Posts tagged "Filesharing"

Prince Targets Facebook Users in $22m Live Concert Piracy Lawsuit

International superstar Prince is back on the copyright warpath, yet again targeting individuals who are quite possibly some of his biggest fans. In a lawsuit filed in the Northern District of California, Prince is chasing down fans who found links to his live concerts and posted them on Facebook and blogs. The unlucky 22 individuals, 20 of whom are yet to be identified, face a damages claim of $22 million.

prince1Prince Rogers Nelson is undoubtedly a great and prolific singer/songwriter, but if people want to be a fan they better pay for every last second of his music they listen to – or else.

Prince loves to file copyright infringement lawsuits and at the start of 2014 another has landed, ready to stir up a storm as the details become known and the case develops.

Filed in the United States District Court in the Northern District of California, the lawsuit targets 22 individuals, only two of which are referenced by their real names. The others remain ‘Does’ although eight are indicated by their online nicknames.

Sadly, with names such as PurpleHouse2, PurpleKissTwo and NPRUNIVERSE it’s difficult to see these people as anything other than Prince fans. But it is Doe 8 – THEULTIMATEBOOTLEGEXPERIENCE – that gives the clearest indication of what this lawsuit is all about.

Prince
 

“The Defendants in this case engage in massive infringement and bootlegging of Prince’s material,” the lawsuit reads.

“For example, in just one of the many takedown notices sent to Google with respect to Doe 2 (aka DaBang319), Prince identified 363 separate infringing links to file sharing services, with each link often containing copies of bootlegged performances of multiple separate musical compositions.”

While it’s clear by now that Prince doesn’t share the same opinions as the Grateful Dead or Nine Inch Nails on bootlegs, for once a file-sharing site isn’t in the cross hairs. The lawsuit says that the defendants used Facebook and Google’s Blogger “to accomplish their unlawful activity”, either by running fanpages or blogs and linking to live concert recordings without permission.

The complaint lists several pieces of audio offered by the defendants, concluding Prince performances from 2011 in North Carolina, 2002 in Oakland and 1983 in Chicago. Apparently even the circulation of a 31-year-old live set damages Prince’s earning capability, with the singer leveling charges of direct copyright infringement, ‘unauthorized fixation and trafficking in sound recordings’, contributory copyright infringement and bootlegging.

“Prince has suffered and is continuing to suffer damages in an amount according to proof, but no less than $1 million per Defendant,” the lawsuit reads.

Prince has a long tradition of suing anyone who dares to use his material without permission, but doesn’t always carry through on his threats. A 2007 effort to sue The Pirate Bay went nowhere. This new lawsuit is likely to go much further.

Update Jan 28: Without giving any reason, Prince has now dropped the lawsuit. The dismissal was without prejudice so could be raised again in the future

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Posted by plates55 - February 5, 2014 at 1:59 pm

Categories: Uncategorized   Tags: , , , , , , ,

The 30 Best Torrent Download Sites of 2014

January 5, 2014, several torrent download sites have earned kudos from our About.com readers. This list is the text version of the Visual Guide to Torrent Sites.
NOTE: this list is in random order. Special thanks to all the readers who contribute their recommendations so that this list stays current.
Submit Your Torrent Site Suggestion: you are welcome to suggest a torrent site for inclusion in this list.
Disclaimer and legal warning for new torrent users: About.com does not condone illegal sharing of copyrighted material. While P2P file sharing technology is completely legal, many of the files traded through P2P are indeed copyrighted. Uploading these copyrighted files puts you at risk of a civil lawsuit in the USA, Canada, Australia, and the UK. While these lawsuits are often class-action suits, filed against groups of users who blatantly copy and distribute copyrighted materials, some lawsuits are harshly targeted at making examples of individual downloaders. These P2P civil lawsuits are very real, and whether or not they are successful, they are extreme financial and emotional burdens on the defendant.
ISP warning: your ISP may choose to release logs of your downloading/uploading activity to potential copyright plaintiffs. The more megabytes you download, the more you risk being sued by copyright protection groups.
Torrent Download: Beginner’s Guide to Torrent File Sharing.

