BitTorrent Inc. is about to launch a completely improved implementation of the BitTorrent protocol that will benefit both users and ISPs. uTorrent 2.0, which is currently being tested by thousands of people, will eliminate the need for ISPs to throttle or stop BitTorrent traffic, and will optimize the download experience for its users.
Most people view BitTorrent sites as massive Internet archives of digital entertainment, ranging from movies through music to software. Nevertheless, the structure of torrent search engines often lacks the navigation that a good archive should have. Files24 aims to fill this void.
Earlier this year, IFPI gave Norwegian ISP Telenor an ultimatum – block access to The Pirate Bay within 14 days or get taken to court. Telenor refused, IFPI made good on its word and the case was held earlier this month. The decision was due today but according to the judge, the decision will now be delayed until next week.
The Stockholm District Court has taken action against two founder members of The Pirate Bay. Gottfrid Svartholm and Fredrik Neij are now banned from operating the site and will have to pay fines of $71,000 each if they continue. This, despite the fact that they nor the site remain in Sweden.
Peter Mandelson confirmed yesterday that illicit file-sharers could have their Internet connections severed as part of the government’s aims to reduce piracy by 70% in 2 years. TalkTalk, the UK’s second largest ISP, is said to be dismayed at the decision and is now threatening legal action over what it claims is a breach of human rights.
The piracy tracking company DtecNet has made quite a name for itself in the past few months after partnering with the RIAA and several local governments to assist in the ‘war on piracy’. One would think that these projects would require at least some basic knowledge of BitTorrent, but a recently published paper by DtecNet’s business intelligence unit proves the opposite.
Following the abortive attempt by Global Gaming Factory to purchase the Pirate Bay, fans and onlookers could be in for a sequence of new dramas as the site pursues new buyers. According to a report today, four entities are in the running, one of which proves particularly interesting.
New laws designed to thwart illicit file-sharing have been drafted by governments all over the world recently. At the same time the entertainment industries have claimed victories against individual file-sharers and operators of BitTorrent sites. Interestingly, these developments haven’t changed social norms towards piracy which makes it hard to maintain compliance.
In a piece today in The Times, Sony boss Michael Lynton yet again champions 3 strikes for alleged pirates and states that combating piracy could add millions to the economy. He also says that due to piracy, in 2008 Hollywood made the lowest number of movies in the last decade. So where did its record earnings go?
The new torrent search engine TaffyBox took the web by storm during the last couple of days, offering a newbie-proof download service. The site was featured by TechCrunch and several other sites, but just a few hours later it is no longer operational. BTjunkie cut it off since it was stealing resources without permission.
The top 10 most downloaded movies on BitTorrent, ‘Paranormal Activity’ tops the chart this week followed by Pixar’s ‘Up’. ‘The Tournament’ completes the top three.
A woman who operates the so-called Underground Restaurant from her London home has had a surprise threat from a movie company. The host of the party, known as Ms Marmite Lover, had arranged a Halloween party with a Harry Potter theme, but Warner Bros. took exception and sent their lawyers to turn her evening into a newt.
With more than half a million visits a day, EZTV is the leading TV-torrent release group. It therefore comes as no surprise that rumors and confusion spread when the site went offline earlier this week. EZTV users can be reassured though, the downtime is caused by technical issues and not any legal trouble as some had suggested.
The Pirate Bay tracker has been in a state of flux for a few weeks now, mostly offline. If your torrent relies on it, what can you do? The easiest solution is to go ‘trackerless’ and use the Distributed Hash Table (DHT), but there are many myths and misunderstandings that can put people off using it.
A unique event takes place today in a movie theater in the north of Norway. Using the Swarmplayer software developed by the EU-funded P2P-Next project, for the first time ever a live concert will be broadcasted on the Internet utilizing BitTorrent technology.
BitTorrent hasn’t always been the Internet’s premier source of TV shows. Before the protocol’s popularity skyrocketed, eD2K was a favored method of acquiring larger files, TV episodes included. TV Underground, a site that has been around for exactly four years, today celebrates its birthday by spreading its wings and introducing torrents.
NowTorrents, the fastest growing torrent site of 2009, lost 90% of its total traffic two weeks ago, being ‘penalized’ by Google. The reason for the Google penalty is unknown but the NowTorrents owner has now taken the opportunity to relaunch a new version of his search engine under a new name – TorrentFly.
In a great blow for consumers everywhere, the prospect of 3-strikes for copyright infringers has returned with a vengeance, as both the EU Council and French Constitutional court pushed forward with their respective legislation. HADOPI is alive, and the EU has shredded requirements for judicial oversight.
