An alliance of nine French music radio stations have launched an initiative against the quotas for French-language music.
The quotas were introduced in 1994 and means that at least 35% of music output has to be in French with additional rules concerning the exposure of new talent. Earlier in January, media regulator CSA presented a report on the policy, with proposals that would ease regulations of stations that deliver music diversity or that play music genres without much French production. Music business organization SNEP has put forward its own ideas for further rules – including one on the rotation of new music titles. A political decision is expected in the spring.
Nine radio stations have responded to the CSA report and SNEP’s proposal by launching a campaign for a complete review of the quotas. The campaign consists of an ad that is aired on the participating stations, which together account for 85% of music radio listening. There are also mobilising activities on Facebook and Twitter.
In the campaign, the radio stations declare that they want to “finally be free to program the music they choose”. Arguing against further restrictions of this freedom, the stations point to a new environment of competing unregulated digital services (such as Youtube), a drop in French-language production and the emergence of a new, non-francophone French music scene. The stations are asking the CSA and the French government “not to give in to the attempts by SNEP to place their programming under trusteeship, with yet more restriction on the music that is played on radio”.
The radio campaign runs January 23-31 and is supported by RTL Group’s Fun Radio and RTL2, NRJ Group’s NRJ, Chérie FM, Nostalgie and Rire & Chanson, Virgin Radio, RFM and Oui FM.
Listen to the radio spot here:
French Music Radio in Campaign Against Quotas
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