Recommended: Protect your file-sharing identity by using a VPN connection.
Related: What It’s Like to Be a Torrent P2P Administrator – See About.com’s interview with Jack, the co-owner of Torlock.com.

  1. Torlock: Torlock is special. These folks actually pay their users commission for uncovering fake torrents and reporting it to their community. In a world of phony files, this is a tremendous service. If you are a regular downloader, and are tired of wasted downloads and fraudulent files, give Torlock a try.
  2. Kick Ass Torrents: this site is a favorite with a growing community. The interface is a distinctive earth color, and the search results display in a useful format of columns, including torrent health. The best part of Kick Ass Torrents is their comment and feedback system… the user community watches the quality of torrents, and offers their recommendations and warnings.
  3. Torrent Funk: Torrent Funk is a very popular torrent search site that now supports commenting. While Torrent Funk also supports ‘verified status’ tagging, which some people prefer to comments. The interface can be difficult to discern between sponsored ads and the actual torrent links. But the Torrent Funk site layout is pleasing, the cross- movie recommendations are very helpful, and several About.com readers highly recommended Torrent Funk. Give this site a try, and watch if it will grow over time.
  4. ThePirateBay.se: since being shut down in 2009, The Pirate Bay refuses to stay down. This latest TPB Swedish domain name version claims to have over 1.5 million torrents available. The servers themselves are constantly changing location to stay ahead of the authorities, and this seems to make the website experience inconsistent for speed. If you don’t mind repeatedly checking back because The Pirate Bay is sometimes slow to render, definitely support this longtime P2P icon as it tries to rebuild its former glory.
  5. Isohunt.to: Isohunt is reborn!  After being shut down by the MPAA on October 17, 2013, Isohunt has been resurrected with a new domain name in a new country.  Please support this longtime champion of P2P file sharing!
  6. SeedPeer.me: SeedPeer is a very large database of over 3 million torrent files. The search interface is simple, and the keyword cloud map helps as a discovery means to find interesting movies, tv shows, and music artists. Fans speak very highly of SeedPeer, so do consider trying it out.
  7. Vertor: this torrent service claims to filter out bad torrents, viruses, DRM locks, passwords, and fakes.
  8. Torrent Crazy: this P2P site is very good for non-English language movies and music. If you’re seeking Italian, Russian, French, and files in other European languages, consider trying Torrent Crazy.
  9. Torrents.to: this site has a Tonga country domain name, but certainly offers plentiful metasearching of movies and music in English and Spanish. There are some popup advertisements that are annoying, but perhaps you might like the framed interface for searching other torrent sites.
  10. RARBG.com: RARBG is a very small torrent site, with less than a half-million torrents in its index. Nevertheless, multiple readers at About.com have recommended that RARBG be a community on your search for a good P2P experience. Perhaps try them and give us feedback on if agree with their opinions of the service.
  11. TAKE.FM: Take is a smaller library than other torrent search sites, but the community here strives to keep the torrent quality high and the fake torrents out. Like most successful torrent sites, TAKE does not store the actual music and movie files on their servers, and instead focuses on helping its members find their sources elsewhere. Try TAKE out and let us know if you like their service.
  12. TorrentHound: at over 4.7 million torrents, TorrentHound is one of the largest players in the torrent P2P game. The site does enforce good use of ‘white space’ in the sidebars, so scanning the pages can be easier for most readers. Unfortunately, the comments counts are not included in the initial search results, so you’ll have to click into the individual files to see reader comments.
  13. Thunderbytes: this private site is a smaller community, which is good for reducing the number of false torrents.  You can join Thunderbytes by either getting sponsored by an existing member, or by becoming a donating sponsor yourself.
  14. FullDLS:  at over 2.5 million torrents, FullDLS is one of the larger torrent search sites today.  The advertising is a bit cumbersome, and you’ll have difficulty finding what is worth clicking and what is just sponsored banner advertising.  But the site is recommended by readers, and the search catalog does have popular files.
  15. LimeTorrents: LimeTorrents looks like most other torrent sites: tabular lists of torrents, with girly porn advertising in the sidebars. But LimeTorrents does have a growing database of nearly 2 million torrents, and multiple readers speak highly of the quality of seeds and legit files in the Lime catalog.
  16. ExtraTorrent.com: ExtraTorrent.com is very visual and very busy.  But the thumbnails and file information at this site are tremendous. This site is definitely worth trying, as it is very browsing-friendly for discovering movies and music artists.
