For those people who’ve been using BitTorrent for longer than 6 years, the name Suprnova.org is likely to bring back memories. In the first half of the previous decade it was the largest BitTorrent site on the Internet. Legal pressure eventually led it its demise, but this week the site has been relaunched by its founder as a video portal, complete with a little BitTorrent flavor.
In the fall of 2002, just months after Bram Cohen released his first version of BitTorrent to the public, a new website called Suprnova.org was born. Founded by Andrej Preston, a Slovenian teenager better known as Sloncek, the site quickly gathered momentum.
In the months that followed Suprnova grew out to become the largest BitTorrent site on the Internet, with over a million visitors a day. But as with many other BitTorrent sites it didn’t last. Along with huge popularity came the legal threats, and these eventually made Andrej decide to close the site in December 2004.
In 2007, Suprnova returned to the BitTorrent stage, resurrected by the folks behind The Pirate Bay who were offered the domain by Andrej. Unfortunately, the site never even came close to its former glory, with just a few thousand visitors passing by each month.
Last year Andrej decided to ask the domain back, as he wanted to use it for a new project. As he’s currently in San Francisco and attending the Academy of Art University where he focuses on TV and online video production, Andrej decided to use the Suprnova brand for his very own video portal.
The new Suprnova officially launched a few days ago, and we decided to catch up with Andrej – who’s also the director of TorrentFreak TV – to see what it’s all about.
“SuprNova.org is creating entertaining content which is given to users free of charge,” Andrej told us. “It is licensed under Creative Commons with the idea that everyone has the chance to view the content at any time, however they wish.”
“We do not believe that giving away everything for free is bad. We do not believe that re-distributing shows is bad. We believe in the free flow of information. We believe in a world where a copy does not equal lost profit,” he added.
The video portal features unique short format videos produced by and for Suprnova.org. The videos can be streamed online, and true to the BitTorrent roots of the site a .torrent download is also offered for each show.
“We know that you might be on your 5-minute break and want to watch something that is going to make you laugh. That is why we are dedicated to making shows, which are no longer than 3 minutes. Ideally they range from 15 to 45 seconds long.”
TorrentFreak TV is one of the shows that are featured on the site, and although we haven’t seen a new episode in months, it’s good to see it listed there. In the coming weeks Andrej and his team will focus on releasing more unique content.
“New content will be added daily and we want users to be able to find something new on the website every time they come. As the site grows, the production of the shows will increase new shows will be released more often,” Andrej said.
What was once the largest BitTorrent index has now returned as a modest video portal, but one with great aspirations. We do of course wish Andrej, Stacia and the rest of the team the very best and we’re looking forward to seeing some new TorrentFreak TV episodes on Suprnova in the near future.