Home URBAN Urban Radio PD Blames PPM for “Destroying” Urban Radio?

Urban Radio PD Blames PPM for “Destroying” Urban Radio?


Blames for “Destroying” Urban Radio?

Let us start off by saying we understand how PPM works and how important it is for radio stations and advertising so RFFocus does not agree or disagree with this statement but we found the accusation interesting. Is it fair to say this? In a conversation this morning with a well-known urban radio PD, he suggested that PPM is the reason urban radio is so boring and lacks creativity. He also stated the corporations follow PPMs stringent rules to maintain listeners which hurts new artists and their music being played at most urban radio stations. “I get some INCREDIBLE new music from the labels and I can’t play it!” The PD stated, “On top of PPM, the wrong people are in place telling ME what MY listeners want to hear and I’m TIRED OF THIS SHIT!” he begged. As we nervously held the phone in the hopes this PD was not about to have a titanic stroke, he went on to say…   “PPM lambasts urban radio programmers and announcer creativity. It also bores the listeners.” As we have stated here in RFFocus , technology will give birth to new ratings services which will leave antiquated methods homeless. Stations and corporations are going to have more choices in how to monitor ratings with more sophisticated systems but is this PD right? Your thoughts, comment anonymously if you wish.

CEO of RF Focus, Radio and Music Industry Veteran. Radio DJ, Programmer, Musician and Voice Talent. Graduated from Performing Arts in Buffalo, N.Y. and worked at the legendary KKBT (92.3 The Beat) during its nationwide heyday in the early 90s. Also worked for Stevie Wonder at KJLH.


  1. The statement is true. You’ll find much more creativity on stations that are NOT PPM (markets 55+). Those stations are still operating under the diary system, so the results aren’t as immediate. (With the exception of iHeartmedia (formerly Clear Channel)/Cumulus owned stations…they run the medium and small market stations just like they were PPM.) That gives them room to experiment and really increase public service and involvement.

  2. This is what happens when corporations try to scientifically quantify emotions.Music is an emotional experience for the listener and the creators of music,You can’t create an algorithm that measures a listeners emotional attachment to a song,so you can’t use PPM to accurately measure what people are going to like. You can only measure what they hear when something comes on,but it doesn’t mean they want to listen to it just because the station plays it.

  3. the problem with urban radio is that the culture of today’s radio is not listener friendly it’s balance sheet friendly DRIVEN! there will be no new super futuristic rating system to correct something that isn’t correctable in the first place, as long as we go along with it. the pd was right, and it’s alot of good new music is out there, but there is a reason the future of new music project has reported for the last 3 years that music that is written produced and recorded in this country only 3% of it even sees the light of day on us commercial radio, means 97% goes by the waste side, plus the other problem is the 20 year 2 tier playlist that urban radio employs for to it’s listener’s nothing like fragmenting ur listener, I notice a trend since 2006 at least 2 or more times a year this subject seems to be given some light, seems to me people see this is a issue. still though not confronted like it should be. ppm is a problem when ur target audience like doesn’t have it? hehehe


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