Bid to deny Pandora an FM station reflects out-of-date music royalty system

Pandora on FM would be so cool. I love Pandora!

Gigaom

The town of Box Elder, South Dakota, is an unlikely battleground in the ongoing clash between the music industry and streaming service Pandora. A group representing musicians this week asked the FCC to deny Pandora(s p) a license to operate an FM radio station there because the company will not serve the “needs and interests of the residents of Box Elder.”

The good folk of Box Elder — nestled between the Black Hills and the Badlands — may wonder how their airwaves became the subject of a tussle between a controversial Silicon Valley company and the Washington-based ASCAP, a group that collects copyright royalties for songwriters. But in the larger fight over the price of music in the digital age, the dispute over Box Elder’s FM station makes a weird kind of  sense.

Recall that Pandora is lobbying Congress to lower the rates it must pay every time it plays…

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