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Ask the Honcho of Internet Radio's SomaFM

Cliff posted more than 12 years ago | from the fried-CARP-anyone dept.

News 145

This week, Rusty, the general manager of Internet Radio's SomaFM, is the subject of the Slashdot Interview Spotlight. Some of you may remember Rusty from a recent Salon interview. Now he's making himself available to Slashdot and I'm sure you all can figure out a few questions to ask that weren't covered before. I'm sure many of you have questions about CARP, the future of Internet Radio, and the technology behind it. So let's get to it! As usual, we'll send off the 10 highest moderated questions on to Rusty, and we hope to have the answers for you sometime next week. <PLUG TYPE=SHAMELESS>BTW - If you haven't checked out the streams available at SomaFM, give it a try. Taste the Groove Salad, and the other 8 commercial free streams available on SomaFM. Ah, if only normal FM radio could be this good!</PLUG>

cancel ×

145 comments

no change there (1)

TR6 (577489) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510435)

seems that everything internet radio is going down hill. now even good radio programs like Art Bell cant even be heard without paying

Re:no change there (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3510626)

You must be kidding---there can't be anywhere in the US or most of Canada where Art Bell can't be heard on normal radio on one of the 1000 stations he's on every night. (those outside N America please disregard these comments)

Re:no change there (1)

YrWrstNtmr (564987) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510993)

You must be kidding---there can't be anywhere in the US or most of Canada where Art Bell can't be heard on normal radio on one of the 1000 stations he's on every night. (those outside N America please disregard these comments)

The question is, who wants to?

DO NOT LOOK AT THIS IMAGE (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3510436)

Re:DO NOT LOOK AT THIS IMAGE (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3510463)

It's not like it's a surprise. The only real surprise for me is that it's not Obi-Wan who does it.

Re:DO NOT LOOK AT THIS IMAGE (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3510469)

oh no anakin loses and arm and obiwan gets sliced up.

UH OH!

Yoda to the rescue! yippy!

Re:DO NOT LOOK AT THIS IMAGE (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3510574)

good thing cypher diaz ordered up all those clones to fight for the jedi or they would have got their ass whipped...

Re:DO NOT LOOK AT THIS IMAGE (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3510586)

oh crikey i'm jango fett the crock 'unta!

COUNT DOKOO GETS AWAY WITH PLAN FOR THE DEATH STAR (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3510442)

'nuff said

RIAA and CARP (3, Insightful)

jpt.d (444929) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510443)

How do you see the possibilities of winning against a CARP that smells of RIAA? Because RIAA has a lot of control over what traditional radio plays and control is what this is all about.

Money (2, Interesting)

punkball (240859) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510451)

I've got to ask, without commercials or any sort of advertising aside from mentioning the station your listening to, how does your company produce income?
I've listened to squid radio and groove salad for quite sometime and am a big fan so if your main source of income is donations, please make it known so we can help!

Re:Money (2, Informative)

kwerle (39371) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510528)

Dude, from http://www.somafm.com/ Yeah, the main page:

"SomaFM is commercial free and supported entirely by our listeners. Bandwidth is expensive! Your donation of any amount helps us stay on the air, providing commercial free music that can't be found anywhere else. Thanks!"

Right next to the PayPal and Amazon Honor System links...

Re:Money (1)

Otter (3800) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510543)

I've listened to squid radio and groove salad for quite sometime and am a big fan so if your main source of income is donations, please make it known so we can help!

I, on the other hand, had never heard of them until this story, but a quick glance at their site tells me:

SomaFM is commercial free and supported entirely by our listeners. Bandwidth is expensive! Your donation of any amount helps us stay on the air, providing commercial free music that can't be found anywhere else. Thanks!

SOMA (0)

baomike (143457) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510452)

Does this seem strange to anybody else?
Soma ( if I remember right) was the drug of choice
in BRAVE NEW WORLD. Put you right to sleep.

Re:SOMA (1)

dipfan (192591) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510513)

No, soma [gradesaver.com] in Brave New World is a pleasure-giving drug, some sort of narcotic. Sort of like legal crack, without any side-effects.

it's also (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3510559)

The sacred plant from Vedic religion; supposedly, it's the Fly Agaric mushroom, a toxic fungus which in smaller doeses is slighly hallucinogenic.

Re:SOMA (2)

IamTheRealMike (537420) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510580)

I believe it refers to the area of San Francisco in which it is based

South Of MArket (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3510643)

an area in sf

Re:SOMA (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3510667)

nice try on the dope reference. SOMA is a section of San Francisco where the station is based. SOMA = South of Market (Market Street - the main drag -no pun intended- that runs through the middle of downtown)

Re:SOMA (1)

cw0 (27154) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510920)

Check theirsite [somafm.com] for what it's actually about.

