Achtung! Unhappy New Year for UK Pandora Listeners

Pandora.com will cease to broadcast to UK listeners as of January 15th, 2008. The reason for this bad news? Royalty rates demanded by recording bodies would put Pandora.com, one of the most popular and innovative internet radio services, out of business.

Tim Westergren, founder of Pandora, sadly says in an e-mail to UK listeners:

“Both the PPL (which represents the record labels) and the MCPS/PRS Alliance (which represents music publishers) have demanded per track performance minima rates which are far too high to allow ad supported radio to operate and so, hugely disappointing and depressing to us as it is, we have to block the last territory outside of the US.”

I’ll write more on this later, but I want to address the impact on PandoraJam users first.

What effect will this have on PandoraJam USA users?

None. PandoraJam will continue to provide an enhanced experience for Pandora.com listeners based in the USA, and provide compatibility with the Pandora.com site for as long as possible.

What effect will this have on PandoraJam UK users?

  • You have one more week of usage, so start listening, scrobbling, etc. Take no prisoners!
  • If you have access to a USA based proxy, or are willing to use Tor, check out this blog post. That way, even after Pandora.com switches off the UK, you can keep listening.
  • If you purchased PandoraJam from 1st December 2007, you can ask for a refund and get your $15 back. E-mail me at support@pandorajam.com. This is going to be a logistical nightmare to sort out… sigh… Of course you don’t have to ask for a refund, if you feel you got your £7.50 worth of fun and want to support an indie developer with beer money 🙂
  • If you purchased PandoraJam before the 1st December 2007, e-mail me and I will issue you a discount coupon for some of our other software. There are plenty of other sites which you can listen to audio from, and record from, but of course, Pandora is one of the best. If you really need the few quid back, then get in touch.

Thanks for reading on what is a bad day for Internet radio.

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This entry was posted in music, pandora, pandorajam. Bookmark the permalink.

7 Responses to Achtung! Unhappy New Year for UK Pandora Listeners

  1. Chris says:

    Hey Simon, I started a petition about this issue last year, as I interviewed Tim for a PC tech mag. Unfortunately, I wasn’t really able to get things rolling as Pandora was still active in the UK. I’d like to think that people cared enough to demand that the music industry saw reason on this subject. They were asking Tim for 45 per cent of his gross revenue for the mechanical royalties alone and that’s even before performer royalties were factored in! It’s a joke and people need to know and get involved.Here’s the link: http://petitions.pm.gov.uk/SaveNetRadioUK/If you can push this out to people, it would help immensely. I really hope some good old ‘people power’ can make a difference.

  2. Simon says:

    I wonder how much of these exorbitant royalties really end up in the hands of the artists…

  3. Anonymous says:

    How would you feel about developing a similar programme to PandoraJam, but Mac Last.fm users?

  4. Simon says:

    I’ve considered it but is last.fm a popular player? I know a lot of people use the service for scrobbling. What about other music services? Which ones are good? I’ve seen a lot of Flash based ones appear over the past year, all with interesting aspects to them, but I don’t think any of them are as good as Pandora.

  5. Anonymous says:

    As a recent user of PandoraJam I’m gutted. I’d certainly buy a Last.fm player if you were to develop one (or a solution that allowed recording of Last.fm streams in some way).

  6. Austen says:

    I would also buy one or last.fm… perhaps a better, more mac-like last.fm client?

  7. Anonymous says:

    Have you seen this?http://globalpandora.com/Any way to make pandorajam point at that?BTW I’m a UK user and don’t want a refund but appreciate the offer.

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