For years people living in Canada have had to subscribe to satellite radio to gain access to the same streamed music that listeners in the United States and Europe have had via subscription services such as Pandora and Spotify. That’s mainly because of often tricky copyright laws in that country. Now, to get around such problems the Canadian Broadcasting Company has announced on CBC News that it will start streaming music that will be free to all residents of Canada.
Representatives for the new streaming service spoke with CBC news and said that their goal is to provide the same level of access to streamed music as listeners in virtually all other highly industrialized countries, and perhaps to go even further by also offering home grown talent that have had trouble gaining a foothold in the US or other countries.
The new service will be called CBC Music and will offer users access to a standard library catalog as well as access to over 40 local radio affiliates and small web stations. Users can also connect with a CBC blog to interact with radio staff and each other. CBC Music will also be made available for smartphones, via an app that will be downloadable from the main site.
Chris Boyce, executive director for the new service told CBC news that the new service will allow Canadians to connect with the rest of the music world in ways that haven’t been available online before, and that it should also allow for connecting with like minded people in virtually all genres. He says the move was precipitated by complaints by Canadians after learning that both Pandora and Spotify were passing on an offer made by the CBC to create a partnership to bring those products to Canadian listeners. He said he felt the anger and frustration of music lovers in Canada at the apparent lack of concern in trying to penetrate the Canadian market, which in that country has been seen as a “thumbing the nose” at a market not deemed worthy of investing in.
To address any copyright issues, the CBC has formed a partnership with Canada’s Audio-Video Licensing Agency, which was of course the governmental group that stood in the way of foreign companies. The partnership should allow the CBC to broadcast virtually anything offered by other bigger and more well-known companies.
CBC Music will be funded in part by government funds, and partly through advertising, which should mean far less breaks than are heard on standard over-the-air radio stations.