Wednesday, August 22, 2007

General Motors giving payola to Limbaugh?

Nader's letter to the Federal Communications Commission cited a report in the August 6 edition of Automotive News that said GM was buying ads, loaning cars and offering other incentives to national and local radio hosts in exchange for the promotions.

FCC rules require broadcasters to say if content has been aired in exchange for money or other considerations.

GM has provided free use of vehicles and bought advertising time hoping for on-air endorsements from program hosts, according to a GM spokesman.

"We think this is a good way to build relationships with some of the talent and to get the word out about our great vehicles," the spokesman said.

Consumer Affairs

UPDATE: Other radio personalities implicated...

Automotive News, a Detroit-based trade publication, also said GM was soliciting endorsements from Bill O'Reilly, Laura Schlessinger, Whoopi Goldberg, Sean Hannity, Ed Schultz, Bill Press and Ryan Seacrest...The FCC has cracked down on payola in the U.S. radio industry in recent years. The agency announced in April that four of the largest U.S. radio companies agreed to pay $12.5 million to settle claims their stations took money and gifts to play certain songs.

Allentown Morning Call


Janice in Denver said...

Why would the US car industry, who are under so much scrutiny these days for shoddy products and lame fuel efficiency, want to hook their future to the likes of Rush Limbaugh.

I guess they are playing to the base.

From now on whenever I think GM I will see that lard-ass Limbaugh. Not a good association. They need a better PR team.

Anonymous said...

I think this is a little bit of a stretch. They are doing this just for Rush, but for other 'talent' as well. For all we know, they could have snared a couple of Air America hosts as well.