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My Own Internet Radio Station

Answers to Questions From Site Visitors

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Updated December 27, 2005
Even though I answer all emails personally, from time-to-time I like to list some of the more important ones so all visitors to the site can benefit. Here are several answers to questions I've received recently about personal Webcasting.

Question: "I'm in the process of developing internet only radio station. I was wondering if you have to pay royalties if you sound bites of comics, and movie snipits?" – Peter

Answer: Using spoken word stand-up routines of comedians from published works (CDs, vinyl records, etc.) is subject to royalty payment if it is copyrighted. The only way around this is by obtaining permission to use the audio. Running your Internet Radio station through Live365 (Buy Direct) will solve this royalty problem since part of your monthly fee goes toward paying it.

On a related issue, for a long time I was told one could legally use 7 seconds of audio from a recording without a copyright violation (in other words: fair use). But, contrary to this thinking, "There is no fixed amount of permitted usage that is set forth in the fair use statute…" according to Ivan Hoffman, B.A., J.D.

Yet, you will find hundreds, if not thousands, of websites that feature snippets of audio from various sources. Although technically in violation, they seem to survive most likely because it is very difficult to police the unauthorized use of these small sound bites and many copyright holders are complacent or acquiescent about their use.

Question: "Our school is putting together a community radio station, we are hoping to broadcast music around the school out to the internet and eventually the local community , but we need to know what licences we need for each of these. Any help would be much apprecitated." - Matt & Dan

Answer: I’m assuming your community station is also a non-profit operation. Luckily, the Librarian of Congress, based on a recommendation by the Register of Copyrights, has established a smaller fee than what commercial webcasters pay." See this chart.

Question: "I read your guide on about and was just wondering if you have to be a certain age to start an internet based radio station..." – Emily

Answer: Anyone of any age may create their own Internet radio station. If you use a streaming provider like Live365.com (Buy Direct), there may be a minimum age for using the service. Check with them.

Question: "I'd like to look into having my own 30 minute weekly program. Can you recommend any reading material or training programs for something like this?" – Pamela

Answer: I have created two free email courses to cover this:

How to Create Your Own Radio Show

How To Create Your Own Internet Radio Station

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