BBC News
watch One-Minute World News
Last Updated: Wednesday, 9 January 2008, 11:42 GMT
Pandora to cut off UK listeners
Boy choosing music, BBC/Corbis
Pandora builds a radio station around the music you like
British fans of the Pandora net radio service will be cut off on 15 January.

Pandora said it was being forced to stop streaming music to British users of the service thanks to an unresolved royalty row.

The argument hinges on the rates Pandora pays to UK music rights groups to stream music to British users.

In an e-mail sent to UK listeners, Pandora founder Tim Westergren said he was "very, very sorry" for the abrupt end to the service.

Switch off

In the US net radio services are licensed under the terms of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act but any company wishing to stream music overseas has to negotiate deals on a nation by nation basis.

In May 2007, Pandora cut off all its listeners who were not based in the US but kept streaming music to UK users while negotiations over a licensing deal for Britain continued.

At that time Pandora began tracking users via the unique net address their computer is using which can be used to reveal the geographical location of that machine.

In the e-mail sent to all those reaching Pandora via a UK net address, Mr Westergren said efforts to negotiate an "economically workable license fee" had proved "impossible".

The rates demanded per track by UK licensing authorities were too high to support, he wrote.

Wrote Mr Westergren: "We have been told to sign these totally unworkable license rates or switch off, that is what we are doing."

He added: "We're going to keep fighting for a fair and workable rate structure that will allow us to bring Pandora back to you."

Pandora works by building personal radio stations for users based around their individual musical tastes.

Royalty fee 'to damage net radio'
12 Jul 07 |  Technology
Pandora to block non-US listeners
03 May 07 |  Technology
Royalties threaten internet radio
08 Mar 07 |  Technology
Pandora's never-ending jukebox
21 Aug 06 |  Technology
Sony drops locks on music albums
07 Jan 08 |  Technology
The DRM maze for consumers
11 Dec 07 |  Technology

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit


Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific