Free Culture for Radio
Corporate radio control threatens independent artists...
Good music doesn't always translate into airtime. An old practice now resurfacing among radio stations is payola, or 'pay for play', which keeps songs from major labels playing and silences independent artists. Although it is illegal for the recording industry to directly pay radio stations, the major labels have found a loophole in which they pay third parties to get their music played. Just how big is this?
- A now-defunct division of Sony Music gave $400,000 to third parties, following a year in which the song "Criminal" by Fiona Apple got nationwide airplay
- 65 stations across the country are owned by Radio One, who openly admit they take millions each year to play certain songs
- The industry models requires consistent stream of music and the result is music that all sounds the same
The record companies are making money now, so why are they going to risk paying millions to try something different that might lose them money? They won't, and this is keeping good music off the air. Free Culture promotes the Creative Commons license, which allows artists more control over their music, and allows for better distribution while still giving the artists credit (and allowing for fair compensation). In these ways we can:
- Stop Recording Industry lawsuits against children
- Stop the homogenization of music
- Promote small and independent labels
This is all part of the Free Culture Movement. To find out more: