DJ Tiiny: No action over radio presenter who charged £200 to play songs

By Mark Savage
BBC music reporter

image copyrightGetty Images
image captionDJ Tiiny had hosted a weekly show on Capital Xtra since 2018

Radio station Capital Xtra will not face any penalties after one of its DJs was found to be asking for payments of £200 to play songs on his show.

DJ Tiiny, who tours with Stormzy, broke the UK broadcasting code by asking for money in return for exposure on his weekly Friday night show.

He was dropped by the radio station as soon as the situation came to light.

It triggered an investigation by media regulator Ofcom, which now says it "considers the matter resolved".

The story became public in January, when the record producer J Beatz Music posted a screenshot of an email, purportedly written by DJ Tiiny.

"If you wish for [your] track to be premiered on my Friday night radio show, there would be a charge of £200 for one track," the email said.

"This would also include keeping the track within my radio playlist for 2 weeks."

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites.View original tweet on Twitter

Global Radio, the parent company of Capital and Capital Xtra, confirmed it had been made aware of the allegations on 27 January 2021, and that the presenter's contract had been terminated the following day.

Global told Ofcom that the matter had then been investigated by its legal team, which established that no-one else at the station had been "involved in, or aware of, the presenter's activity".

It added that "seeking payments to influence music selection is culturally understood by those working at Global to be completely unacceptable, and this incident [had] shocked its staff".

The broadcaster noted that DJ Tiiny's contract had specifically forbidden so-called pay-for-play deals; and that he had received training from Capital Xtra that would have "reinforced his obligations" to adhere to the broadcasting code.

Ofcom ruled that, in light of the station's swift and decisive action, it would take no further action.

"In this instance, the presenter had gained financially from soliciting payment for playing specific music tracks on Capital Xtra," the regulator said in its decision.

"However, Ofcom recognises that broadcasters can only minimise the risk of an employee or agent forming with a third party a commercial arrangement that may influence the selection or rotation of music for broadcast".

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites.View original tweet on Twitter

DJ Tiiny apologised for his actions in February.

"I was given an incredible opportunity within radio and carelessly and irresponsibly took advantage of my position," wrote the DJ, whose real name is Frank Boakye-Yiadom.

"I take full responsibility for my actions and fully accept the consequences."

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