Pay to Play

Pay to Play

Pay to Play can refer to several different concepts.

In politics

In politics, pay to play refers to a system, akin to payola in the music industry, by which one pays (or must pay) money in order to become a player. The common denominator of all forms of pay to play is that one must pay to "get in the game," with the sports analogy frequently arising [ [ Terry Golway, "Nothing Innocent About Pay-to-Play", The New York Observer, Aug. 26, 2001] ] .

Typically, the payor (an individual, business, or organization) makes campaign contributions to public officials, party officials, or parties themselves, and receives political or pecuniary benefit such as no-bid government contracts, influence over legislation [ [ J. Nesmith, "Execs Pay to Play with GOP", NewsCenter, Jan. 7, 2004] , retrieved Dec. 12, 2007] [ [ "Chicago's Pay-to-Play Zoning" (linking to series of articles from Chicago Tribune)] , retrieved Jan. 30, 2008] , political appointments or nominations [ [ L. Riscalla, "Pilot shows way to end pay to play," Home News Tribune, Nov. 1, 2005, reprinted by Common Cause at] , retrieved Jan. 31, 2008] [ [ "Pay-to-Play, Fletcher-Style",, February 27, 2007] , retrieved Jan. 31, 2008] , special access [ [ "Governor Giving Carte Blanche, Special Access to Major Donors: Pay-to-Play Abuses Aimed at Derailing Public Employee Unions", Jun. 6, 2005] ] or other favors. The contributions, less frequently, may be to nonprofit or institutional entities [ [ H. Hausemann, "Politicos should return money from casino owner who admits trying to buy their support",, July 18, 2006] (contributions to university and schools)] . The phrase, almost always used in criticism, also refers to the increasing cost of elections and the "price of admission" to even run [ [ Mori Dinauer, "Pay to Play", The American Prospect, Jan. 23, 2008] , retrieved Jan. 31, 2008] and the concern "that one candidate can far outspend his opponents, essentially buying the election." [ [ M. Schmitt, New America Foundation, "Pay to Play: Why a Billion-Dollar Election Isn't a Bad Thing", The New Republic Online, Mar. 16, 2007] ]

While the direct exchange of campaign contributions for contracts is the most visible form of Pay to Play, the greater concern is the central role of money in politics, and its skewing both the composition and the policies of government. [ [ C. Canary and E. Wojcicki, "Dollarocracy: Pay-to-play culture still has a chokehold on Illinois politics", Illinois Issues, May 2007] ] [ [ "Clean Money, Clean Elections"] ] Thus, those who can pay the price of admission, such as to a $1000/plate dinner or $25,000 "breakout session," gain access to power and/or its spoils, to the exclusion of those who cannot or will not pay: "giving certain people advantages that other [s] don't have because they donated to your campaign." [Jonathan Fine, president of Preservation Chicago, quoted in [,1,4395775.story?page=2 D. Mihalopoulos, R. Becker, & D. Little, "Neighborhoods for Sale: How cash, clout transform Chicago neighborhoods", Chicago Tribune, January 27, 2008] , retrieved Jan. 31, 2008] Good-government advocates consider this an outrage because "political fundraising should have no relationship to policy recommendations." [ [ J. Rood, "On Heels of 9/11, Clinton Fundraiser Raises Eyebrows", ABC News: The Blotter] (quoting Danielle Brian, executive director of the Project on Government Oversight)]

Incumbent candidates and their political organizations are typically the greatest beneficiaries of Pay-to-Play. Both the Democratic and Republican parties have been criticized for the practice. Many seeking to ban or restrict the practice characterize pay-to-play as legalized corruption.

The opposite of a pay-to-play system is one that is "fair and open"; the New Jersey Pay to Play Act specifically sets out bid processes that are or are not considered fair and open, depending upon who has contributed what to whom. [ [ N.J.S.A. 19:44A-20.4] ]

Because of individual federal campaign contribution limits in the wake of the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act (McCain-Feingold), pay-to-play payments of "soft money" (money not contributed directly to candidate campaigns and which do not "expressly advocate" the election or defeat of a candidate) donations to state parties and county committees have come under greater scrutiny. This method refers to money which is donated to an intermediary with a higher contribution limit, which in turn donates money to individual candidates or campaign committees who could not directly accept the payor's funds.

Pay-to-Play practices have come under scrutiny by both the federal government [ [ Public Citizen "Pay-to-Play and the Federal Government," 02-03-2004] , retrieved on 02-09-2008] and a number of states [ [ Public Citizen, "Pay-to-Play and State Governments," 02-03-2004] , retrieved on 02-09-2008] . In Illinois, federal prosecutors have taken the lead in investigating "pay-to-play allegations that surround Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich's administration." [ [,1,2852476.story Chicago Tribune, Nov. 1, 2006] , retrieved Jan. 31, 2008] Many agencies have been created to regulate and control campaign contributions. Furthermore, many third-party government "watchdog" groups have formed to monitor campaign donations and make them more transparent.

