Admin Note: Podcast Host Moved

A History of Rock Music in 500 Songs
A History of Rock Music in 500 Songs
Admin Note: Podcast Host Moved

A quick admin note about why the podcast has changed hosts. Click through for the transcript.


This is a brief admin podcast to explain why a new episode of the podcast won’t be up for a few days, why the podcast wasn’t available for a couple of days, and also why some of you might have seen all the old episodes turn up again in your podcast app. On Monday, i woke up to find that the Recording Industry Association of America had made a DMCA complaint against episode 112, the episode on “She Loves You”, claiming that it violated copyright law. Now, of course, the podcast does not violate copyright law — everything I do is within fair use rules for the US and fair dealing rules for the EU and UK — but the DMCA is a stupid law that says that as soon as a complaint is received the host company has to take down a file until a counterclaim is made.

I’d expected this kind of thing to happen sooner or later — while I stay clearly within the bounds of copyright law, the RIAA is known for sending bogus takedown notices, and I have always been willing to reedit episodes as soon as a complaint was made, just to avoid hassle. It’s something I factored into my plans, as a tiny podcaster doing a music history podcast.

So it would have been fair if podbean had taken down that single episode — and I did an edited version removing all the music clips, so it could be restored. But instead of taking down that one episode, they took down the entire podcast, and refused to put it back online even though I’d reedited the one episode complained about. They also refused to answer my emails, kept replying to my tweets on the subject and deleting the replies when other people pointed out the absurdity of what they were saying, and eventually became actively abusive.

It took two days of social media pressure for them to reverse their decision and put the podcast back, but obviously I can’t keep using them. So I have migrated the podcast to . The feed has already migrated here, and over the next few days I’ll be sorting out the website and getting the domain redirected. WordPress, unlike most hosting companies, takes freedom of speech seriously, and rejects invalid DMCA claims — and when it does receive a valid one it only takes down the infringing file, not the entire site. 

Dealing with Podbean’s incompetence and buffoonery has taken two full days — the days I had planned to spend recording and editing the next podcast episode — and I am going to have to spend more time getting the new website into shape, because images and formatting from old posts have been lost in the import. I also have a family commitment this weekend, so I won’t be able to get the new episode recorded until Sunday night — hopefully it will be up on Monday or Tuesday, and then I’ll be back to a regular posting schedule, all else being well.

Anyway, everything is pretty much sorted now, but I would advise that anyone who worries that their podcast might receive a bogus or malicious DMCA complaint use literally any podcast host in the world except Podbean, unless you really enjoy having your blood pressure raised to dangerously high levels. For the next couple of days things might look a little shoddy on the website and so on, until things are totally sorted, so bear with me.  Thanks for listening.

11 thoughts on “Admin Note: Podcast Host Moved

  1. dear andrew
    thank you so much for your information about this hassle with riaa; i’m so grateful for your poscast – one of the most researched i’ve ever – i mean ever – listened to; being a rock nerd myself; so keep on truckin’ – with thanks and love – chris

  2. David Shepard

    Well said, as always. Your point-of-view and “voice” are always spot-on, honest, well-reasoned and well researched . . . all are attributes of a fine historian. Keep on Truckin’

  3. James

    I have over 17,000 CDs which in this age of streaming seems rather superfluous. Just a point of reference to show how much a music freak I am.
    Your podcast is one of the most enjoyable discoveries I have found in more than a decade. Each episode is a treasure. Fight the power and please keep on trucking. You have given me a reason to live for about 370 more weeks.

  4. Nick

    Love your podcast Andrew and I wait for each new episode with great anticipation. Today None of your episodes came up when I searched. Hope the fix is coming soon!

    1. Andrew Hickey

      In this case I actually don’t need to. My main reason for choosing over other hosts is that they auto-reject two thirds of the DMCA notices they receive, either because they’re fair use or because the complaints are badly drawn up and not actually legal. By letting wordpress deal with it, I’m actually fairly likely to never have to deal with a DMCA complaint myself at all…

  5. Steve

    I’m late picking up this thread but I would like to add that abuse of copyright law is now a common way for record companies to bully creators and parasitise their earnings. It’s a big problem on YouTube, where they systematically file bogus claims knowing that creators risk losing their channel if they fight back. Andrew’s podcast is revealing how musicians have always been exploited by managers and record companies and this is more of the same thing.

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