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Web Radio's Fate To Be Determined Today

"Web radio stations live to fight another day," writes Cnet's Greg Sandoval. The House of Representatives last week unanimously passed a bill that was expected to be a close vote, allowing Web radio stations to negotiate lower royalty rates with the music industry than what was mandated by Congress last year. The unanimous nature of vote has kept the National Association of Broadcasters from opposing the bill when it arrives in front of the Senate later today.

The so-called Webcaster Settlement Act aims to give Web radio broadcasters the right to negotiate the royalty rates they'll pay the music industry for streaming their music over the Internet. Any deal would have to be approved by the government. "The bill having passed unanimously in the House certainly gives it momentum heading into the Senate," a spokesperson for the NAB said. The Webcaster Settlement Act gives Internet radio stations the ability to strike an agreement with the music industry after Congress adjourns for the year later today.

"It would be a killer blow" if the bill does not pass the Senate today, said Pandora co-founder Tim Westergren, a huge proponent. "If we don't get it passed now, it would mean waiting for a whole new Congress and administration and lots of uncertainty."

Read the whole story at Cnet »

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