Fastest way to kill internet radio: (1)

kwerle (39371) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510453)

Slashdot the site.

slashdotted (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3511237)

j0j0j0j0j0j000j00j0

late post (-1)

Proctal Relapse (467579) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510455)

i hate my internet connection. it takes too long for first posting sometimes. it doesn't change the fact that everyone here but me is a cocksuckling nancy.

Re:late post (-1)

YourMissionForToday (556292) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510720)

me neither!

how much does the recording industry really care? (5, Interesting)

Laplace (143876) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510457)

I was curious to know how much the recording industry cares about small stations. Do you think that the Recording Industry Association of America is going to come after these tiny internet broadcasters, some of which are run out of someone's bedroom, and actually try to enforce this legislation? Given the bandwidth small stations operate on, their lack of mainstream exposure, and the tiny bang for the (litigious) buck, it seems that the record industry can spend their resources elsewhere with greater effect.

Re:how much does the recording industry really car (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3510638)

I'm sure that bitch, Rosen, would like total control, so even small netcasters would be chased after. What we need are for some of these internet broadcasters to use an anonymizing program to keep her dogs at bay

Re:how much does the recording industry really car (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3510653)

I'm sure that bitch, Rosen, wants total control, so even the small netcasters aren't safe. Looks like time for net radio to begin using anonymizers

Re:how much does the recording industry really car (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3510831)

To that I say that the RIAA will spend their litigation $$ where they will be most VISIBLE, not PROFITABLE. Even SomaFM or DI, which have thousands of concurrent listeners, have no money. They already run on donations. If there's a 'high profile' station run out of someone's bedroom that will make great headlines, they'll be made an example of.

spiderman kinda sucked (-1)

Anonymous Cowrad (571322) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510458)

On one hand, it wasn't that bad.

On the other hand, it was.

COUNT DOKOO CUTS ANAKINS ARM OFF WITH A LIGHTSABRE (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3510462)

But he doesn't tell him that he is his father...

Roundtable (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3510470)

What's the word from the may 10, 2002 roundtable?

Cost the guy a fortune in bandwidth why don't you! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3510471)

Linking directly to the stream was bad, bad, bad. Servers get slashdotted with a couple jpg's on em, what do you ppl think having a 128k stream linked will do?

anakins mom got bought by lukes aunt and uncle! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3510479)

to bad the bitch got killed by some tuskan raiders.

man what's up with that slave owner guys hat, what is he a gay french men or a bloated blue bubble bee?

err well never mind...

"Ah, if only normal FM radio could be this good!" (2, Insightful)

gmaestro (316742) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510485)

sometimes it is [npr.org]

Starting up your own station. (2, Interesting)

codeguy007 (179016) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510487)

Rusty, what advise do you have for those of use interested in starting up a non-commerical station as a hobby. Is this feasible? Where can we obtain the need information?

Advice on Starting up your own station (3, Interesting)

hardcorejon (31717) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510578)

There are a number of online resources to help you set up your own online radio station. A simple google search will provide lots of help.

But there are many reasons NOT to do it:
  • It's a bandwidth hog. Unless you have T1 speed internet access, or machines at a colo facility, you won't be able to support very many listeners.
  • It's expensive. Even in the absence of the RIAA, T1's and colo's are expensive. Fast servers that can stream to many people are expensive.
  • You don't have the time. There are 168 hours in a week. Are you going to be on the air for all of those? Not likely.

Fortunately, there is a solution to ALL these problems: OPENdj [opendj.com] .

OK, it's kind of a shameless plug, but here it is: OPENdj is the world's first public-access Internet radio station. Anyone can sign up for a show, and using nothing more than a 56k modem, you can broadcast to the world, from anywhere in the world.

And for the truly insane, if you don't like streaming through someone elses radio station, and you really want to run your own station, you can: The software that powers OPENdj.com [opendj.com] is open source software - check out OPENdj.org [opendj.org] for info on that.

Drop me a line if any of this has piqued your interest - I'm always interested in getting feedback on how to improve things.

Finally, a shameless developer plug: OPENdj is very much in active development. There are a lot of great features in place already (automatic archiving of all broadcasts, etc) and there are a lot of great features yet to be built, so if you're looking for an itch to scratch, this could be it.

- jonathan.

Re:Advice on Starting up your own station (1)

Weh (219305) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510860)

Shoutcast [shoutcast.com] has offered the possibility of starting your own station for quite a while already, it's free too.

