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RAIN 7/2: SoundExchange chief Simson stepping down

Posted on: 07/02/2010

RAIN returns Tuesday, July 6. Have a great Fourth of July weekend!

AFTER 10 YEARS, SIMSON LEAVING SX AT END OF 2010

John Simson, the executive director of SoundExchange, will be leaving the non-profit royalty collection group at the end of the year. Simson will return to his “creative roots,” SoundExchange said.

Simson joined SoundExchange in 2000 as its first full-time employee. “After 10 years of working with digital services, we’ve achieved many of our important goals,” Simson said. “We’ve established fair rates for performers and labels and built the largest performer and recording label society in the world.”

Simson also pointed out that SoundExchange has paid out over $220 million to performers and record labels in the past 10 months. That’s nearly half of the $470 million SoundExchange says its paid out since 2003. The organization has come under scrutiny of late after Digital Music News reported SoundExchange had over $200 million in “undistributed funds” (RAIN coverage here and here). Find SoundExchange’s press release here.

FORD MANAGER OF SYNC APPS: IN-CAR NET RADIO AN OPPORTUNITY FOR BROADCASTERS

Ford is leading the way to in-car Internet radio with their app-friendly update to Sync, which will connect to drivers’ smartphone apps. Julius Marchwicki, Ford’s Sync AppLink Product Manager, recently spoke to Radio World about the coming of in-car Internet radio and its effect on broadcast radio.

First off, in-car streaming radio won’t kill AM/FM, says Marchwicki, if broadcasters take advantage of the opportunity. “Those radio broadcasters who are launching their own wireless apps are seeing their audiences increase, not decrease,” Marchwicki said. “If anything, [in-car Internet radio] is proving to be a new opportunity for those broadcasters savvy enough to seize it.”

He also explained Ford’s decision to use consumers’ smartphones to get online, rather than build Internet connectivity directly in the dashboard. “A vehicle development cycle takes about four years,” Marchwicki said. “To have included a specific Internet radio for 2010, we would have had to partner with whatever Internet radio manufacturer appeared dominant in 2006. Well, most of the companies who were big then are not now, while Pandora only came into its own in the last year.” You can read Radio World’s full article here.

KOGAN TABLETOP RADIO LOOKS TO BE AN ALL-IN-ONE MUSIC SOLUTION

Today we look to Australia for a fun new Internet radio device, a tabletop Wi-Fi radio by Kogan. Besides streaming Internet radio, the device tunes in to digital radio and features an iPod dock. Other devices can be hooked up through an AUX port too. PC World writes (here) that for $200, the Kogan Wi-Fi Radio is simply “a good deal.”



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