Internet Radio May Stream North to Canada

Given the concern about the future viability of Internet radio in the U.S., there has been mounting speculation that some webcasters may consider setting up shop in Canada, where the U.S. rates do not apply. For example, Mercora, a service that allows individuals to launch their own webcasts, has established a Canadian site that falls outside U.S. regulatory and royalty rules.
Webcasters considering a move to Canada will find that the legal framework for Internet radio trades costs for complexity. There are two main areas of concern from a Canadian perspective – broadcast regulation and copyright fees.
Those expecting strict broadcast regulation from the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission will be pleasantly surprised to learn that webcasters operate outside of conventional broadcast regulation in Canada. The 1999 CRTC New Media Decision exempts webcasters, thereby relieving them of the need to obtain licenses or meet Canadian content requirements.
The copyright concerns associated with webcasting are far more challenging. While there are options that allow non-commercial webcasters to stream music without paying significant royalties – Soundclick lists more than 350,000 songs that are freely available under Creative Commons licenses – streaming commercial music will require royalty and license payments.
Michael Geist – Internet Radio May Stream North to Canada