Pirates

Ever Pirate Music? The FBI Probably Won't Hire You.

|

Wait! Before you illegally download that copy of Justin Bieber's latest hits, you've got to know something: It could cost you a gig with the FBI.

TorrentFreak, a blog dedicated to all things copyright- and piracy-related, reported last week:

Monday this week Sacramento State's Career Center welcomed the FBI for a visit concerning recruitment of students for its paid internship program. One of the topics discussed were historical actions that could exclude applicants from the program.

In addition to drug use, criminal activity and even defaulting on a student loan, students were informed that if they had illegally downloaded content in the past, that could rule them out of a position at the FBI. It appears that to the agency, downloading is tantamount to stealing.

The student-run State Hornet spoke with an FBI representative, Steve Dupre, who says there's no point in lying about it:

During the first two phases of interviews, everything is recorded and then turned into a report. This report is then passed along to a polygraph technician to be used during the applicant's exam, which consists of a 55-page questionnaire. If an applicant is caught lying, they can no longer apply for an FBI agent position.

"If you are accepted to intern at FBI and fail the polygraph you can no longer apply to FBI again." Dupre said.

This policy isn't terribly surprising, since the FBI has gone after high-profile file-sharing sites like MegaUpload. Though, that doesn't mean it's a policy that makes much sense.

While the agency considers piracy "a growing threat," several studies have shown that musicians and entertainers actually benefit from the illicit distribution of their art. A 2012 survey found that 46 percent of all Americans illegally download copyrighted material, and among people aged 18-29, it's  70 percent. By barring young people who participate in an increasingly common activity, the FBI is limiting its own pool of technologically curious and savvy potential employees—just as it's doing by not hiring marijuana users. Whether the policy even works is up for debate, since it's been documented just how much members of the FBI (and Congress and the Department of Justice) like to snatch free copies of their favorite shows and movies, too. 

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

21 responses to “Ever Pirate Music? The FBI Probably Won't Hire You.

  1. “If you are accepted to intern at FBI and fail the polygraph you can no longer apply to FBI again.” Dupre said.

    What if the Court Phrenologist says you’re telling the truth?

  2. So basically the FBI can’t hire anybody.

    1. I’m sure there’s a few people out there who blindly obey everything from authority without questioning or thinking.

      1. cough tulpa cough cough…

  3. What about people who used to own dual cassette decks with high speed dubbing? Are they on the list too?

    1. They’re too old to apply.

  4. As I understand it, you can’t lie about pirating music. You can admit to it and still be qualified.

  5. So they basically pre-disqualify the best and brightest. That explains a lot about how our government operates.

    1. *So they basically pre-disqualify the best and brightest.*

      Only the ‘best’ and/or ‘brightest’ download movies & music from pirate sites?

      Interesting.

      1. In addition to drug use, criminal activity and even defaulting on a student loan, students were informed that if they had illegally downloaded content in the past, that could rule them out of a position at the FBI.

        The best and brightest tend to do at least one thing that authority tells them not to do, because they tend to have at least some degree of curiosity. Note that this doesn’t apply to unquestioning little bootlickers like you, tulpa.

  6. *This policy isn’t terribly surprising, since the FBI has gone after high-profile file-sharing sites like MegaUpload. *

    Megaupload/Kim Dotcom didn’t “download” anything. Their entire business model was all about making money by illegally hosting copyrighted materials in exchange for monthly access fees to their hosted material. That’s not ‘tantamount’ to stealing and it isn’t “two guys sharing files between themselves”, it’s straight up piracy. No different than charging dudes 10 bucks to get into a flea market that sells nothing but pirated DVDs.

    1. Our latest troll thinks file storage = illegally hosting copyrighted materials.

      We draw them like flies to shit.

      1. Our latest troll is tulpa.

  7. You know who we need working at the FBI, NSA, and CIA in huge numbers? Mormons.

    They go overseas, they learn another language fluently, they come back, and they’re patriotic. Most importantly: they don’t smoke, drink, or chew or hang with those that do.

    1. You know who we need working at the FBI, NSA, and CIA in huge numbers? Nobody.

  8. By barring young people who participate in an increasingly common activity, the FBI is limiting its own pool of technologically curious and savvy potential employees

    Of course. They’re just narrowing the field of people that they’ll hire to include more mindless rule-following drones and total authoritarians, which will just make the personnel makeup of the FBI worse (which it has been doing for a long time). This is exactly what they want, and is just another perfect example of how these agencies and bureaucracies self-select for the worst people for the job.

  9. So now the FBI only hires sociopaths who can lie their way through a polygraph? Makes sense to me.

    1. And honest bootlicking retards like tulpa. The kind of people who got straight D’s in high school but took great pride in being awarded for perfect attendance.

    2. So in other words, nothing has changed since the FBI’s inception.

  10. I’m thinking they would have barred me anyway due to my extensive history of losing my temper and calling for open revolution on the internets.

  11. Wait, you ended the post without telling us what they say about pirating porn!

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.