Thoughts about Digital Rights Management? (5, Interesting)

SPYvSPY (166790) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510492)

Given the availability of programs like streamripper [sourceforge.net] (and others like it, I guess), do you have any plans to accomodate the myriad of digital rights management schemes in the pipeline? Which, if any, do you support or intend to implement? Do you think that you have an obligation to do so?

BTW, keep up the good work. I can say with total sincerity that your stations have introduced me music that I would otherwise never have heard. I thank you, (and so does my iPod). ;)

Pirate Mythology (5, Interesting)

tcd004 (134130) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510501)

Right now Internet Radio enjoys a sort of "pirate" image, which I think endears it to many people because they feel like they're supporting independent media.

However, my guess is that as it grows and becomes more profitable, most Internet radio is bound to end up owned by 2-5 big players, as is the case with most other media. Do you expect internet radio to get bought up like the movie studios, local TV stations and radio stations, or do you think it will be able to stay independent?

Would mergers and consolidation ruin internet radio, or would it help it?

Thanks
tcd004

Re:Pirate Mythology (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3510582)


However, my guess is that as it grows and becomes more profitable, most Internet radio is bound to end up owned by 2-5 big players, as is the case with most other media.


"Most other media" is a different beast. With Radio, or television, or newspapers, there are high startup costs, and lots of savings to be made by consolidation. Additionally, owning an outlet in ever market is the only way to have your signal be omnipresent. With internet radio, the startup costs are negligible (a DSL or cable line and some streaming software, and no licensing or other gov't restrictions), and the entire internet using population is a potential listener.


If there are 12 carribean music fans in Des Moines, no radio station will touch it. An internet radio station isn't limted by such demographics -- a Des Moines Caribbean internet radio station can be listened to anywhere.

Re:Pirate Mythology (1)

dustym (566056) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510825)

"Most other media" is a different beast. With Radio, or television, or newspapers, there are high startup costs, and lots of savings to be made by consolidation. Additionally, owning an outlet in ever market is the only way to have your signal be omnipresent. With internet radio, the startup costs are negligible (a DSL or cable line and some streaming software, and no licensing or other gov't restrictions), and the entire internet using population is a potential listener.
As this medium grows, however, the costs rise exponentially (read: bandwidth).

T3s ain't cheap yo.

oh boy! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3510503)

There are just so many different creatures in the colleseum battle!

I'm going to make my mommy buy me all the dolls! eerrrr action figures!

R2! now where are you taking me! this is such a drag!

HAHAHAHA! That's so fucking funny!

Will CARP (crap) affect overseas operators? (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3510511)

The beauty of the Internet is that no single government (or stupid government person) could stop an entire class of service - look at Internet gambling. That said, why not relocate to a co/lo service in India?

Or, better yet, just run amok of the law? Last I heard, the Library of Congress is a library, not an authorized body to create policy. Since they are attempting to do so, why not block them on the grounds that they are exceeding their charter, and therefore, acting against the constitution?

Also, the fact that internet based transmissions are treated differently than FM based transmissions is ridiculous. This is the foundation of the "separate but equal" crap that CARP is funnelling.

128k MP3 (and less) is not a perfect reproduction of sound, as the LoC contends. It is no more perfect than FM, and no less perfect. Both formats mangle stereo separation, both add audio artifacts, and both deduct from clarity and depth of the source's timbre. The only real difference is one is digital, and the other analog.

And both formats HELP drive record sales. The big difference to the RIAA is that they don't control the channels of distribution for MP3 servers. All SomaFM, or any other internet broadcaster needs is a music library, a fast connection to the net and powerful servers. In order to broadcast on the air, you need to give some slimy FCC official a kickback, and/or be owned by TimeWarnerAOL, Vivendi, or Viacom.

I can't help but see the future of the RIAA - all the offices burned to the ground and the leadership decapitated. This another one of those infuriating instances where their feeble attempts at limiting distribution channels so that everyone listens to the same, soulless crap that record producers are puking at us.

In the clone war the clones fight for the jedi! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3510520)

The clones are on the jedi's side!

But it's supposed to be a suprise so don't tell anyone!

The Force is strong with you, young spoiler! (0)

Anti-Microsoft Troll (577475) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510621)

But beware the dark side, which seeks to bitchslap you for ruining their silly film obsession.

Trust your feelings, and also, trust those who say that this is indeed Natalie Portman's luscious behind [www.envy.nu] .

What am I missing? (4, Interesting)

Otter (3800) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510524)

Radio stations are obliged to respect copyrights on music, right? No one except "Down with intellectual property types!" propose that commercial radio stations should be able to play Britney Spears songs without paying her for it.

