Tag Archives: Bittorrent

Internet 1. RIAA/MPAA 0.

Okay okay, so there was the whole MegaUpload thing… a-aand… Napster… ahem… But this is an assured victory for the Internet!

Tribler Makes BitTorrent Impossible to Shut Down

While the file-sharing ecosystem is currently filled with uncertainty and doubt, researchers at Delft University of Technology continue to work on their decentralized BitTorrent network. Their Tribler client doesn’t require torrent sites to find or download content, as it is based on pure peer-to-peer communication. “The only way to take it down is to take the Internet down,” the lead researcher says.

The Tribler BitTorrent client is no newcomer to the BitTorrent scene. It has been in development for more than 5 years and has delivered many innovative features, which have mostly been ignored by the masses.

Today, however, Tribler is more relevant than ever before.

Developed by a team of researchers at Delft University of Technology, the main goal is to come up with a robust implementation of BitTorrent that doesn’t rely on central servers. Instead, Tribler is designed to keep BitTorrent alive, even when all torrent search engines, indexes and trackers are pulled offline.

“Our key scientific quest is facilitating unbounded information sharing,” Tribler leader Dr. Pouwelse tells TorrentFreak.

“We simply don’t like unreliable servers. With Tribler we have achieved zero-seconds downtime over the past six years, all because we don’t rely on shaky foundations such as DNS, web servers or search portals.”

So how does it work?

Like many other BitTorrent clients, Tribler has a search box at the top of the application. However, the search results that appear when users type in a keyword don’t come from a central index. Instead, they come directly from other peers.

Tribler’s decentralized search results

Downloading a torrent is also totally decentralized. When a user clicks on one of the search results, the meta-data is pulled in from another peer and the download starts immediately. Tribler is based on the standard BitTorrent protocol and uses regular BitTorrent trackers to communicate with other peers. But, it can also continue downloading when a central tracker goes down.

The same is true for spam control. Where most torrent sites have a team of moderators to delete viruses, malware and fake files, Tribler uses crowd-sourcing to keep the network clean. Content is verified by user generated “channels”, which can be “liked” by others. When more people like a channel, the associated torrents get a boost in the search results.

The latest addition to Tribler is a Wikipedia-style editing system dubbed “Open2Edit,” where users have the option to edit names and descriptions of torrents in public channels. All without a central server, totally decentralized.

open2Edit

According to Dr. Pouwelse, Tribler is fully capable of resisting any pressure from outside, and it will still work when all torrent sites and trackers are gone. It simply can’t be shutdown, blocked or censored, whatever laws politicians may come up with.

“The only way to take it down is to take The Internet down.” Pouwelse told us.

One thing that could theoretically cause issues, is the capability for starting users to find new peers. To be on the safe side the Tribler team is still looking for people who want to act as so called bootstraptribler peers. These users will act as superpeers, who distribute lists of active downloaders.

“Together with software bugs and a code cleanup, that is now our last known weakness,” says Pouwelse.

While the Tribler client only has a few thousand users at the moment, for avid file-sharers it must be a relief to know that it’s out there. No matter what crazy laws may pass in the future, people will always be able to share.

Those who want to give it a spin are welcome download Tribler here. It’s completely Open Source and with a version for Windows, Mac and Linux.

Source

Advertisements
Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Afraid of The Pirate Bay going away? It’s only 90 MB – Download it!

TPB Logo
Soon The Pirate Bay will stop linking to .torrent files. Instead, the world’s largest BitTorrent site will only list so-called magnet links. One of the advantages of the switch is that The Pirate Bay will be much more portable, and easier to copy. A new torrent listing all titles and magnet links on The Pirate Bay proves this point, as the public can download a copy that fits easily on a small USB stick – or even a few dozen floppies.

Last month The Pirate Bay announced that it will stop hosting torrents in the very near future.

This change is expected to go into effect before the end of the month. From then on, Pirate Bay users can only download files through magnet links.

The Pirate Bay team told TorrentFreak that one of the advantages of the transition to a “magnet site” is that it requires relatively little bandwidth to host a proxy site. This is needed, because The Pirate Bay is currently blocked in several countries, and more are bound to follow in the months to come.