  17. Monova.org: this service is another example of clean and simple interface style. Additionally, Monova goes beyond torrents to also index newsgroup sites (e.g. alt.binaries.highspeed), which can sometimes be faster than torrent swarm downloads. Advertising is as unobtrusive as possible on the Monova pages themselves. Popup adult advertising will be a turn off for some users, but if you can work around that, this search service has a strong catalog of modern torrents.
  18. VCDQ.com: VCDQ.com isn’t technically a torrent search site; rather, VCDQ specializes in verifying torrents. VCDQ employs a committee of serious users to confirm that torrents do indeed exist for thousands of titles, especially brand new movie releases. Use VCDQ to confirm that a title is available, then copy the torrent name to paste into a search engine like Isohunt.com. Definitely give VCDQ.com a try; this is a great resource for avoiding fake torrent files. July 27 news: VCDQ is having website issues. There is still no word why their website is not working. Let’s hope for the speedy return of this excellent service!
  19. 1337X.org: This is a very clean-looking site, with a nice presentation of the comment count for each of your search results. The database is less than a million torrents as of November 2012, but several readers have recommended 1337X.
    • BitSnoop.com: is the largest known database of torrents today.  With over 18 million indexed files, one could argue that this is the only site you’d need to search at.  Try BitSnoop for yourself and see how it presents its results with its comments and ratings… you might like this site as much as other readers do.
    • TorrentDownloads.Net: with over 6 million torrent files in its catalog, this site is considered the second-largest torrent index on the Web today. To help you navigate the sheer magnitude of its database, TorrentDownloads also  publishes a filter to see only those torrents that have passed verification testing.
    • H33T.com: This is a substantial library of torrents, exceeding 4 million indexed files as of November 2012.  The black background isn’t for everyone’s tastes, but the volume of movies and music and tv shows make this a worthwhile destination. Beware the popup advertising, though… advertisers definitely believe that H33T is worth advertising at.
    • Torrentz.com: this metasearch engine may look a bit amateurish, but it works well. It conveniently scours other torrent search sites for you, arguably saving you 20 minutes of search time when you are seeking that one particular song or movie.
    • btscene.com: btscene is a longtime player in the file sharing game. This website does have annoying popups and adult advertising, but it does offer a solid library of torrents. It does a good job of featuring very recent torrents (good for people who follow television shows), and presenting many browsing choices at a glance.
    • Toorgle.com: Toorgle is a torrent metasearch engine based on Google technology. Like any metasearch service, your searches result from multiple other search engines on the Web. Toorgle retrieves the location of these files for you as a kind of matchmaking service. It’s quick to use and can help you find rare or obscure torrents. Just make sure you are careful in which torrent you choose at Toorgle; because Toorgle will show results from dodgy torrent sites, take the time to check that a torrent has positive comments and is verified by users before you download. Careful and experienced users comment that Toorgle can be very helpful, if you know how to pick the good torrents from the bad.
    • Fenopy.eu: has some compelling features. Fenopy has a Spartan and clean interface, and a portion of its library is dedicated to verified torrents. Easy sorting of the tabular results and a catalog of the most popular torrents will please most users. Advertising does pop up and distract, but no more than other torrent sites. Definitely give Fenopy.eu a try.
    • TorrentZap: at ~2 million torrents indexed, TorrentZap is not as large of a catalog as other torrent search engines (e.g. Fenopy.eu has over 5 million torrents). And, as with all sites, you need to endure advertising at TorrentZap to keep it a no-cost service. But the interface is clean, bright, and easy to navigate. Try this site out, skip past the ‘external search results’ to find the real torrents at TorrentZap, and let us know what you think.
    • Nowtorrents.com: Now Torrents (allegedly) offers a special service: it filters out fake/dead torrents. It also offers date-range searching, so you can search for specific years of content (e.g. Flight of the Conchords, 2008).
    • Torrentcafe.com: this site needs to grow its user base some more. But Torrentcafe comes highly recommended by several About.com readers, so please give it a try and let us know how you like it.
    • YourBitTorrent.com: this site has gone through changes over the years. The sponsored download links are annoying, especially for beginners who are not used to visually filtering out the paid advertising links. But readers at About.com have spoken highly of this site. If you are an intermediate or advanced downloader, visit YouBitTorrent and decide for yourself if you like the interface.
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Posted by plates55 - January 7, 2014 at 1:45 pm