So why should your money-earning radio station be different because it's sending a signal over IP packets instead of radio waves? I'm sympathetic (somewhat) to Joe Cable-Modem who is doing a just-for-fun broadcast, and my understanding of CARP is that is has some retroactive charges that are disturbing, but why should I defend your right to run a radio station for free?

I keep reading about all this great unrestricted music that's distributed through P2P networks. If that's so, leech off them.

Re:What am I missing? (5, Informative)

Otter (3800) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510612)

Answering my own question:
Reading a little more on this, I found a link to this NYT article [nytimes.com] , which is a lot more persuasive for being a lot less alarmist and greedy than most of the IP-related stuff that gets linked around here:
In a 1998 copyright law, Congress gave Webcasters an automatic license to stream copyrighted music so long as they paid a royalty fee to be agreed on later. Like broadcast radio stations, Webcasters already pay about 4 percent of their revenue to compensate composers and music publishers. But American broadcasters have never paid a royalty for using sound recordings, which are typically owned by a record label, successfully arguing that record labels are already compensated by the promotional benefits of having their music played over the air.

Webcasters argue that the recording industry should recognize that it derives a similar benefit from music that is streamed over the Internet. In an arbitration panel proceeding supervised by the copyright office, the Webcasters proposed a royalty rate about equal to those paid to composers and publishers, 5 percent of revenue. The recording industry asked for 15 percent of revenue, or a comparable per-performance fee.

In February, the arbitration panel proposed a formula of 0.0014 cent per song, per listener. Conventional broadcasters who stream simultaneously on the Internet would pay half that rate. The rate falls between what the two sides asked for. But because there is no option to pay a percentage of revenue, and because so few Webcasters are making money on advertising, it works out in some cases to far more than a station's total revenue.

OK, that makes a lot more sense. Editors and submitters -- you'd make better advocates by linking to something like this instead of to rabid, partisan pieces like the CARP link in this story.

Re:What am I missing? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3510629)

Over-The-Air radio doesn't pay anything to play Britney or N'Sync or any other band:

The singles that thy play are literally just commercials for the albums that they come on. The radio stations provide the music (free of charge) to radio stations, and use the 'independent' music promotors to pay radio stations for playing their tunes. If you'll recall, bands like Limp Bizkit first hit it big because their first single was marketed literally as a 3-minute commercial, allowing the label to pay per-play and get a gauranteed number of rotations in particular time slots.

I think the problem that the RIAA has with internet radio is that they are not dependent on RIAA money for survival, and thus are not bound to play only radio-friendly, commercially-produced singles that will maximize record sales and company profits.

Don't let anyone fool you that it has anything to do with 'quality'.

Re:What am I missing? (0)

zrodney (253699) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510641)

that's not quite true. the radio stations pay
an annual fee to the RIAA which gives them the
right to play the music on the air.

Re:What am I missing? (1)

doctechniqal (516085) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510969)

One point that often gets missed in these arguments:

Traditional broadcast operations require a significant upfront investment to get started (studio, transmitter, antenna etc), but the cost of 'adding a listener' is nil (the signal floats around in the air for anyone to pick up).

For Internet broadcasters, the equation is reversed: upfront investment is minimal (PC, internet connection, audio software) but adding listeners increases bandwidth usage (and thus operating costs) by a constant, and not insignificant, factor.

Troll (1)

trefoil (153310) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510529)

yes I am, on this one:
save internet radio [saveinternetradio.org]

Re:Troll (1)

sct (28839) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510635)

Speaking of which... This weekend I got a nice form letter from my Representative in the House explaining that he understands the issues around CARP and Internet Radio, but there is no law pending so he can do nothing about it. It is a fee recommendation that the FCC is considering.


Yes, that is true. But I think the letter is almost a plea to not get any of the blame, so he can be re-elected and not suffer the penalty on being for CARP. The least he could do is send a letter to the FCC recommending they do not accept CARP because the common man, his constituents don't like it much. It is nice to get the letter, but it could have been so much more.

Groove Out.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3510534)

http://www.radiofreeashland.org/

-participating member of the day of silence

(unsolicited post from an avid listener)

Re:Groove Out.. (1)

trefoil (153310) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510601)

did you go to SOU?

Re:Groove Out.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3510803)

No. I do happen to have a lot of friends who did though. Did you?

