Payola surfaces again

I've just heard that several major record labels including BMG, EMI and UNIVERSAL have been served writs to hand over all sorts of documents concerning promotion and sales of records. The monopolies people have decided to have another good look at the payola systems that run in the music business.
We over in Blighty have been watching the rise and rise of ClearChannel and it's not a pretty sight. Of course, while the courts are looking into whether or not the big record companies keep out all the litle fish by foul means, they wont even be looking at the 'sanctioned' methods by which 90% of record makers are almost totally excluded from the main arena. Don't confuse this with the weak moan from many 'indy' or 'dance' acts, when they discover the crap track they've worked on for months isn't going to light up the galaxy. That's just crap music. But if you think about the bigger picture, the 'main arena' is surprisingly limited both in styles and 'artists'. That's the closed market in action. Ask anyone in the States, they will tell you that ClearChannel own 90+% of radio stations, venues etc and therefore control totally who gets what with regard to promo. Not to mention the closed shop of touring companies or the army of 'paid off' journalists and promoters, everyone existing in a mutual comfort zone of not biting the hand that feeds them.

Does anyone seriously believe that the investigations will make any difference at all? Methinks not.


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