market isn't exactly free: record companies have a monopoly on their product and piracy is the black market, but since copyright is unenforceable, the playing field is level.

This sort of price gouging is an example of why copyright is a flawed concept, especially in the digital age. It's anti-market and immoral.

Smart (3, Insightful)

whisper_jeff (680366) | more than 4 years ago | (#33680150)

'Why would you spend a lot of money trying to build a service in Canada when Canadians take so much without paying for it?' said Graham Henderson, president of the Canadian Recording Industry Association...

Smart. Very smart. Rather than adopt a business model of offering affordable alternatives which most people would be happy to go with they're going to cut off their noses to spite their faces. They're happier to take 45% of nothing rather than a reasonable licensing fee of a reasonable price.

These people are so utterly daft that the mind absolutely boggles. Is it any wonder that they are incapable of adapting to a new technological age and prospering in that age? sigh...

The worst part is these individuals are getting rich from high salaries while the rapidly drive their industries into the toilet. And, once everything gets flushed away, these individuals will walk away with their vast savings and live happily ever after while they've demolished an industry and left it in the stone ages.

sigh...

Corporate butthurt is the only explanation (1)

mykos (1627575) | more than 4 years ago | (#33680248)

Smart. Very smart. Rather than adopt a business model of offering affordable alternatives which most people would be happy to go with they're going to cut off their noses to spite their faces. They're happier to take 45% of nothing rather than a reasonable licensing fee of a reasonable price. These people are so utterly daft that the mind absolutely boggles. Is it any wonder that they are incapable of adapting to a new technological age and prospering in that age? sigh... The worst part is these individuals are getting rich from high salaries while the rapidly drive their industries into the toilet. And, once everything gets flushed away, these individuals will walk away with their vast savings and live happily ever after while they've demolished an industry and left it in the stone ages. sigh...

THIS!

Their profit margins and revenues are soaring higher every year, and still they pretend that piracy has their entire industry on the brink of collapse.

More likely, they're just butthurt that some pirates are eating the scraps that fall from their table.

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