Re:Groove Out.. (1)

trefoil (153310) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510882)

yeah.. graduated in '99.. BS in Comp Sci

Cutting out RIAA music (5, Insightful)

mcc (14761) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510535)

Something that has been brought up a couple times in other threads, and that i am kind of curious about:

The CARP is something the RIAA is imposing, correct?
Does this or does this not mean that if an internet radio station were certain to only play music by non-RIAA artists, it could stay in business?
It would not be terribly easy to find material for a net radio station that only played independent music, but it would be possible, i think, and at the least i'd listen to it.
But am i just confused? Would that be feasible from a royalties standpoint? What exactly is the royalties relationship between independent record labels and internet radio, before or after CARP?

One more small question: the page on CARP on your site says that non-US broadcasters would not be subject to the CARP fees. How would this work out? Would this just mean that anyone in Canada would be able to netcast worldwide without having to pay any fees other than the ones imposed by their government? Or would stations outside the U.S. be barred from netcasting to U.S. citizens? If stations outside the U.S. are allowed to run free, what would the regulations say about a server in the U.S. that is just repeating what is being broadcast by an internet streaming radio station located outside the U.S.-- so that the lag created by the internet links that go across the atlantic ocean are minimized. Could a repeater of this sort be classified as just another router, or would the repeater be subject to the CARP payments?

Thanks for clarifying things.. just curious. Hopefully, the LoC will see through this blatant attempt by the RIAA to silence internet radio and none of the above questions will ever become an issue. I wish you luck..

Business Model (3, Interesting)

Everach (559166) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510549)

How does SomaFM compare fiscally to a traditional FM or AM business?

Specifically, are there any fiscal advantages to using an internet-only format to outweight the disadvanges (like a lack of big-name advertising)?

How can internet radio survive? (0, Troll)

Anomolous Cow Herd (457746) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510560)

With the downfall of internet banner ad sales that accompanied the burst of the dot-com bubble, it seems that no one running a serious venture on the internet can break even, much less make a profit.

My question is, how can you keep running indefinitely without any commercials during your audio streams? My understanding is that this is the bread and butter of more conventional radio stations, so how do things work with your company? Surely someone has to pay the hosting and bandwidth bills sooner or later.

Also, I'm wondering if the recent actions by the RIAA [theforce.net] scare you, even a little? While shooting and killing college students in a raid on MP3 servers is definitely unprecedented, I wasn't entirely surprised when I read it. It had to happen sooner or later, I suppose. So how do you deal with copyright and licensing problems, and what is your company's view on the whole intellectual property situation that seems to come up every time media on the internet is discussed?

GOATSE.CX PIC "[theforce.net]"? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3510608)

Gentle readers: DO NOT CLICK ON THE LINK in the parent post! It goes to a star wars spoiler picture that will cause your eyeballs to explode.

Re:How can internet radio survive? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3510730)

parent is a troll.

Please mod accoridingly

Re:How can internet radio survive? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3511190)




ATTN Moderators:

This poster is a fuckwit.


Yes, he has accused a fellow poster of being a troll, simply because said poster had the temerity to draw attention to the evils of the USian arts-industrial complex.

It would seem quite probable that Mr. Coward is one of a number of RIAA agents who have infiltrated many of the most influential online discussion groups in the hope of creating a groundswell of favourably tame opinion towards the fat-cats. I alone have counted 1,712 such "astroturf"-type posts on Slashdot [slashdot.org] , ZDNet [zdnet.com] , and, most shockingly of all, FYMA [fyma.net] within the last 24 hours.

I say that we, the readers of Slashdot [slashdot.org.] should make our stand by refusing to give in to this evil brain-meddling. To the barricades!




--

Jonathan,

posting anonymously to preserve my stock of strawberry jam.

Re:How can internet radio survive? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3511147)

The moderators for the parent obviously are too dense this morning. I guess it is Monday after all. At the very least they could click on the links, to avoid moderating up hidden goatse links. The username should be a top off too. Also, reading the post it is obvious it's a troll. Congrats to the Cow Herd for an excellent troll, much enjoyed by all.

Re:How can internet radio survive? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3511231)


Just how is that a goatsecx link?

It may not be the most on-topic link to Slashdot, but it is something that most of us will find interesting, or, at the very least, thought-provoking.

I'm sure you'll find some way to have me modded down for accusing you of this, but I have to say that it looks like you're deliberately trying to stop people looking at that site.

After all, what sort of a person would deliberately choose to follow a goatsex link? (unless that's your thing, of course, in which case, who am i to argue?). So, by claiming that it's goatsecx, without having even looked at it, your knee-jerk reaction has lumped you in with the most awful frothing-at-the-mouth bigots.

Why are you trying to divert our attention?

Perhaps you should take some deep breaths and then take a long hard look at yourself in the mirror.