Categories: Piracy   Tags: , , , , , , ,

File-Sharing Site Was A Year-Long Pirate Honeypot

A site founded by a former moderator of one of the most popular file-hosting and uploader hangouts has admitted today that his site was a honeypot setup to capture data on pirate activity. WDF, a former senior staff member at popular discussion forum WJunction, says that in the 12 months since his site went online he’s been grabbing information about uploaders and file-hosts. “I suckered shitloads of you,” he said today as he announced the acquisition of his site by a U.S.-based anti-piracy company.

snitchParanoia can be high in the file-sharing world so it will come as no surprise that there are regular rumors that site X or user Y cannot be trusted. While it’s almost certain that on some sites there are staff members who don’t have the community’s best interests at heart, evidence of serious foul play is a rare occurrence.

Today, however, the owner of a file-sharing discussion forum confirmed that his site was actually a pirate honeypot, setup with the aim of gathering otherwise confidential information on uploaders, file-hosts and web companies involved in the piracy ecosystem. Adding insult to injury, that site and the admin’s services have been acquired by a U.S.-based anti-piracy company.

WDF, real name unknown, is the founder of UploaderTalk.com, a web forum designed to attract individuals who like to make money from uploading files to file-hosting sites. Part of the idea is that they join the site and interact with others with similar aims, such as representatives from file-hosting sites touting their affiliate schemes.

UploaderTalk was founded pretty much a year ago today after WDF was banned from a similar but much larger site called WJunction, probably the largest uploader/file-hosting hangout anywhere on the web.

However, WDF wasn’t any old member. After joining up to WJunction in September 2011, WDF later became a moderator then super moderator on the site, meaning that he had access to a lot of private information such as email and IP addresses. The implications for file-hosting sites and uploaders hardly need to be pointed out.

It’s not clear why WDF was eventually removed from WJunction but there was clearly some kind of falling out. Shortly after WDF’s departure around 12 months ago internal leaks of information from WJunction were published on the web, ostensibly from some kind of third party hack.

warezUploaderTalk reported on these leaks regularly including the November 2012 revelations by Robert King of the StopFileLockers anti-piracy campaign which claimed to contain the identities of WJunction’s owners and backers.

UT, as UploaderTalk became known, was never destined to challenge WJunction as the leading site of its kind. However, in addition to its regular readers, over the past 12 months the site gathered nearly 1,000 fully signed up members of the uploading and file-hosting community. For them today’s announcement will be an unpleasant one.

“UT is now closed. UT was set up for a number of reasons. But mostly to be a sounding board, proof of concept.[.].and to collect data,” WDF said in a statement today.

“That’s right the biggest swerve ever. I, WDF, work for the anti-piracy people! I have collected information on many of you. I collected info on file hosts, web hosts, websites.”

The official announcement from WDF confirmed what many people have suspected for some time – that WDF had been playing on both sides of the fence.

“How is it I was able to protect some sites and people? Because I was working for the other side!” WDF said.

“How is it I knew so many things? Well think about it, I suckered shitloads of you. I built a history, got the trust of some very important people in the warez scene collecting information and data all the time.”

It’s unclear what WDF intends to do with the information obtained so far but for now it has to be presumed that he will be sharing it with his new employer, NukePiracy LLC, a company registered on October 2013 in Nashville, Tennessee.

