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Clear Channel Cuts Ties With Indy Promoters

Clear Channel Cuts Ties With Indy Promoters

Saying it wants to avoid even the suggestion that it tolerates “pay for play,” industry giant Clear Channel Communications has decided to cut station ties with independent record promoters.
Some members of Congress had questioned the practice, including Sens. John McCain, R-Ariz., Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, and Russ Feingold, D-Wis. Each raised questions about whether station contracts with record company “middlemen” affect the amount of airplay given to particular songs.
“We now recognize that these relationships may appear to be something they’re not. We have zero tolerance for ‘pay for play,’ but want to avoid even the suggestion that such a practice takes place within our company,” said Clear Channel President/COO Mark Mays. Cox Radio had made a similar decision earlier.
Feingold has a bill to ban payola-like practices before Congress. At NAB2003, several makers told RW Online that they don’t see the bill getting out of committee.
Clear Channel Radio CEO John Hogan also announced the beginning of a new, restructured relationship with the recording industry. Upon expiration of existing independent promotion contracts this summer, Hogan said, Clear Channel Radio will begin working directly with the recording industry on specific group-wide contesting, promotions and marketing opportunities.

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