BBC radio 6. (1)

dannywalk (237633) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510566)

It's pretty awful that these guys are being shut down, but at least there's always BBC radio 6: BBC's digital radio channel, which is also tranmitted via streaming real audio. Check it out here [bbc.co.uk] .

Re:BBC radio 6. (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3510713)

And see here [bbc.co.uk] for Radio 1, Radio 4 and Radio 6 in OGG format (better quality and no annoying realplayer).

real comment (2, Informative)

trefoil (153310) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510591)

Internet radio is alive in my local city. For a while, it seemed that it was going to die, due to the regulations being handed down. Advertisers were getting upset and the ilk, so for a while, they stopped broadcasting. Then a few months ago, they came back online, but without the regional advertising. Only the national station advertising was ever on during the commercial breaks, and during the rest, it'd just be silence.
An example of this is at: http://z100portland.com/ (top 40 station)

Plugs don't bother anybody (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3510592)

as long as you sarcastically recognize that it's a plug.

If you didn't put the sarcastic PLUG tags, then we'd have something to be angry about.

Re:Plugs don't bother anybody (-1)

MMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM (537317) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510664)

Talk for yourself. I'm so angry, I could break a planet!

Slashdot effect (2)

foobar104 (206452) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510594)

It's no coincidence that, a few minutes after this story went up, the number of listeners on Groove Salad shot up from the normal number of 100 or so to over 1,400.

I know this is no surprise-- Slashdot effect and whatnot-- but it's not too often that you get to see the effect measured in number of listeners, updated on the SomaFM.com web page in real time.

Re:Slashdot effect (2)

sulli (195030) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510778)

and let me pipe in: the groove salad is tasty this morning. thanks 4 the tip slashdot!

The internet's backbone (2)

Vodak (119225) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510613)

It has been argued that the deign of the internet will make large scale streaming media basicly impossible. How can you or any steaming media company expect to survive in this kind of condition? When sucess means connection failer.

Re:The internet's backbone (1)

drsoran (979) | more than 12 years ago | (#3511024)

It has been argued that the deign of the internet will make large scale streaming media basicly impossible.

This is only true if people continue to attempt to use unicast protocols to distribute their content. This issue was solved long ago by multicast. The trouble is, nobody seems to want to support it for the average consumer. In a perfect world that Internet broadcaster would only be sending one feed per upstream provider, their upstream providers would split it off to anyone requesting the feed downstream, and it would continue to split on until it reaches the end customer requesting the stream. It's really pretty efficient, especially when compared to the current notion of broadcasting 10,000 56Kbps streams. You could replace that with a single multicast stream that uses far less bandwidth but reaches a hundred thousand customers.

Re:The internet's backbone (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3511172)

As soon as someone figures out a way to make real money with online radio, you can bet we will see the beginnings of real multicast streaming technologies. It's only a matter of time.

kexp Radio (3, Informative)

cheinonen (318646) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510619)

If you want commercial free (basically), FM radio, try out kexp.org. Also 90.3 FM up in Seattle, they have multiple streaming options (56k and 96k mp3, Real Audio, and even a 1.4 Mb uncompressed WMA stream), live playlists, and a really diverse music selection.


They are paid for my sponsorship drives, like public television, but also supported by the Experience Music Project up here (note: EMP is a project of Paul Allen as well, so the station basically exists thanks to all that Microsoft money that Allen has). They also take song requests from people continaully, and it's introduced me to lots of bands that I otherwise never would have heard on most commercial radio, or even most streaming internet radio.

Re:kexp Radio (2)

foobar104 (206452) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510640)

(note: EMP is a project of Paul Allen as well, so the station basically exists thanks to all that Microsoft money that Allen has)

Note: The Portland Trailblazers are a project of Paul Allen as well, so the team basically exists thanks to all that Microsoft money Allen has.

No dis intended; I just don't want any Slashdot fanatics to assume there's more of a relationship between the Experience Music Project and Microsoft than there really is. Paul Allen is just a really rich guy that likes to spend his money on cool stuff.

So nobody call for an EMP boycott. Or, for that matter, a Blazers boycott.

Re:kexp Radio (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3510877)

I'd just like to say thanks, cheinonen, for supporting kexp.org as well as public television. Your sponsorship drive was a big help this year; keep it coming!

ask slashdot! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3510623)

If c3po and r2 where at lukes house on mose isley with anakin and amadala why the fuck don't they remember it when they end up back their in ep 4?

CARP and ASCAP/SESAC/BMI (1)

kramit (137973) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510647)

How does CARP affect the rates broadcasters are already required to pay to ASCAP, SESAC, and BMI?

