File-hosting service Mediafire decided to block all incoming traffic from the popular media search engine FilesTube. Commenting on the move Mediafire’s co-founder explains that it was a logical step as their service was never intended to be indexed in public.
With millions of daily visitors FilesTube is among the most frequently visited websites on the Internet.
Founded in 2007, the Polish-operated site is the largest meta-search engine for content hosted on cyberlockers such as Hotfile, 4Shared and Mediafire. FilesTube refers a significant amount of traffic to these sites, but not all of them are very happy about it.
In fact, Mediafire don’t want to be indexed at all, took action to block all incoming traffic from FilesTube last month.
“As a private service MediaFire was never designed to be indexed which is why we don’t have an index,” Mediafire co-founder Tom Langridge explains to TorrentFreak.
“Our meta tags for file access are set to not-indexable and services like Google, Bing and other search engines honor this. FilesTube was not honoring this and thus we were forced to block them.”
While the decision makes sense from Mediafire’s point of view, it would be naive not to relate the recent change to the increased debate about the legality of cyberlockers’ business models. After the Megaupload raids and arrests Mediafire and other file-hosting services have been publicly scrutinized by Hollywood.
Mediafire was among the five cyberlockers labeled as rogue sites by the movie studios recently. Mediafire was quick to refute the allegations and emphasize that they run a perfectly legitimate business.
This week the debate continues when RapidShare published a set of guidelines cyberlockers should follow to deter mass-copyright infringement.
While we assume Mediafire’s recent change is in part aimed at deterring infringement, it is no silver bullet.
The FilesTube block stops users from clicking through to Mediafire, but it doesn’t prevent links being indexed, as FilesTube gathers this information from third-party sources. This means that FilesTube users can still find content on MediaFire, but instead of clicking on a direct link they have to manually paste the URL in their browsers.
FilesTube points out this workaround on their Facebook page.
Update: The article was updated to make clear that Mediafire made these changes last month.