Without torrents, the Pirate Bay also becomes extremely portable which makes it possible for people to download a personal backup. As we said before, such a copy would easily fit on a thumb drive. Pirate Bay user “allisfine” was intrigued by this idea and decided to find out how small a copy of the torrents site would be.

“I did a complete snapshot of ALL the Pirate Bay torrents, in case somebody wants to close it or something similarly crazy,” he told TorrentFreak.

Using this script, “allisfine” managed to copy the title, id, file size, seeds, leechers and magnet links of 1,643,194 torrents. Comments were not copied to keep the files as small as possible, and the end result is a full copy of all magnet links on The Pirate Bay in a 90 megabytes file, 164 megabytes unzipped.

A copy of The Pirate Bay
TPB copy

There is some confusion as to whether the 1,643,194 torrents are indeed a full copy of the site, as The Pirate Bay itself lists 4,199,832 torrents in the footer link on its site. However, the latter stats apply to the number of torrents that are available on several public trackers, The Pirate Bay itself only hosts a fraction of those.

With the release of the copy everyone can now download a personal backup of The Pirate Bay in a few minutes. Although searching the copy isn’t as convenient as using The Pirate Bay itself, there is little doubt that someone else will soon come up with another script that solves this problem.

Recent history has shown that when a site is threatened with shutdown, or censored, the Internet is very quick to come up with a workaround. And with thousands of backups of The Pirate Bay floating around, it will be very hard at this point to get rid of the famous torrent site.

What’s perhaps even more striking is that the greatest arch rival of a billion dollar entertainment industry is nothing more than 164 megabytes of text. Something to think about.

The above was reposted from TorrentFreak.

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

BTJunkie shut down

It seems that BTJunkie has decided to voluntarily shut down.

BTJunkie goodbye

Damn… I never used them personally, but… that all of this nonsense cropping up ever since the MU incident is affecting so many… so many sites going dark, going offline… I can’t say I feel good about it.

BTJunkie was an advanced BitTorrent search engine operating between 2005 and 2012. It used a web crawler (similar to Google) to search for torrent files from other torrent sites and store it in its database. It had nearly 4,000,000 active torrents and about 4,200 torrents added daily (compared to runner-up Torrent Portal with 1,500), making it the largest torrent site indexer on the web. During 2011, BTJunkie was the 5th most popular BitTorrent site.

On 5 February 2012, BTJunkie decided to voluntarily shut down and left a notice on its front web page that reads “This is the end of the line my friends. The decision does not come easy, but we’ve decided to voluntarily shut down. We’ve been fighting for years for your right to communicate, but it’s time to move on. It’s been an experience of a lifetime, we wish you all the best!”

Information borrowed from Wikipedia.

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Piracy

Big business companies like the MPAA and RIAA are hell bent to sue the living shit out of people engaging in acts of digital piracy – Soccer moms and little Timmy included. The reasons they give for this is that they lose substantial amounts of income and stealing is wrong.

Well, you know what? You’re greedy little fucks. That’s what.

These organizations already make massive amounts of profits. They just want even more.

But, alright. Stealing is wrong. Let me explain what the problem with all of this is though… You see, these big corporations and organizations… their problem is that they’re stuck in the past. They’re pushing the same old business models they have for decades now and are expecting to keep doing well. Well, Newsflash: The world changes. You can either adapt to your consumer base or die.

Piracy exists for 2 reasons: 1) Money. 2) It’s in the format the consumers want. Now, I’m gonna go into this a little bit.

First of all, the money aspect. Yes, money. When you get right down to it, these companies are greedy as fuck. We’re in a Recession – is that what they’re calling it? Seems more to me like a Depression to be honest. We’re so far in debt right now that we may never climb out. The amount of money we owe doesn’t even exist it’s so much! Right, right… sorry, getting a little sidetracked here. What was I saying..? Ah, right, money…

Yes well, you see… When you charge $1 per song, and assuming minimum wage is somewhere around $8 (which, let’s be honest… it’s a bit less than that), then that’s about 8 songs you could get per 1 hour worked. Now, these 8 songs… let’s be very generous and say they’re 4 minutes long each (realistically, they may be 2-3 minutes long even). So, these 8 songs… They provide a total of 32 minutes of listening. But let’s go ahead and round down to 30, since we know most won’t be 4 minutes anyways so we have a nice clean figure. Okay, so 30 minutes. For 1 hour of work you get 30 minutes of music. You see the problem here?