Does it replaces those fees, or will those fees be adjusted to match?

It seems to me that CARP adds to the fees, and means paying twice for the same thing.

-----Kermit

meaning of FM, and kuro5hin (1)

tps12 (105590) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510679)

Two questions.

What does the "FM" mean when applied to Internet radio?

Are you the same Rusty as the Rusty who runs kuro5hin?

Honcho of internet radio (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3510680)

(whine)But I was going to Tashi station to pick up some power converters!

<PLUG TYPE=SHAMELESS>..</PLUG> (1)

elphkotm (574063) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510684)

Question is, would this XML validate properly without the shameless contained in quotes?

FM radio can be this good... (1)

espilce (105654) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510699)

if its pirate radio! Not only is it fun to listen to, it's even more fun to "work" at. I say "work" because no one gets paid, and its more fun than any job I've ever had... Seriously, there is not a single commercial station that could ever compete with the quality of pirate radio. The FCC is not the enemy necessarily, it is merely a tool of corporate radio used to shut down superior channels that take away from their ad revenue.

Go 97.5 Rice Radio! (Aka Humboldt Free Radio Alliance)

Just broadcast from elsewhere (2, Interesting)

mister sticky (301125) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510709)

Isn't it possible to just broadcast your stream from a server in a country where CARP isn't law? ie. Canada?

What about talk radio? (2, Interesting)

Ruger (237212) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510715)

Are there plans for Soma to produce some all talk channel(s)? NPR and AM Radio are the main sources for talk radio fans, but I'd love to be able to tune into TALK on my PC. My local AM station has a variety of talk programs from your typical morning news and traffic, to sports(NBA, NHL, MLB, NFL, racin'), to Tech Talk (Mostly PCs), as well as golf and financial news and investing.

Ruger

'the other 8 commercial free streams' (1)

CathedralRulz (566696) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510757)

Bandwidth costs money. Administration costs money. Paying composer royalties for classical composition music (like broadcast radio stations do) costs money.

So how do you have commercial free streams? Contributions?

WOW! (1)

xanadu-xtroot.com (450073) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510760)

I'm streaming the Drone Zone [somafm.com] right now. This is some serioulsy good Ambient stuff. I'm a BIG fan of Brian Eno (and other folks along those same lines). I wish I knew about this earlier. It's a shame they're going off the air soon. :-(

This is quite good, if you like this sort of stuff.

Re:WOW! (1)

xanadu-xtroot.com (450073) | more than 12 years ago | (#3511049)

P.S.

Yes, I've now faxed my congress-folks about this stuff. You too can do it easily [somafm.com] with a few keyboard strokes and a mouse click.

Just a thought...

Royalties loophole? (5, Interesting)

Dan Crash (22904) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510768)

The statutory royalty rate for Internet simulcasts of FM radio broadcasts is only half that of Internet-only broadcasts. So couldn't any web station cut their royalties in half by spending $34.95 (plus shipping) to buy a micro-FM transmitter [ramseyelectronics.com] ?

Here's what the law [copyright.gov] says in Title 17, 114. Scope of exclusive rights in sound recordings:
The performance of a sound recording publicly by means of a digital audio transmission, other than as a part of an interactive service, is not an infringement of section 106(6) if the performance is part of ...a nonsubscription broadcast transmission.
It doesn't require you to be a licensed or noncommercial broadcaster, simply that your performance is broadcast freely over the airwaves.

Has the webcasting industry looked into this loophole at all? Seems to me that cutting your operating expenses roughly in half could be the difference between economic life and death for most companies.

Disclaimer: I am not a lawyer (thank God!), but I am a pirate radio broadcaster.

Re:Royalties loophole? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3511251)

If they were broadcasting over the airwaves, they would have to also buy a liscense for broadcasting. That would more than destroy the potential gain in savings.

question (3, Interesting)

tezzery (549213) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510837)

If the RIAA proposed rates do get approved, where do you see this going in a few years? How will this affect media monsters such as Clearchannel? Do you think commercial stations will begin supporting more independent labels, (or even better) artists will slowly realize who the enemy is and not sign to RIAA labels? (I know it might seem far-fetched but it's wishful thinking). What's your opinion on the bigger outcome of this battle?

How should we maintain awareness? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3510847)

As I understand it, we've reached the current situation because none of the small, non-profit web broadcasters participated in the CARP negotiations. This resulted in the deal being struck (pretty much) between the RIAA and Clear Channel et al, since they were the groups that participated in drafting the DMCA in the first place. What can we do to ensure that, next time around, the letter writers can be pulled into action before, not after the legislation is passed and the negotiations complete?