In music

The term also refers to a growing trend, where venue owners charge an up-front fee to performing artists for the use of their facilities. The practice began in Los Angeles, CA, during the 1980s. It has become common in many U.S cities at low-turnout all-ages shows where performers are required to guarantee a minimum attendance through pre-show ticket sales. [ reference, article]

The term "Pay to Play" is also used as the title to a song by the band Nirvana and as the title to a song by the Cringer, in which they denounce the practice.

In the visual arts

Similar to the trend cited above in music, Pay to Play is the practice of visual artists paying gallery owners, dealers, curators, publishers, festival and contest sponsors, and better-established artists to critique, review, judge, exhibit, collect, or publish works created in such disparate media as painting, photography, video, and sculpture. Pay to Play is a mild form of vanity publishing. Pay to Play is characterized by cash flow that moves away from visual artists. Pay to Play is sold to visual artists and justified by visual artists as "an investment in future sales" [ [ Harlan Ellison -- Pay the Writer] , retrieved on Apr. 10, 2008] and may be self-victimization. [ [ Artist & Art Competitions, Contests, Opportunities, Gallery Show Scams, Pay to Play] , retrieved on Apr. 10, 2008]

In online gaming

The term is also used as slang to refer to many services online that require that users pay in order to use them. Usually, it refers to MMORPG games, where players must pay to maintain a playing account, as is the case with World of Warcraft, Final Fantasy XI, Ragnarok Online, or Mu Online.The game RuneScape features both free accounts for no money or pay-to-play accounts, with a much larger list of features.

The term may also refer to something like the online game Habbo Hotel, where there are games inside the game, which you may "pay to play" to join into a game whilst it is in progress.

In corporate finance

Pay to Play is a provision in a corporation's charter documents (usually inserted as part of a preferred stock financing) that requires stockholders to participate in subsequent stock offerings in order to benefit from certain antidilution protections. If the stockholder does not purchase his or her pro rata share in the subsequent offering, then the stockholder loses the benefit(s) of the antidilution provisions. In extreme cases, investors who do not participate in subsequent rounds must convert to common stock, thereby losing the protective provisions of the preferred stock. This approach minimizes the fears of major investors that small or minority investors will benefit by having the major investors continue providing needed equity, particularly in troubled economic circumstances for the company. It is considered a "harsh" provision that is usually only inserted when one party has a strong bargaining position.


No Pay No Play is a concept in auto insurance law where an uninsured driver is not permitted to recover money for property damage or bodily injury damages caused by an auto accident even if the uninsured driver is not at fault.


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См. также в других словарях:

  • Pay-to-play — Pour les articles homonymes, voir P2P (homonymie). Le terme pay to play est employé avec des sens différents selon le domaine. Performance et industrie musicale Article détaillé : payola. Dans le domaine de la musique, le pay to play est la… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Pay To Play — Pour les articles homonymes, voir P2P (homonymie). Le terme pay to play est employé avec des sens différents selon le domaine. Performance et industrie musicale Article détaillé : payola. Dans le domaine de la musique, le pay to play est la… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Pay to play — Saltar a navegación, búsqueda No debe confundirse con P2P. El término Pay to play (conocido también como Pay 2 Play) o pagar por jugar en español es un método de servicios online, específicamente a los juegos, que requiere que los usuarios paguen …   Wikipedia Español

  • Pay per play — (PPP), also known as Cash per play (CPP), is an online advertising method that plays an audio advertisement on websites. The term pay per play comes from advertisers paying for each audio ad played. Also, the web page playing the audio ad is… …   Wikipedia

  • Pay to play — Not to be confused with Play or pay contract. Pay to play, sometimes pay for play, is a phrase used for a variety of situations in which money is exchanged for services or the privilege to engage (play) in certain activities. The common… …   Wikipedia

  • Pay to play — Pour les articles homonymes, voir P2P (homonymie). Le terme pay to play est employé avec des sens différents selon le domaine. Performance et industrie musicale Article détaillé : payola. Dans le domaine de la musique, le pay to play est la… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Pay to play — Die Bezeichnung Payola setzt sich zusammen aus den Worten pay (engl.: bezahlen) und Victrola und steht für den Vorgang des “pay for play” (engl.: „bezahlen für das Spielen“). Dieser Vorgang beschreibt die Bestechung von Disc Jockeys und Programm… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • pay-per-play — /ˌpeɪ pe pleɪ/ noun a website where the user has to pay to play an interactive game over the Internet …   Marketing dictionary in english

  • pay-to-play — adjective Requiring payment from the player …   Wiktionary

  • pay-to-play — Attempts by municipal bond underwriting businesses to gain influence with political officials who decide which underwriters are awarded the municipality s business. Bloomberg Financial Dictionary …   Financial and business terms

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