Why the hell do songs cost so fucking much?!

I can listen to the radio all day every day – for fucking free! That’s right, absolutely free. And these bastards want to charge $1 per song?! What the hell is wrong with these greedy fucks… No, I digress. That’s rhetorical, and answered in and of itself. They’re greedy fucks, obviously.

The disparity between work and enjoyment should not be so strewn. But okay, that’s just music. I’ll get a little into more of why this is ridiculous a little later.

Movies are up next. Yes, movies. A movie provides about 1-2 hours of enjoyment, probably averaging somewhere around 1hr 30m, correct? I think that’s a fairly safe statement to make. For that, you’re looking at about $10-15 or so. For physical media, that’s fairly understandable. We’re getting closer now.

Games. You pay ~$50-70 for a computer game. Whether you buy the physical media (getting the box, game burned to dvd(s), instruction manual, and what have you), or if you purchase a digital edition and just download it online, that price does not change. Herein lies the problem.

Do you really think they need to charge that much money for a piece of digital media? They have no manufacturing costs, no shipping costs, no packaging costs. Nothing. Maybe bandwidth, but not enough to justify the same price.

This first aspect, the money aspect, is the reason people pirate things. They’re getting fucking ripped off, and we’re in a recession. We don’t have that kind of money to throw around on entertainment. That’s not the consumer’s problem, that’s the entertainment industry’s problem. If you don’t address the problem, then obviously something like piracy will crop up.

Anime. Anime is a big one. The Japanese just can’t understand why their products don’t sell here. They charge about $30-90 per series, and then they wonder what went wrong. Okay, I can watch an anime series in about a day or 2. Say I watch 1,000 series – not that unrealistic, if I did 1 a day it could happen in a couple years. That’s $90,000 – just on a little bit of entertainment!

The worst part is, and this is really getting into our second issue: Format. The companies aren’t even offering what the people want. Anime is a great example. When they go to sell Anime here in the US, they do it with plain yellow subs. When you look at what the people are watching, it’s white subs, sometimes with a stroked border in a color of perhaps the hair of the character that is speaking. Then there’s fancy karaoke/song subs and the text/signs are actually given an effort to blend into the animation itself so it actually looks like it’s a part of it and not just a translation on the screen. That’s what people want.

But not just that, but most people don’t want physical media. They want digital media. They have to charge a large premium for the physical media because it takes so many damn DVD’s or Bluray discs and packaging to be able to distribute it, and there are costs associated with all of that. In the end though, it’s put on the consumer.

Let’s look at it this way… You have Cable, you watch Cartoon Network or Adult Swim. How much do you pay for that channel per month? Like what, $10 a month (but you get not just those channels but a shitload of others too)? Yeah okay, and you can watch that 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 31 days a month.

So why is it that we can pay less than $10 a month to watch all of this animated entertainment, 744 hours a month worth, and then we have to pay $90 for about 480 minutes? Do you not see a problem with this? Because I do. That’s about 8 hours by the way. 744 vs 8. $10 vs $90. I mean damn, wouldn’t you expect the prices to be reversed? I sure as hell would, but they aren’t. Cause nobody in their right fucking mind is going to pay $90 a month for 1 TV channel. It gets worse. If we want to match those 744 hours of entertainment by purchasing the series, then we have to purchase a staggering 93 of them. Do you want to know how much that would cost? $8,370. I didn’t miss a decimal place there. 8 thousand and 3 hundred dollars.

Do you even make $8,370 a month? I sure as hell don’t. I make $10 a month though – I could pay that.

And I mean, this is what the problem is… These companies are fucking retarded, and they’re ripping us all off, and I mean bad. I guess we’re still talking about money though, aren’t we?

But I guess these things go fairly hand-in-hand.

The reason they can’t sell, the reason that so many people pirate is because they aren’t selling what people want for the prices people want. Now, don’t try to twists this around like “well everyone wants a Ferrari, should you just be allowed to go and steal one because they’re too expensive?” It’s not like that. This is digital media. There are costs for productions, but bandwidth is incredibly cheap, especially when you look at technologies like Bittorrent.

People want digital media, and they want to pay a price relative to what they’re getting.

You know what? Back in the day, you could watch something on TV or listen to something on the radio, pop in a tape if you like it and record it. Watch it again any time you want, as much as you want. It was quite popular. You know, those things called VCR’s that existed back in ancient times. But now, you do that and oh no, it’s not okay anymore. Now that’s stealing! That’s piracy! Something is morally wrong with you, you horrible despicable person!

I mean, really? Are these people serious?

I tell you what though, things like Netflix where you pay a subscription fee to watch as many movies a month as you want, that’s a step in the right direction.

The problem is, they think that if you do that… you watch the movie once, maybe a few times, then send it back. It’s renting, y’know, or streaming. The problem is, they don’t realize people can use the same methods they did back in the VCR era. We can rip those DVD’s and Blurays right onto our computers into a nice fancy little mkv format and watch it any time we want.

Don’t think people do it? Well lemme tell you, they do. How do you think piracy even spreads? Someone has to be getting this physical media and ripping it in the first place to even spread the digital media. It’s the same thing we as consumers have been used to for decades now. It’s how society has evolved.

The problem is that these corporations and organizations aren’t evolving with the rest of us. They want more money, they don’t want to change.

If there was a subscription service that allowed you to listen to as much music as you wanted every month (and your choice of music too), watch whatever movies you want, watch whatever TV or Anime series you want, do you have any idea how substantially piracy would drop?

Hell, you could even drop it into categories. Movies – $10 a month. Music – $10 a month. Anime – $10 a month. You pay $30 a month. A decent amount, but reasonable enough. People would do this, and it would be fair.

Not only that, but all of these hundreds of millions of things pirated for absolutely no profit to the company at all, they would suddenly be making profits off of all of these people that decided to subscribe to this, because it’s legal and because it’s convenient.

People don’t mind paying for a product when the price is reasonable, it’s the product they want, and it’s convenient for them.

Sure, some people may still pirate things. But a substantial chunk of people wouldn’t feel a need to anymore. And once a system like that is in place, then they could crack down on piracy.

Why? Because it wouldn’t be needed anymore.

The reason why any crackdown on piracy will. not. work. right now is because it is necessary. If they try to stomp it out, it will just pop back up even harder and stronger.

It’s like trying to kill fleas. You can kill them one at a time, you can even vacuum and bomb your house. It may kill them out for awhile, but your pet that walks outside and comes back in with a ton of fleas on it, it’s going to bring the same problem right back.

You have to get rid of the root of the problem to eliminate the problem or it’s just going to keep cropping up. The problem isn’t that people are stealing things. Why do people steal things? They don’t do it for no reason. I just mentioned the reasons it happened earlier above. They fix that, then they fix piracy.

It’s like The Prohibition. You try to outlaw booze, it only makes it even more popular. The harder you crack down, the harder the people fight back. What you have to do is legalize it and regulate it, and that’s what needs to happen with the entertainment industries.

The practice is downloading whatever people want, as much as they want. This needs to be sanctioned and it needs to be at an affordable price. If people could do this with a reasonable price tag then there would be no reason for piracy, just like there would be no reason to smuggle moonshine if you could just stroll down to the corner store and get a pack of Bud.

We’re in a Recession. Just because you have it available doesn’t mean people are going to buy it. You have to take that into account. The price needs to be reasonable, and the format needs to be what the consumers want.

When you offer a product the consumers want with a price tag they can afford, you’ll get your profits. You’ll get your business.

Learn to adapt, evolve. Figure out how the world works.

On another tangent, it would probably be a better idea to take a cue from the Television and Radio industries and instead of having to charge people so much, you can have sponsored advertisements that cover the costs and make you a profit and allow people to get the products and entertainment they want for either much cheaper than it would be, or for free. This could be an alternative to the 10-10-10 a month deal. Either 10-10-10 and no adverts, or you can have a ton of adverts and get it for free, or at least much cheaper. Free sounds nice though, dunnit? Anyways, some food for thought.

-Tiff out.~

Tagged , , , , , , , , ,
Advertisements