Definition of payola
: undercover or indirect payment (as to a disc jockey) for a commercial favor (as for promoting a particular recording)
Examples of payola in a Sentence
These radio disc jockeys accepted payola to play particular songs.
payola in the music industry
Origin and Etymology of payola
1pay + -ola (as in Pianola, trademark for a player piano)
First Known Use: 1938
PAYOLA Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of payola for English Language Learners
: money that is paid to someone for illegally helping to sell or advertise a product
: the illegal practice of giving or receiving payola
Legal Definition of payola
: a secret or indirect payment (as to a disc jockey) for a commercial favor (as for promoting a particular record)
Seen and Heard
What made you want to look up payola? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).