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  • SM, YG, JYP and other big names accused of rigging online music hits
  • [2013-08-09]

  • SM.YG.JYP and Star Empire are among the power players among entertainment and music companies that are under fire for alleged involvement in online music hit rigging.

    On August 7th the Seoul Central District Prosecutors' Office has issued summons for the relevant companies for controlling hits on their music products online with the intention of promoting their music and artists.

    The companies are believed to have hired specialized brokers to help increase hits on certain songs to help them climb up online music charts.

    Through this process songs are easily and quickly disguised as a hit song and stand to have and edge in other music chart shows on TV and radio as well.

    One online music site representative said "Normally, it takes around 4 minutes to download and listen to an entire song, so in 24 hours, one can repeatedly download it 360 times. But we recently discovered that certain songs have been streamed a thousand and even 10 thousand times in a single day.

    And that's not all, thanks to the new copyright laws passed in May, the number of hits equate to profits made for the relevant parties, adding to reasons for the music giants to be involved in such riggings.

    Representatives of the 4 major companies did say "We have reasons to believe there are marketing companies that suggest such acts and generate tremendous profits."

    The signs of hit rigging methods are as follows:

    - Using similar IDs or IP addresses to repeatedly stream a specific song.

    - As the songs a regarded as streamed only after being played for more than a minute, the songs are played for 1 minute or slightly longer.

    - Using a special program that automatically streams the song again after a minute of streaming.

    - Logging on to hundreds of diffrent sites with a single ID, streaming the same song with a second's interval for each site.

    One representative of a major music and management company said "We must put a stop to such acts that hurt companies that produce and promote music honestly. Everyone in the industry should work together to promote fair competition and positive developments in the music world. We must work together to come up with legal means to halt online music hit rigging."

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