AFTRA Praises Payola Settlement

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The American Federation of Television and Radio Artists calls the reported payola settlement between the FCC and four major radio companies a "great victory" for its members.

That's because the agreement includes a side deal with independent artists for airtime set-asides for their music.

The payola allegations involved major record labels compensating radio stations for airplay, but the other side of that coin is that that meant even less potential airtime for smaller labels, who might not have the money, or the inclination, to buy their way into the rotation.

"We have consistently argued that, in addition to monetary fines, meaningful remedies for the insidious
practice of payola must include requirements for the minimum airplay of independent artists," said AFTRA general counsel Tom Carpenter in a statement Tuesday. He added, "independent record labels often lack the resources to secure airtime for their artists in an industry where the practice of 'pay for play' runs rampant."