“So what happens now? I am already working with a different ID, a new persona, and still collecting data. You never know who I will be or where I will turn up. I work for Nuke Piracy now, this is very bad for anyone profiting from piracy,” WDF concludes.

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Posted by plates55 - October 24, 2013 at 1:03 pm

Categories: Piracy   Tags: , , , , , , ,

Pirate Bay’s Anti-Censorship Browser Clocks 1,000,000 Downloads

The Pirate Bay’s PirateBrowser, a tool that allows people to bypass ISP filtering and access blocked websites, is a great success. The Firefox and Tor-based software eliminates the need to use a proxy site and has already been downloaded more than 1,000,000 times, TorrentFreak has learned. Currently around 0.5% of all Pirate Bay visitors use PirateBrowser to access the infamous torrent site

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Posted by plates55 - October 20, 2013 at 1:52 pm

Categories: Pirate Bay   Tags: , , , , , , ,

Piracy Isn’t Killing The Entertainment Industry, Scholars Show

The London School of Economics and Political Science has released a new policy brief urging the UK Government to look beyond the lobbying efforts of the entertainment industry when it comes to future copyright policy. According to the report there is ample evidence that file-sharing is helping, rather than hurting the creative industries. The scholars call on the Government to look at more objective data when deciding on future copyright enforcement policies.

lbeOver the past years there have been ample research reports showing that file-sharing can have positive effects on the entertainment industries.

Industry lobbyists are often quick to dismiss these findings as incidents or weak research, and counter them with expensive studies they have commissioned themselves.

The London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) jumps into the discussion this week with a media policy brief urging the UK Government to look beyond the reports lobbyists hand to them. Their report concludes that the entertainment industry isn’t devastated by piracy, and that sharing of culture has several benefits.

“Contrary to the industry claims, the music industry is not in terminal decline, but still holding ground and showing healthy profits. Revenues from digital sales, subscription services, streaming and live performances compensate for the decline in revenues from the sale of CDs or records,” says Bart Cammaerts, LSE Senior Lecturer and one of the report’s authors.

The report shows that the entertainment industries are actually doing quite well. The digital gaming industry is thriving, the publishing sector is stable, and the U.S. film industry is breaking record after record.

“Despite the Motion Picture Association of America’s (MPAA) claim that online piracy is devastating the movie industry, Hollywood achieved record-breaking global box office revenues of $35 billion in 2012, a 6% increase over 2011,” the report reads.

Even the music industry is doing relatively well. Revenue from concerts, publishing and digital sales has increased significantly since the early 2000s and while recorded music revenues show a decline, there is little evidence that piracy is the lead cause.

“The music industry may be stagnating, but the drastic decline in revenues warned of by the lobby associations of record labels is not in evidence,” the report concludes.

Music industry revenue

musicgraph

 

The authors further argue that file-sharing can actually benefit the creative industries in various ways.

The report mentions the success of the SoundCloud service where artists can share their work for free through Creative Commons licenses, the promotional effect of YouTube where copyrighted songs are shared to promote sales, and the fact that research shows that file-sharers actually spend more money on entertainment than those who don’t share.

“Within the creative industries there is a variety of views on the best way to benefit from online sharing practices, and how to innovate to generate revenue streams in ways that do not fit within the existing copyright enforcement regime,” the authors write.

Finally, the report shows that punitive enforcement strategies such as the three strikes law in France are not as effective as the entertainment industries claim.

The researchers hope that the U.K. Government will review the Digital Economy Act in this light, and make sure that it will take into account the interests of both the public and copyright holders.

This means expanding fair use and private copying exceptions for citizens, while targeting enforcement on businesses rather than individuals.

“We recommend a review of the DEA and related legislation that strikes a healthy balance among the interests of a range of stakeholders including those in the creative industries, Internet Service Providers and internet users.”

“When both [the creative industries and citizens] can exploit the full potential of the internet, this will maximize innovative content creation for the benefit of all stakeholders,” the authors write.

