Pandora finally closes its doors to all but US visitors – and that now includes the UK

Digital Music

The traditional music business is on a downward slide, fearing new technology rather than embracing the opportunity it gives. As an example, see Pandora – a great opportunity to shift music. But guess what? It’s finally been blocked to all but US users.

Access was severely restricted last year, but the UK was left open as the company behind it worked on an agreement for a license fee for streaming in the UK. Sadly, this hasn’t been possible with both the PPL (which represents the record labels) and the MCPS/PRS Alliance (which represents music publishers) demanding a high fee per track, so a block of all UK IP addresses is now in place.

It’s a complete nonsense. Pandora introduced people to new music, streaming tracks (rather than offering downloads), with links to buy available for each album. Rather than looking at the bigger picture of encouraging sales and bringing in new buyers, the old guard now have no royalties coming in, one less opportunity to sell their music and as a knock-on effect, probably less of an income to share round.

Here’s hoping they eventually see sense and Pandora returns again. The UK switch-off date is 15th January 2008.


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Dave Walker
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  • Quite agree it is idiotic. I am a UK Pandora user (but not for much longer apparently). I picked up on several artists I might not otherwise have heard via Pandora. I also introduced my friends to it.Talk about cutting off your nose to spite your face.

    The UK music publishing and copyright reps can’t think beyond the radio stations streaming owned by LiveNation etc and so they want a cut of the advertising. Of course this one size fits all doesn’t work for Pandora who doesn’t have that sort of advertising but they seem unable to cut a deal with Pandora which reflects its special circumstances, they would rather strike macho poses which are easier dealing with a small industry player like Pandora than a big noise like Live Nation.

    Of course they recently lost the battle with the UK government over extending performing copyright to 70 years in the UK, so I imagine their negotiators wanted to get tough with someone and picked on Pandora. If I was a musician I would be pretty pissed off right now let alone a music fan as I am.

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