Sony Music: A New Breed Of Piracy

By attacking an artist with no ties to their company, Sony have marked a new low in the age of music piracy.

Sony Music: A New Breed Of Piracy

As we reported earlier this week, Deerhunter / Atlas Sound leader Bradford Cox’s bedroom recordings were taken down by Sony, who sent Cox an e-mail citing “unauthorized reproduction and distribution of copyrighted sound recordings owned or exclusively distributed by Sony Music.”

The thing is, neither of Cox’s music projects are signed to Sony or any of its subsidiaries, nor distributed by Sony Music. So yesterday, the company released a half-hearted apology which read, “The Bradford Cox tracks were mistakenly removed. We advised Mediafire that the titles were mistakenly taken down. We have communicated all of this to Bradford Cox and his manager. We apologize for any inconvenience.”

While the artist and record company seem to have settled their differences (Cox even took down a post from his blog in which he slammed Sony Music), the whole ordeal has shed some light on Sony’s misguided anti-piracy tactics.

In taking down Bradford Cox’s home recordings, which they don’t own any kinds of rights to, Sony Music have acted just like the music pirates they so staunchly accuse. While it’s understandable that a record company would want to protect its own artists’ materials from being downloaded for free, it’s completely ridiculous for Sony to take down a completely unrelated act’s home recordings claiming copyright infringement.

They may try to claim that it was a simple mistake, but it’s rather difficult to believe that not one person in Sony’s anti-piracy crack team would have at least done a quick check to see whether Atlas Sound or Deerhunter were actually signed with the company.

In the continuing fight against music piracy, Sony Music has hit a new low. They haven’t only acted like music pirates themselves, stealing a product that doesn’t belong to them, but the company has also proceeded to censor an artist who wishes to give away a free music product.

I guess Sony really does hate free music.