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Posted by plates55 - October 3, 2013 at 12:59 pm

Categories: Piracy   Tags: , , , , , , ,

The top 29 torrent sites (that is right…29)

I use the following  for my client I prefer utorrent 2.2.1

For the sites I only use two.   Two that I have been on for over 5 years probably more like 8-10.

Anyway   1)  BITSOUP

2) Torrentleech is my other.

3)  I also have a search site that I like to use to obtain hard to find items

 

29. BTjunkie

January 2012: BTjunkie has voluntarily shut down its operations. BTjunkie was a solid torrent service for reasons of its massive database, its email updates of new additions, its Twitter updates and useful reporting and comment features. Many users will miss having this website. RIP, BTjunkie!

28. Torrent Cafe

This young new private site needs users, but About.com readers already like the service.  The interface is not as clean as some of its competition, but the seed-to-leech ratios are excellent right now.  Sign up and give Torrent Café a try… let us know what you think of it.

27. Torrents.to

This site has a Tonga country domain name, but certainly offers plentiful metasearching of movies and music in English and Spanish. There are some popup advertisements that are annoying, but perhaps you might like the framed interface for searching other torrent sites.

26. The Blues Brothers

Blues Brothers is a private site with a strong community and file-sharing ethic. As a private site, you can expect the leeching (selfish) users to be reduced. The BB community also strives to police itself by carefully watching each member’s upload ratio… if you abuse your ratio, you are blocked from downloading until you donate. This policy may seem a bit harsh, but members seem to really appreciate it.

25. Torrent Pond

Torrentpond.com has been recommended by several users.  As a meta-searcher, Torrentpond will scour other sites for you, atempt to filter out old and fake torrents, and then offer you an easy-to-browse list.  It also showcases recent torrents, which is a good feature for regular downloaders. The advertising is plentiful, and you will need to tune it out and go around some popups, but the thorough searches are often worth it.

24. Cinema Torrents

CinemaTorrents.com offers something really unique: IMDB ratings and vote information right on the search page. You can see public opinions on the movie itself before you download.

23. BitToxic.com

While the name is awkward to type, these folks offer a solid semi-private search site. The memberships might be closed soon, so visit them right away!

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22. Meganova/SeedPeer

Meganova, which has been rebranded as “SeedPeer”, seems to be slow to load these days. Nevertheless, readers have commented that they like this site. New visitors should note the “keyword cloud” wall of text on the home page (this cloud gives you a quick sense of what are popular search phrases lately).

21. The Pirate Bay

Back in April 18, 2009: the Stockholm district court sentenced the four Pirate Bay founders to a year in prison, and over $USD 3.5 million in fines. This is as punishment for violating their country’s copyright laws. (More on this shocking court ruling here).  Since then, TPB has come back with a revised format hosted in a different country.  TPB is a resilient fixture in the P2P world, and loyal users continue to support this excellent site.

20. ExtraTorrent

ExtraTorrent is a crammed-looking site, and yes, it has popup advertising that can be annoying. BUT: this cluttered site also offers some really packed information that many users will appreciate:  the torrents have movie plot summaries, photos of the actors, user comments on the stories, names of the users who verified the torrent, and visual crosslinks to similar movies.  I personally like that ExtraTorrents features some really obscure gems in the left column… a very helpful feature for real movie and TV buffs looking to discover new shows.

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19. yourbittorrent.com

This site is simple and clean, with almost no advertising.  The results are fast, easy to scan, and plentiful.  You have to love a simple and straightforward service that delivers convenient and quick results… like yourbittorent.com delivers for downloaders.

18. IPtorrents

IPtorrents is an exclusive torrent site that accepts only people who are personally invited by existing members. Members who invite leechers (“cheaters”) are banned from the site, which promotes a careful loyalty amongst its members.

17. Torrent Tree

Gary and his team of P2P programmers bring us a new site in Ajax code language. Like any metasearch engine, Torrent Tree pulls its results from many other search engines. But Torrent Tree pulls *more* search results than any other current metasearch site. Definitely give these new players a try.

