1320Radio has been streaming music and broadcasting pre-recorded, hosted features for four years via the subscription and hosting platform Radiojar, which operates from Greece, but is supported by international investors. Until now, the station has been licensed through Radiojar as the domain and point of origin for the service.
Radiojar is withdrawing from the licensing of 1320Radio and every other legacy station that signed up to their original subscription service, which was inclusive of hosting and licensing.
They are doing this by discontinuing the provision of the stand-alone player which streams (with its unique URL) from the Radiojar domain, effective from 1st June 2017.
The outcome is that the station will cease to broadcast after this date.
It may seem too good to be true that the licensing and hosting of an internet radio station could possibly be provided as an affordable subscription package. Nevertheless, 1320Radio went to great lengths even before it began broadcasting to make sure Radiojar was fulfilling those particular terms of its offer to subscribers.
To be clear, as far as internet radio is concerned, PRS long ago confirmed to 1320Radio that the owner of the domain from which any internet station is streaming is obliged to licence that stream in the country of its origin.
The screenshots below show the distinction between the 1320Radio journalism website domain and the radio jar streaming platform domain (right click and select ‘view image’).
PRS and PPL in the UK receive overseas income from pooled revenues shared out among licensing agencies that are long-standing, participating members of a European licensing hub. This information is actually quite difficult to find and is nowhere explained or amplified by any internet radio provider.
Radiojar has only given four weeks notice by email and have not made a public statement. They have given insufficient notice for 1320Radio to look at alternatives and consider its options. Neither has Radiojar offered a credible explanation for their decision to withdraw licensing as part of the subscription package to their service (*).
A low cost/no cost, truly independent initiative like 1320Radio is really only feasible if monthly payment deals for licensing are available. Currently, such options do not exist, and we consider this to be a major obstacle to the development of creative internet radio that could offer meaningful alternatives to mainstream media in Scotland.
We also believe that a constant stream of music, punctuated by diverting, hosted, curated music much of which has originated in Scotland can only be a good thing for the country’s cultural economy, and deserves much greater interest and support than it has hitherto received.
Clearly, 1320Radio will never consider unlicensed broadcasting. We will, however, will continue to create podcasts and shows broadcast on Mixcloud, and creating new features for syndication on other internet radio platforms.
Our flagship show The Monday Night Hangover will also continue, alongside Just Good Tunes and new shows that are currently in the pipeline.
(*) If anyone is in any doubt about the credibility of the licensing arrangements that Radiojar made a central plank of their offer, we have copies of emails and screenshots of correspondence from their CEO that verify Radiojar’s commitments and obligations as the domain owner with respect to licensing the stream.