Monday, April 10, 2006

Payola Strikes Back

Techdirt: Radio Stations Claim Payola Probe Limiting New Music: "Some radio stations have gone on an interesting PR offensive against Eliot Spitzer's payola investigations. They're claiming that DJs and music programmers have become reluctant to play new music, out of fear that it might draw unwanted attention to them."
The story originally comes from the Baltimore Sun, which gently took the side of the DJs. As Techdirt points out, there are a lot of holes in their argument. Apart from the fact that Spitzer's suit targeted big label, insta-fame artists (not emerging ones), all of the programmers' paranoia seems rooted in the idea that a slight shred of circumstantial "evidence" will ruin them. From the Sun article:
"I don't want anyone to look at my playlists six months from now and speculate about why I added a particular song, when our competition didn't add it," said one programmer. "People have been fired for less."
Well, I'd like to know what people--and if it's true, it sounds like the fault of reactionary station owners, not Eliot Spitzer.

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