16. BiteNova

Formerly known as “Bi-Torrents”, BiteNova is a free Torrent site with a spartan look and fast searching format.

15. Fenopy

Fenopy has some compelling features. Fenopy is fully integrated with IMDB and Last.fm radio, so it has some friendly methods for browsing and discovering movies and music. A graphics gallery of large and motivating thumbnails adorns the home page, and the fake finder feature is also very useful for avoiding bad files. Definitely give Fenopy a try.

14. Torrentz

Special thanks to reader, Jonathan R., for this recommendation. The “verified” filtering feature of this site makes it a good choice for downloaders.

13. Linux Tracker

User mcangeli has recommended this linux-focused site.  Linuxtracker.org offers more linux and OSS torrents than nearly all of its current competition. If you are a linux and open source software fan, give Linuxtracker.org a try.

. ShareReactor

ShareReactor is a search engine for both bit torrents and eDonkey 2000 (“ed2k”) file formats. While eDonkey is not nearly as popular today as it was in 2002, some people still use ed2k networking.

11. TorrentZap

TorrentZap is not as large of a catalog as other torrent search engines. And, as with all sites, you need to endure advertising to keep it a no-cost service. But the interface is clean, bright, and easy to navigate.  Try this site out, skip past the ‘external search results’ to find the real torrents at TorrentZap, and let us know what you think.

10. Torrentbit

Torrentbit.nl is the same as Torrentbit.net.  This site is another plain-looking interface that delivers very good selections and surprisingly useful service.  Serious P2P users will like that you can search for torrent hashes and torrent trackers here. There is even an RTS (real time status) feature that lets you check for current seed count with a single click.  Definitely try Torrentbit and let us know how you like this site.

9. Plentyoftorrents

PoT is a kind of launchpad search engine that offers choices where you want to search. Multiple users have recommended Plentyoftorrents this summer; let us know what you think of this site.

8. VCDQ

VCDQ.com is technically not a torrent site… rather, it is a verification site that employs a committee of serious users to confirm torrents. Ideal for movie fans who are seeking new releases, VCDQ.com will indeed tell you if legitimate torrent files have been found and verified for that particular movie. You just need to copy the torrent names and paste them into a torrent search engine like Isohunt.com to locate the seeds. Definitely give VCDQ.com a try; this is a great resource for avoiding fake torrent files and finding true files faster.

7. Nowtorrents.com

Now Torrents (allegedly) offers a special service: it filters out fake/dead torrents in real time. It also offers date-range searching, so you can search for specific years of content (e.g. Flight of the Conchords, 2008).  This makes Nowtorrents very useful if you are seeking obscure older torrents, or if you are seeking very new torrents.

6. Bitsoup

Bitsoup is a favorite with some P2P downloaders, but this summer 2010 has not been a warm time at the Bitsoup community. There are allegations of draconian forum moderation and heavy-handed administrators being abusive to members. If you try Bitsoup, let us know how they treat you there.

5. LinuxTracker.org

Linux users: rejoice! Here is a niche site for your niche tastes in software! Get legal Linux/Unix files, applications, virtual machines, and more.

4. Gpirate.com

GPirate claims to be the largest torrent search engine today. It does have an amateurish look and feel to its interface, but it does yield large result sets. Give GPirate a try, and let us know if you like the service.

3. Thunderbytes

Thunderbytes has gone to a membership-only private format. There are many pros and cons to private sites; oftentimes, they are the best way to get help and recommendations from others. You need an invitation to join TB, or you can become a sponsor with a small donation. Give these folks a try, as they come highly recommended as a P2P site.

2. btscene.com

btscene is a longtime player in the file sharing game. This website does have annoying popups and adult advertising, but it does offer a solid library of torrents. It does a good job of featuring very recent torrents (good for people who follow television shows), and presenting many browsing choices at a glance.

1. Torrenthound.com

 

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Posted by plates55 - September 8, 2012 at 6:28 pm

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uTorrent & BitTorrent Surge to 150 Million Monthly Users

uTorrent parent company BitTorrent Inc. just announced that the BitTorrent Mainline client and uTorrent have hit the milestone of 150 million monthly users. Together both clients increased their user base by more than 50 percent compared to last year, and the end of this surge is not yet in sight.

bittorrentWith millions of people using BitTorrent every day, the protocol has been the leading P2P technology from more than half a decade.

