The Pandora Battle Continues

pandora_logoThe online struggle between internet music provider Pandora and several industry organizations—including the NMPA, ASCAP and others—continues. We’ve compiled the latest posts and responses between Pandora, the NMPA, Pink Floyd and songwriter David Lowery.

Pink Floyd wrote a scathing op-ed piece in USA Today, stating, “The open letter to Pandora that we signed last year said, ‘Lets work this out as partners’ and that’s what we should do. But tricking artists into signing a confusing petition without explaining what they are really being asked to support only poisons the well.”

• Songwriter David Lowery, best known as the lead singer for 1990s band Cracker, says that Pandora played his song more than 1 million times and gave the songwriter only $16.89 in royalties.

Pandora responded to the Pink Floyd op-ed with a statement to Radio Ink, saying, “We have enormous respect for the members of Pink Floyd, and their amazing artistic contributions. We also respect the genuineness of their opinion. Unfortunately, they have been given badly misleading information – the result of a well-orchestrated campaign by the RIAA and their lobbying arm to mislead and agitate artists.” Pandora CEO Tim Westergren also posted a blog on Pandora’s website yesterday, clarifying Pandora’s stance, saying, “While we have generally tried to steer clear of debating this issue in the media, the volume of misinformation has reached a level where I feel it’s important to set the record straight – not only for Pandora, but also for the artists themselves as they consider what, if any role, to play in shaping the policy around royalties in the coming months and years. There is a window of opportunity here to create a healthy and sustainable music ecosystem, but that won’t happen if the discussion is dominated and controlled by entrenched incumbents.”

David Israelite, CEO of the National Music Publishers Association, released a response statement to Westergren’s blog, saying, “Put simply, Pandora has gone to war against creators of music.”


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Jessica Nicholson serves as the Managing Editor for MusicRow magazine. Her previous music journalism experience includes work with Country Weekly magazine and Contemporary Christian Music (CCM) magazine. She holds a BBA degree in Music Business and Marketing from Belmont University. She welcomes your feedback at

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