ENTERTAINMENT
28/03/2018 11:50 BST

Radio 1 Told By Ofcom They Must Play 50% 'New Music' During The Day

Their definition of what constitutes 'new music' has also become more strict.

Ofcom has ruled that BBC radio stations need to play more “new music” during its daytime shows.

The media watchdog has said that Radio 1 needs at least 50% of its daytime musical offerings to come from “emerging UK artists” in a bid to distinguish itself from its competitors.

It also specifically outlined its definition of “new music”, saying they hold the title of “for a period of either... 12 months from first release or… six weeks from the date it first enters the Top 20 - whichever is sooner”.

Darren Gerrish via Getty Images
Radio 1 presenter Nick Grimshaw

While Radio 1’s figures of new music during the day has been raised from 45% to 50%, Radio 2 must now feature at least 20% new songs.

However, listeners probably won’t notice the difference, as both stations currently exceed their targets for new music, with the BBC describing Radio 1 and Radio 2’s current “new music” stats as 54% and 28% respectively.

A BBC spokesperson said: “The BBC has always been a huge champion of new music and we are doing more to support new artists.

“We will meet the new Ofcom conditions and look forward to continuing to deliver the best and freshest content for our audiences.”

Dan Kitwood via Getty Images
Chris Evans fronts Radio 2's breakfast show

These new measures come after a petition to Ofcom from Global - whose stations include Magic, Heart, Capital and Classic FM - suggesting songs should be considered “new” for four weeks after their first play.

This suggestion was ultimately rejected, with the regulator instead saying a song is considered “new” for six.

Nick Grimshaw currently hosts Radio 1’s breakfast show, which it was revealed last month had pulled in its highest number of listeners in two years.