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                       OF NEW PAYOLA BILL

Los Angeles, CA, November 18, 2005   –  The American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (AFTRA) applauds Senator Feingold's efforts to create legislation that will shine a light on the insidious practice of payola, which has continued to suppress employment opportunities and income for AFTRA recording artists.

By providing full disclosure of industry transactions between record labels, promoters, concert venues, and radio stations, this legislation levels the playing field for all AFTRA recording artists and performers by striking a balance between the need for exposure against the need for income and success. “For too long, especially since the passage of the 1996 Telecommunications Act, AFTRA recording artists have been economically leveraged by media conglomerates who control the very life of an artist through airplay, concert venues, and promotion,” noted AFTRA Assistant National Executive Director of Sound Recordings, Randall Himes. “With this new legislation, AFTRA recording artists have an opportunity to have a voice and a greater opportunity for airplay that will no longer be determined by the financial strength of a promoter or media conglomerate.”

AFTRA extends its deepest thanks to Senator Feingold and urges his colleagues in Congress, on both sides of the aisle, to join him in passing this important legislation that is so vital to artists in America. 

The American Federation of Television and Radio Artists – affiliated with the AFL-CIO – is a diverse national union representing over 70,000 professional performers, broadcasters, and recording artists in 32 Locals throughout the country. AFTRA members work as actors, broadcast journalists, dancers, singers, announcers, hosts, comedians, and disc jockeys in all aspects of the media industries including television and radio, sound recordings, commercials, non-broadcast/industrials, interactive games, and the Internet. For more information, visit AFTRA online at

Christopher de Haan
(323) 634-8203