Alright.

I'm thinking about broadcasting.

I thinking about music licensing royalty rates for internet radio stations, and internet radio station funding.

I'm coming to believe that I will never actually be able to participate in a real radio station, because the FCC sucks and won't let us have any more, even though we only get like two stations up here.

I'm planning out a streaming video station for original and public domain content, eventually, but a real internet radio station appeals.

Like, I could make a more interesting radio station than radio paradise or whatever. I could record 30 or 40 bumpers and build a few dozen hours of playlists comprising a mix of 60s garage and psych, jazz, blues, and all the weird indie shit I've been rocking for the last decade.

I'm positive folks would enjoy listening to it.

I don't have time to do it Right, but I could cheat a little with computers.

It can't be That expensive.

So the question:

Do I talk to ASCAP, BMI, or sound exchange? Or all three?

Several folks suggested live365 which looks like a good option.

Their pricing model is fair, they have a method to opt out of advertisements, and if you choose not to do that it's only 4 minutes of ads per hour.

The base package is limited to 1500 total listener hours per month, but if we're exceeding that I should be able to sell enough ads directly to bump us up to the next level.

I can guarantee an audience from the coffee shop, as this would supplement/replace the stations we use now.

I might be able to convince a few other businesses in town to make us their shop radio as well.

5 shops at 10 hours/day puts us at the limit of the first package, but it also puts our music and advertisements in the ears of ~500 - 1000 people (in a very concentrated geographic area) every day, which means we could probably sell an ad or two to bounce up to the next level.

Follow

I need to hear some of their default ads to decide if I'm willing to put up with them or if I'll pay the extra fee to avoid them.

(And if I'm going to avoid them, I gotta figure out how we'll fund keeping the station on the air.)

(I mean, I gotta figure that out either way. Even with their ads, it's not a Free service.)

Cool. So tomorrow I'll put together a few dozen hours' worth of content, record ten bumpers, and buy a month's subscription.

I'll load up the content, schedule a few programs, and find out what the experience is like as a listener.

If I don't hate it, I'll put a little more effort in to the curation, record some better bumpers, and register a domain name.

Can anyone comment on the owners of the .fm tld?

It's like, Micronesia or something, right? Any reasons I shouldn't register a .fm domain?

Alright. Domain is registered. I've signed up for a month of live365. I'm building my library and playlists. I might start broadcasting later today.

Cool. The station is up.

As of right now, there are 27 artists, more than 300 tracks, and roughly 20 hours of music.

I have not recorded any bumpers or station IDs yet

(please feel free to submit your own. Use the format "Hi I'm [name] from [thing or place] and this is mountain town radio")

I'm heading to lunch while another big batch of tracks uploads. My goal is to add a little more variety to things before I start promoting it.

If you'd like to listen along: streaming.live365.com/a74617 is the quick link to the official player and api.live365.com/play/a74617.m3 is the m3u (which shouldn't be region locked.)

(I'll do a blog post and an announcement when I get the programming blocks set up, we're on autoDJ right now.)

Ooh. That mumzies track has to come out. That was not good.

This Rod Hamdallah track can stay right where it is, though.

Just went from Eli Pop to Eddie Boyd and his Chess Men and Hoooo is this station ever sitting exactly where I need it to.

I'm really going to enjoy building this thing out in to something real.

@thegibson looks like they start at $70, so that's one reason.

But I think it's the only tld that makes sense for what I'm doing so I guess I'll go for it anyway.

@ajroach42 Looks like Micronesia owns their own domain, it's not colonial, so should be fine.

@ajroach42 might just want to check how their support is. Have had some issues owning a .it domain while not knowing Italian or living in a European timezone

@ajroach42 Meh, not the worst? Afaict the US has colonized FSM hard since WWII for military access to east Asia. They're technically independent since the 80s but to me it looks vaguely like struggling to escape puppet status. That wouldn't be relevant except that their in-country telecom conveniently outsources its .fm registry to a private San Francisco company with strong notes of slimy tech entrepreneur. Still, there's worse.

icannwiki.org/BRS_Media
mobile.twitter.com/dotFM/statu

@ajroach42 is listening from foreign countries allowed? (sometimes that depends on your licensing agreement and/or price point for the streaming service)

@vfrmedia Officially: US, Canada, and UK are allowed.

It looks like they might have *light* technical measures in place to prevent other places from listening, but I dunno what that'll look like in practice.

@ajroach42 I'd totally listen to this at work. I'm excited!

@TaxDan dan, what I need is for you to get on the horn with every local musician you still talk to, to get their work featured on our station. I will need them to provide written permission, I believe an email should be sufficient.

Brabant and Jon Williams were here yesterday, and I'm confident that I will be able to secure everything they've ever done, I have Brett Schieber's stuff, golden shrines, Eli Pop, modern nomad, and I can talk to Amy for the boy girlfriends, and Janna for oat milk.

@TaxDan of course, I need honesty again and like Mike. And what else?

@TaxDan I'm positive that I'm forgetting people. Krista! But I'm so far removed from that scene I can't even really suss out who else.

@ajroach42 There's an indie punk label in GA called 59x that has some great bands on it that I like. Maybe I can send them your way?

Like mike isn't really a thing anymore (no bad blood, we just didn't want to keep it going) but I don't think anyone would mind our music playing.

@TaxDan most of the bands I'll play don't exist anymore. Thats fine. The music is what matters, it'll outlive you.

@ajroach42 I'll send you an email from me RE: Like Mike. I think it'd be less awkward to get you the 59x email and have you email them.

@ajroach42 Peter@59xrecords.com is the email for them. Here's some links to music from their bands that are good.

thecarolyn.bandcamp.com/
residentone.bandcamp.com/
thekillakeehouse.bandcamp.com/

I can't find a specific link for Heathersett stuff but the two singles they have out are here:
soundcloud.com/59xrecords

@ajroach42 I presume you're no longer broadcasting (or the M3u *is* region-locked) as the feed is just blank right now.

@DHeadshot I am still broadcasting, and just tried the m3u from my mobile device.

It might be region locked somehow.

Do you get an error if you try at live365.com/station/Mountain-T

@ajroach42 Nope that works
Technically, I don't get an error with the M3U, just "End of file"...
@ajroach42 Although there's possibly a delay? Or maybe the browser is delayed?

@DHeadshot yeah there's definitely synchronization issues if you've got two clients going, two different browsers or a browser and a media player inevitably end up buffering different amounts sometimes it's a really dramatic difference.

@ajroach42 (I just extracted it from the JSON that the page requests from the server - thank you Firefox's developer tools)

@ajroach42 last time I did the numbers I was looking at licencing via APRA for an Australian-based setup, and self-hosting came out ahead by heaps because they have a "mini" class licence that covers small non-commercial operations for only a couple of hundred bucks a year, hosting costs for audio streaming can be pretty negligible on small scale too.

I never got as far as checking into how broadly applicable that gets when internet radio is hardly geolocked.

@mike the us got rid of their small streamer rates circa 2015 iirc.

@ajroach42 damn that's unfortunate. The Australian one has heaps of scope for a small startup like this, the terms are pretty generous.

apraamcos.com.au/music-licence

Have to be an Australian business entity to register of course, but I'm not seeing any restrictions beyond that for having overseas presenters etc as long as it's all logged.

Might start hammering something together when I get back from my trip mid-August, heh.

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