The Party of the Future

As we’ve noted before, internet radio is about to be destroyed by the decision of the Copyright Royalty Board to radically increase royalty fees for playing music over the internet.

The argument is simple – if FM stations don’t have to pay, why should streaming ones?

If Democrats (insert your specific politician here) are smart, they will see this as an opportunity to radicalize young voters to their side. Remember – how a person votes in their twenties is usually how they vote for life. Millenials are trending Dem, but locking them in is smart, and showing that Democrats understand the new world, and are on the side of the future, not the past, is how you do it.

But, fundamentally, IP law is screwed up, bigtime.

There’s an online petition here. Signing it is a start, but only a start and won’t save internet radio.

What the issue needs is a sponsor – a congressperson with guts and vision, who’s willing to sponsor a bill to stop this. And then we move to whip lists and we pile the pressure on.

The politician who does this will reap great rewards – and so will the party.

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Ian Welsh

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  • This issue is contained in a larger juicy one. The conservative authoritarian mind would prefer the Internet never happened and would like to see it just go away, unless they can make a caboodle of cash by owning it and charging handsomely for using it. This is a huge opportunity for the progressives, who are not only younger but are populated by the better educated, that is, people who understand technology and use, and have the expectation that the Internet is now a public utility rather than a outlying province of Big Business. So net neutrality, copyright, free access, and the like are big issues to this constituency, whereas the conservative authoritarians are not only in the dark on political importance of these issues, but also allies of Big Business and beholden to their interests, so they are inevitably on the wrong side of the fence.

    Unfortunately, the Dem Establishment has not yet picked up on this opportunity and needs to be educated by the netroots. But at least they are listening. Good strategy, Ian, to get at least on member of Congress to spearhead this realization and start taking political advantage of it. As you say, political branding occurs early, and the up and coming generation is both educated on this and also naturally progressive.

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