Demonoid is one of the largest BitTorrent trackers on the planet and, unfortunately for those interested in the site, also one of the most secretive. With the site currently out of action with little indication when it will return, there are certainly plenty of questions. An interview with Demonoid’s Ukranian host certainly proves to be of great interest.
The Amsterdam court today ruled that The Pirate Bay must remove a list of copyrighted torrents from their website within three months. In addition they have to block Dutch users’ access to parts of the site where copyrighted torrent can be downloaded. If not, the three ‘operators’ will have to pay penalties of 5,000 euros ($7,500) per person, per day.
Millions of people are downloading copyrighted music every day, using file-sharing software such as BitTorrent and LimeWire. Some argue that the music industry has brought on this behavior by refusing to innovate. Others, including the RIAA and some lone researchers beg to differ, and see other reasons for this deviant behavior. So who’s right?
A shop assistant has received an apology from the UK’s Performing Rights Society. The PRS had threatened the 56 year-old grandmother with a “four figure” bill for singing in her shop to customers, but has now backed down from its initial big-sticked aggressive stance, and is now brandishing a big bunch of flowers.
MyBittorrent is familiar name to most in the BitTorrent community, so it came as a surprise when the site shut down this summer. After a dispute concerning the site’s future, the two founders agreed to go their separate ways and close the site. One of them has now returned with a brand new torrent search engine.
BitTorrent sites are continuing to frustrate anti-piracy groups in Spain. They are not illegal under current law, but with a 3 strikes-style regime ruled out in the country, the entertainment industry feels it has no choice but to go after them. They are now placing their bets on thawing US relations and a subsequent change in the law.
Another brand new episode of TorrentFreak TV. This week’s episode covers BREIN’s false evidence against The Pirate Bay, Kazaa’s creators working on new project, MySpace not allowing a copyright owner upload his own song, VODO the new P2P distribution platform and we review a few VPN services.
The top 10 most downloaded movies on BitTorrent, ‘Public Enemies’ tops the chart this week followed by ‘Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince’. ‘The Taking of Pelham’ completes the top three.
This April, four people received harsh sentences for their involvement with The Pirate Bay. The four soon announced that they would appeal the verdict. Initially the appeal was scheduled to take place in November, but due to controversies surrounding some of the judges, the case has now been delayed till summer next year.
The results of a new poll reveal the extent of opposition to Lord Mandelson’s proposals for tough sanctions against alleged file-sharers. The survey, commissioned by the Open Rights Group, shows that not only is the public in favor of due process, but a third would be much less likely to vote for political parties supporting these proposals.
Fresh data on the market share of BitTorrent clients shows that uTorrent remains the client of choice for over 60% of all BitTorrent users. Vuze is in second place, but its market share has dropped to 14%. Transmission, on the other hand, continues to gain ground, with the client’s market share increasing by 23% in the last two months.
The Commissioning Editor for Education at the UK’s Channel 4 will publish an essay tomorrow that is guaranteed to cause controversy. Noting that people will never go back to paying for music, Alice Taylor vehemently opposes plans to disconnect Internet users on a simple accusation, labeling the entities calling for it as “dying behemoths”.
The MPAA is currently involved in legal battles against several BitTorrent sites. Last year Hollywood’s lobby organization booked a victory in court when they managed to shut TorrentSpy down, but despite these efforts the studio bosses are still not satisfied. Three of the MPAA’s anti-piracy leaders have now been fired.
An increasing death-knell is sounding for Lord Mandelson’s proposals for 3-strikes Internet disconnections. The latest blow comes from the All Party Parliamentary Communications Group. After a consultation earlier this year, they have now published their response, and it’s not one favorable to ‘Darth Mandy’ and his plans.
Cineworld, the UK’s second largest multiplex cinema chain, says it provides an environment that makes cinema going a pleasurable experience, “which in turn encourages frequent return visits.” However, they have just alienated an award winning TV and radio broadcaster by refusing him entry because he had his laptop with him.
Two of the main judges appointed to the upcoming Pirate Bay appeal have been accused of a conflict of interest, since they have both been members of pro-copyright groups. The appeal court decided that the judges are not biased, but the defense has announced that it will take the case to the Supreme Court, which is likely to delay the trial.
In recent weeks there has been a lot of debate about the UK government’s upcoming plans to disconnect alleged file-sharers from the Internet. Now, ISP TalkTalk enters the discussions saying that the proposed legislation is unworkable and that it “contradicts fundamental human rights.”
The Finnish Pirate Party has condemned a massive claim for damages against the operator of a file-sharing hub. The individual is facing a claim of 3.6m euros ($5.4m) from an anti-piracy group, this despite claims that there is no evidence of any specific infringements, merely high bandwidth usage on the individual’s ISP account.
