“Stop Stream Hijackers” a really bad idea

Don’t you hate it when someone tries to access your station’s streaming audio without using your own player or without going to your website to do it?

Don’t you hate the idea of some third party providing access to your stream and, theoretically, monetizing what goes around that stream?

From Radio Ink:

Station streaming provider StreamAudio is offering a new software feature that detects when a request for a station stream is coming from an unauthorized source and redirects the listener to the station website to hear a legitimate stream. Stream “hijackers,” StreamAudio said, link to station streams and intercept listeners, then send the stream through their own players — collecting ad impressions and revenue while the originating station pays for royalties and bandwidth. [Said] StreamAudio President/GM Darren Harle. “With this, we both thwart the hijacker and help radio stations keep their listeners, their traffic levels, and their available impression intact.”

Don’t you hate it?

Well, I say, too bad.

Because the audience doesn’t care about what you hate. And you can’t keep anything that doesn’t want to be kept, so long as those ears have options other than yours.

The basic advantage of owning content is that you should spread it around.

If the Internet-enabled world is shaping up in such a way as I will be able to hear whatever I want from wherever I want it, are you sure you want to erect your own particular barrier and force me to access your content YOUR way rather than mine?

Is your content really that unique to the world that I can’t get a fair facsimile from someone else with a more open access policy?

Are we learning nothing from the stupidity of the music labels?

Get this straight: Hijackers are your friends. Should you share in their revenue from your content? Of course you should! And should you incentivize them to spread your content around? you bet. Should you be so stupid as to block their ability to promote and publicize what you have? Absolutely not.

And if they don’t want to play nice, that’s a problem for attorneys, not technology.

Isn’t the very worst case scenario that all that audio advertising presumably plugged into your stream reaches a lot more ears than it otherwise would? Isn’t “reach” a good thing?

Go ahead, erect barriers. Force listeners to do what you want them to do.

And watch your impressions and traffic and listenership and brand value wane.

You’re not the boss. The audience is.

Here are words to remember in these crazy digital times: “It’s not what you have, it’s what you do with it.”

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