BTW, thanks for over a year of great music, and yes, I have written my congressman because of your efforts.

Being that i AM soma;) (1)

somapoi (567221) | more than 12 years ago | (#3510873)

Why don't you pay royalties? j/k. I AM curious though, as to how the name came about.

Fraunhofer, and OGG Vorbis (5, Interesting)

E1ven (50485) | more than 12 years ago | (#3511052)

What amount do you currently pay in MP3 liscensing, in order to stream SomaFM over the internet?

With all the threats and attacks to MP3 streaming by Fraunhofer, have you considered moving to streaming OGG Vorbis [vorbis.com] files?

As Winamp is now shipping with native support, this could be a good way of shaving down some of the fees regarding your business.

Re:Fraunhofer, and OGG Vorbis (1)

Mulletproof (513805) | more than 12 years ago | (#3511095)

Hope my Rio Volt SP250 [riovolt.com] gets a firmware update to support OGG if that's the case ^__^

RIAA/CARP only have the power you give them. (1)

Mulletproof (513805) | more than 12 years ago | (#3511070)

First, the laws that govern society are only laws because of the mutual consent of the majority of people. Once a law is no longer deemed to be in their best intrest by the people themselves, it becomes little more than words on paper, like a certain tax on tea. It takes very little imagination to see this being the case with internet radio and music in general since nobody that I know of respects either the RIAA, CARP or the politicans backing their measures. Downloading copywrited MP3s is illegle, yet how many of us do it anyway? A law only has the force we, the people subject to the law, give it. Like the US Revolutionary War, the Establishment is looking to maintain it's powerbase at the expense of it's customers, a situation that never remains stable in the long run, either resulting in increased tyranny (judge the effects of the RIAA for yourself) or revolution in some form, normally detrimental to the Establishment. For that reason alone, even if the dreaded crackdown against internet radio should occure, nobody will listen or care about the new laws. It will go underground or beyond the limits of RIAA enforcement like so many other "counter-culture" movements have done. it's a little too late to kill MP3 and it's a little to late to kill net radio.

And I seem to rememeber that way back when, artists actually paid the station to have their music on the air when radio first started up...

Please support SomaFM (1)

freq (15128) | more than 12 years ago | (#3511089)

I sent my $10 via paypal to SomaFM. [somafm.com]

If you are a regular listener like me, you should do the same thing.

To save a little bit of their bandwidth i'm listening to betalounge [betalounge.com] right now :) more tasty live electronic goodness.

new technologies? (2)

notsoanonymouscoward (102492) | more than 12 years ago | (#3511137)

"ever since I was a little perl script I wanted to be a DJ on somaFM"

I heard that for the first time about 5 months ago. I got hooked =) Groove Salad helps me sleep at night, thanks! Also, thanks for the free cd sent with my donation to the station. And now on to the question:

due to the increasing cost per user of centralized streaming, have you been exploring other possibilites? Something like radio relays? Would you even WANT people "rebroadcasting" for you?

Pay for GrooveSalad (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3511182)

Rusty,

I have been a Groove Salad fan for a long time now, I am constantly streaming a 128k stream here in my dorm room. It is the absolute best radio station I have ever listened too. Thanks.

Now for my question. Have you ever considered going to a pay system? I would gladly pay $10.00 a month for the privlidge to listen to Groove Salad. I know thats not much, but I am a poor college student. If you did decide to charge for listeners, how much would you charge, and how would you do so? The only reason I have not donated something to the site is because I do not like PayPal. Have you ever considered taking Visa/Master Card/Amex directly? Personally I would give you $120 a year for a subscription billed in 6 month increments.

Thanks for such a great station!

Brent Jackson
Boone, NC
Student
Appalachian State University

If the content barons win..... (3, Interesting)

Bobzibub (20561) | more than 12 years ago | (#3511222)

...the RIAA *does* have a lot more money than us...And just look at that farm bill.. Ugh!
What requirements would a distributed, untracible, pirate* broadcast network have? (besides the obvious)
I have some thoughts:
- Java. (fast to write/platform indy)
- IP/UDP? (less trace-able connections than /w TCP/IP)
- Ogg. (I like Ogg)
- Peers can hand off streams to less busy servers. And probably should after a fixed amount of time.
- use standard clients (xmms, etc) in combination with server (peer) component? Or force use of client/peer?
- how to initially connect to the network?

Sounds like a fun project to me!

luv SomaFM. 'xcept when ./'d. : )

Cheers,
-B
* I say "Pirate" here in jest, of course...I just don't want the *RIAA* to get any of my money. Artists need better pimps.
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