Day eight of the trial between anti-piracy group AFACT and Aussie ISP iiNet. Today’s proceedings centered around the quality of the evidence supplied to the court by AFACT. It was ascertained that AFACT likely counted breaches more than once, with one of their lawyers admitting that one method used was not 100% accurate.
For years RIAA and MPAA members have hired companies to attack popular BitTorrent swarms in an attempt to interfere with their downloads. According to a recently published paper by New York University researchers, these attacks are highly ineffective. At best, they slow downloads for a few minutes, something most users don’t even notice.
Earlier this year the Swedish Parliament passed the IPRED law, making it easier for copyright holders to obtain file-sharers’ details from ISPs. In the months that passed, no music and movie sharers were sued. Instead, the first IPRED case dealt with pirated ebooks, but this case has now been thrown out by the Appeal Court.
With the support of at least 18 other politicians, UK Labour Party MP Tom Watson has tabled an Early Day Motion in which he questions government proposals to disconnect or throttle alleged file-sharers. Calling the measures “futile,” Watson says those accused should have the right to legal redress in a court of law.
Day seven of the trial between AFACT and Aussie ISP iiNet. In cross-examination of anti-piracy bosses from the movie studios, Paramount said it would complain to BitTorrent Inc about the unauthorized use of its logo, while AFACT’s boss was forced to admit his investigators could have themselves condoned infringements.
Several of the largest BitTorrent sites including Mininova, The Pirate Bay and isoHunt have joined a coalition of file-sharing partners in an ambitious project to help filmmakers get their work out to the public. Founded by the director of Steal This Film, the VODO project debuts its first title today.
Earlier this month an article appeared on a German site, purporting to detail the manner in which hugely popular Usenet company UseNeXT conducts its business. The article, titled “UseNeXT: Legitimate downloading of pirated movies” caught the eye of UseNeXT, which immediately sent threats of legal action to the author.
Day six of the copyright infringement trial between anti-piracy group AFACT and Aussie ISP iiNet. In addition to ongoing cross-examination of a DtecNet anti-piracy boss, a forensic investigator and veteran of the KaZaA case took the stand, admitting that an IP address alone is insufficient to identify an exact individual.
The Motion Picture Association has sent one of its big shot lobbyists to New Zealand to advocate tougher anti-piracy legislation, and to promote a propagandistic comic book set be handed out to thousands of local kids. Interestingly, the comic doesn’t touch the subject of copyright. Instead it uses false threats to scare children and parents about the dangers of file-sharing.
According to new research carried out by music group IFPI, around 40% of Swedes between 15 and 74 illegally share files every single day. The research, carried out through a web survey, reveals that there are 2.8 million sharers in the group, an increase compared to earlier surveys.
The top 10 most downloaded movies on BitTorrent, ‘Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince’ tops the chart this week followed by ‘Orphan’. ‘G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra’ completes the top three.
Day five of the copyright infringement trial between anti-piracy group AFACT and Aussie ISP iiNet was marked by the cross examination of anti-piracy tracking firm DtecNet, partly in private. The company also made some very unusual claims about the habits of “ordinary” BitTorrent users, who apparently regularly filter who they connect to.
This week three Pirate Bay crew members appealed the negative verdict in their controversial case against Dutch anti-piracy outfit BREIN. The defendants’ lawyer claimed that the evidence presented by BREIN was faked in an attempt to mislead the court. Now these faked documents, including proof that they are, have now leaked onto The Pirate Bay.
The Pirate Bay has been portrayed by Hollywood as the enemy of everything that’s creative. They say the site is the death knell of the entertainment industry, causing hundreds and thousands of people to lose their jobs. Meanwhile, The Pirate Bay is helping out yet another indie artist to promote her work.
BitSnoop is a brand new torrent indexing site with a clean interface and some pretty unique features. Like most other search engines BitSnoop allows its users to search through a database of more than a million torrents. However, the site also ensures that the torrents they host have backup trackers included, but no duplicates.
The Swedish Court of Appeal has denied three requests put forward by the defendants in the Pirate Bay case. They had hoped that a ruling from the European Court would be forthcoming in advance of the appeal to indicate the Bay is a legitimate search engine. That, and other requests asking for changes in locations and dates for the appeal, have been denied.
Unlike most people might think, piracy is not necessarily a bad thing for copyright holders. In fact, German pirate-tracking outfit DigiRights Solutions shows that copyright holders can earn 150 times more money from illicit downloads than from iTunes and other legal stores.
