This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here
Stocks Under $10 with 50-100% upside potential - 14 days FREE!

How Internet Radio Should Handle the Music Industry

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- As it battles the royalty fight on several fronts, Pandora (P) struggles with the blessing and curse of disrupting two of the world's most unimaginative industries -- music and radio.

Picture old, fat white guys wearing gold bracelets and over-sized wristwatches puffing cigars. These are the people single-handedly destroying -- or at least slowing down -- trajectories to sanity and progress as the consumption of music moves almost wholly to a digital access model. But it goes beyond consumption -- merely listening to music -- they're working overtime to kibosh a holistic approach to promoting every aspect of the process. From "record" sales to touring to branding and beyond.

There's a fundamental problem that doesn't get talked about much. The leaders of Internet radio companies -- and I'm not just talking about Pandora (P) -- tend to be more tech-minded individuals.

They launch and run startups in the spirit of Apple (AAPL) and Google (GOOG), not dusty old record labels and slow-to-act-and-react bloated corporate giants such as Clear Channel (CCMO). It's a bit like the relationship between Tesla Motors (TSLA) and the entrenched automakers, but only more extreme. Tesla is a technology company; it doesn't "sell cars" the same way Ford (F) and General Motors (GM) do.

Oil and water. However, "little" startups actually operate within companies such as Ford (and, I think, GM), particularly around the issue of in-car entertainment. These guys are not afraid to let Apple or Google or Microsoft (MSFT) or BlackBerry (BBRY) into their worlds literally and conceptually.

The same even applies to old guard media. There's no question the big boys -- Time Warner (TWX), News Corp (NWSA) and such -- control the pace of change, but they're certainly not resistant to it. They just do a better job managing it, carefully and smartly implementing along the inevitable road to entirely new ways of doing things.

That's not the case with the music and radio guys. They have always kicked and screamed towards change, resisting every step of the way. They're, at best, adverse, though more often openly hostile to tech. That should bewilder you, given the fact that technology drives practically all of the success the music industrial complex -- and, ironically, the radio business -- has had over the last decade.

1 of 2

Select the service that is right for you!

COMPARE ALL SERVICES
Action Alerts PLUS
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link actively manage a real portfolio and reveal their money management tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
  • Weekly roundups
TheStreet Quant Ratings
Try it NOW
Only $49.95/yr

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
  • Upgrade/downgrade alerts
Stocks Under $10
Try it NOW

David Peltier, uncovers low dollar stocks with extraordinary upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
  • Weekly roundups
Dividend Stock Advisor
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer's protege, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
  • Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Real Money Pro
Try it NOW

All of Real Money, plus 15 more of Wall Street's sharpest minds delivering actionable trading ideas, a comprehensive look at the market, and fundamental and technical analysis.

Product Features:
  • Real Money + Doug Kass Plus 15 more Wall Street Pros
  • Intraday commentary & news
  • Ultra-actionable trading ideas
Options Profits
Try it NOW

Our options trading pros provide daily market commentary and over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • 100+ monthly options trading ideas
  • Actionable options commentary & news
  • Real-time trading community
  • Options TV
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!
DOW 16,943.81 +28.74 0.17%
S&P 500 1,967.57 +2.89 0.15%
NASDAQ 4,415.49 +19.2860 0.44%

Brokerage Partners

Rates from Bankrate.com

  • Mortgage
  • Credit Cards
  • Auto
Advertising Partners

Free Newsletters from TheStreet

My Subscriptions:

After the Bell

Before the Bell

Booyah! Newsletter

Midday Bell

TheStreet Top 10 Stories

Winners & Losers

Register for Newsletters
Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs