Record Companies Reportedly Hiring Students To Snitch On Their Peers

It seems recording companies would rather not do the dirty work of seeking out students pirating music, instead hiring other students to snitch on their peers over in Europe. The four big labels — EMI, Sony, Universal and Warner –Â are reportedly working on anti-piracy strategies with companies who will go to great lengths to take down students.

TorrentFreak cites insiders who say these organizations think of students as pirate hunters, and have been turning them against their fellow Internet users.

One such group is BVMI in Germany, which is affiliated with the International Federation of the Phonograhpic Industry and has the big four as members. BVMI has a contract with a group called proMedia, hiring it to hunt down copyright infringements on its behalf.

According to TorrentFreak:

The operations of these anti-piracy companies are usually shrouded in secrecy, but on condition of anonymity an insider has been speaking out about his work hunting pirates at proMedia. The individual, referred to only as ‘Peter’, told SpiegelOnline that he has worked for the company for four years, tracking down copyright infringements on behalf of the big labels.

Peter, a musician and student teacher, works in proMedia’s Hamburg office, but he is not alone. According to the 26-year-old, proMedia employs a total of 35 students in a range of anti-piracy roles.

Peter and his pals use Google to search forums and blogs for any potential infringements, and track down file-sharers on peer-to-peer networks to get them to give up cash settlements.

We can’t see this going over well here if the U.S. and the Recording Industry Association of America follow suit.

Big Four Music Labels Hire Students To Chase File-Sharers [TorrentFreak]