Yesterday, lawyers for Aussie ISP iiNet argued in court that the movie studios, represented in the case by AFACT, had a commercial relationship with BitTorrent.com. Now in day four of the trial, the studios have hit back, accusing iiNet of withholding information and focusing on the “legally irrelevant”.
In August, Dutch anti-piracy outfit BREIN won its case against The Pirate Bay, and the court ordered the defendants to block access to Dutch visitors. The case was appealed today and rightly so. It appears that the evidence presented by BREIN was faked in an attempt to mislead the court.
As the court case between anti-piracy group AFACT and ISP iiNet moves into its third day, an interesting element to the ISPs defense has been revealed. iiNet claims that the studios had contractual agreements with BitTorrent Inc, and even promoted their companies on BitTorrent.com, a confusing situation for potential downloaders.
Efforts by Warner Music to prevent music piracy have gone so far that indie artist Edwyn Collins is unable to share one of his own tracks on MySpace. In a response to the copyright drama, Collins’ manager explains that file-sharers are not the problem, but the labels themselves.
Today marked the second day of court action between several film and TV studios against Aussie ISP iiNet. The studios said the ISP knew about and could have done more to halt nearly 95,000 infringements. iiNet hit back, claiming AFACT’s figures had been artificially inflated by a flawed process.
The Pirate Bay is going on a road trip through Europe, one they hope to end today in a former NATO bunker. After a move from Sweden to the Ukraine, The Pirate Bay has now arrived at CyberBunker, an ISP that can provide them with a facility that can resist a nuclear attack as well as electromagnetic pulse bombs.
After six months of absence, a brand new season of TorrentFreak TV starts today. This week’s episode covers The Pirate Bay drama, Rapidshare, Tucker Max, BitLet and a whole lot more.
Today marked the start of the civil action between several film and TV studios against Aussie ISP iiNet. The studios, under the umbrella of AFACT, asserted in court that iiNet did nothing to stop its customers sharing copyright media via BitTorrent. The ISP will essentially refute the claim, and will utilize a multi-layered defense.
Last Friday The Pirate Bay moved to Ukraine after its Swedish bandwidth supplier was forced to stop servicing the tracker. In the new setup, traffic to TPB is routed through The Netherlands, but anti-piracy outfit BREIN has now asked ISP NForce to stop handling TPB’s traffic. As a result the site is now down for most people.
The top 10 most downloaded movies on BitTorrent, ‘G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra’ tops the chart this week followed by ‘Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen’. ‘Star Trek’ completes the top three.
One of the oldest groups at the top of the so-called piracy pyramid has been taken down by the notorious Swedish Anti-Piracy Bureau. Unusually there have been no arrests and no legal action. Instead the group ‘Svenne/Redcross’ has been forced to apologize and spread FUD about the security of other groups.
Instead of switching on the TV, several million people use BitTorrent clients to catch up with their favorite TV-shows. The leading TV-torrent distribution site EZTV has more than doubled its visitors in a year, and there is no sign that this growth will stop anytime soon.
A music industry consultant has changed her Linkedin profile when it was revealed that the music lessons she’s giving in schools aren’t quite as they seem. Ruth Katz, who worked in anti-piracy enforcement for EMI and still works for the company as a consultant, is lecturing kids as young as five on anti-piracy issues.
Dozens of movie theaters worldwide have equipped their employees with night vision goggles to spy on customers, hoping to spot illegal recording devices. Following complaints alleging invasion of privacy, in Germany the local authorities ruled that theaters have to warn their customers if they use such equipment, rendering their piracy trap useless.
The UK has been consulting over proposals to deal with file-sharing, but it appears to have been an empty gesture. Speaking the day after the consultation closed, the MP in charge is already keen to move against P2P, noting the necessity of it during interview. If only his reasons for for doing so were based in truth.
In August the bandwidth supplier to The Pirate Bay was ordered by a court to disconnect the world’s largest BitTorrent tracker from the Internet. Within hours the site had relocated to a new host which immediately received similar entertainment industry threats. Now it seems the Bay has left Sweden, setting sail for Ukraine.
A few hours ago Internet search mogul Google removed the Pirate Bay frontpage from its search results. According to the company this action was taken after it received a DMCA takedown request, which is odd since there are no torrents to be found on the homepage of The Pirate Bay.
Following an order from a prosecutor, last year Italian ISPs started to block subscriber access to the Pirate Bay. The Pirate Bay was not planning to go down without a fight though – the decision was appealed and TPB won. Now, several months later, this victory has been nullified by the Supreme Court.
On April 1st 2009, Sweden implemented its controversial IPRED law which promised to make it easier to track down those sharing illicit media via the Internet. Now, exactly 6 months on, what has been achieved with this legislation and what effect has it had on the country’s file-sharers?
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