19th May
It was on this day...
1960 Payola Scandal Arrests

On this day Alan Freed, a disc jockey, who coined the phrase rock 'n' roll, is arrested, along with 7 others, on suspicion of commercial bribery (specifically: accepting payments for playing records on the radio, or payola).

The payola scandal had hit the headlines in 1959 and led to an inquiry by The Federal Communications Commission and Federal Trade Commission.

Early in 1960, The National Association of Broadcasters had said that any DJ found having been paid to play a record would be fined $500 plus a year in prison.

The practice of paying for each record play led to some DJ's earning a reputed extra $35,000 a year, but some record companies complained that the practice stopped other records being played without a payment which was unfair.

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