Pandora launched its annual holiday genre stations, including two new stations, Navidad Mexicana and Navidad Tropical, while a bill the company has lobbied for to lower Internet royalty fees for artists was discussed on Capitol Hill.
While House Judiciary Committee debated the Internet Radio Fairness Act, which would allow Internet radio stations to pay the lower rates AM/FM stations enjoy, Pandora launched Christmas Radio, Hanukkah Radio, Country Christmas, Indie Holidays and other stations to give users of many different musical preferences the soundtrack for their seasonal activities.
The company said 2.5 million users tuned in to holiday-themed channels during the Thanksgiving weekend. Pandora had nearly 60 million active listeners at the end of October.
In addition to fighting in Congress to ease its royalty fees, Pandora has also sued one music library.
Is Pandora a Scrooge? The company says no.
“We’re proud to pay performance fees. We think artists could and should ultimately earn even more. But all of this revenue is coming from a single company. A predatory licensing fee orchestrated over ten years ago by the RIAA (Recording Industry Association of America) and their lobbyists in Washington has devastated internet radio.” co-founder Tim Westergren wrote in a blog post in October.