Despite massive competition from cyberlockers, BitTorrent continues to expand year after year, and not just by a little. Today, BitTorrent Inc. announced that their two flagship clients increased their user base by 50 percent, to more than 150 million active users a month.

Most growth can be attributed to uTorrent, which more than quadrupled its number of monthly users in the last three years. The ‘tiny’ BitTorrent client went from 28 million monthly users in December 2008  to 132 million last month.

“This marks an amazing milestone for our company and we want to thank our loyal users and partners for their support. Our protocol and software clients have become some of the most pervasive pieces of technology in Internet history,” says BitTorrent Inc. CEO Eric Klinker.

“We look forward to another exciting year of growth and we continue expanding our product lines to meet the needs of consumers creating and consuming high-quality personal media files on a broad range of consumer electronics devices,” he adds.

The last comment ties in to a slew of other announcements released by BitTorrent today.  The company is currently showcasing several “BitTorrent Certified” devices at CES, the world’s largest consumer electronics tradeshow  in Las Vegas. Through these partnerships BitTorrent hopes to add an extra revenue stream, and widen its user base beyond the traditional computer.

Aside from showing off BitTorrent-enabled routers, TVs and network storage devices, BitTorrent will also launch the world’s first certified set-top box developed by the Slovakian company Antik. The set-top-box allows users to search, download and play torrent files directly on their TV.

The advantage of the  BitTorrent Certified ecosystem is that it simplifies the downloading process for less tech-savvy people. Right now, many people drop out after installing a BitTorrent client because they find it too complicated to download and play content.

Whether these devices will be a success is yet to be seen, but there is certainly a large enough user base to tap into.

Based on the 150 million active monthly users BitTorrent Inc. reports for their clients, the total number of monthly BitTorrent users can be estimated at more than a quarter billion. And despite these already dazzling numbers, there is still plenty of room for growth.

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Posted by plates55 - January 10, 2012 at 12:24 pm

Categories: Bittorrent   Tags: , , , , , , ,

I Know What You Downloaded on BitTorrent….

Most people know that BitTorrent is far from anonymous, but seeing all your recent downloads listed on a public website is still quite a revelation. This is exactly what Youhavedownloaded.com does. The developers of the site want to make people aware of the public nature of BitTorrent, and are currently working on a more anonymous version of the leading file-sharing technology.

So what have you downloaded lately?

If you’re not using BitTorrent through a proxy or VPN, there’s a good chance that the rest of the world can see without asking.

YouHaveDownloaded is a new Russian-based service that claims to track about 20 percent of all public BitTorrent downloads. However, they go a step further than just collecting IP-addresses and file-names by exposing all the harvested information to the public on their website.

People who visit the site immediately see their download history, as far as it’s available in the site’s database. In addition, they can also search for files or IP-addresses to find out who’s downloading what. At the time of writing the database has information on  51,274,000 users who together shared 103,200 torrents.

 

TorrentFreak got in touch with Suren Ter, one of the site’s founders, to find out why they decided to create this spying tool.

“We just want to remind people that the Internet is not a place to expect privacy,” he says. “Nowadays many people use it without understanding what information they leave behind. Also, even those who understand choose to ignore it quite often.”

 

torrent
 

The Russian developers created the site partly as a wake-up call. Those who don’t want this kind of information to be public should take steps to anonymize their traffic, and do that right. This message is also reflected in the site’s ‘privacy policy‘.

“Baby, this is the Internet. There is no such thing as privacy around here. You are sitting in the privacy of your own house, clicking links, reading stuff, watching movies. It may seem like you are pretty much alone, but smart nerds are watching you. They watch your every move. You are not human to them. You are a target — a consumer,” it reads.

Jokes aside, the site does indeed make people aware of the public nature of BitTorrent, something that can’t be stressed enough. Of course not everyone will be happy to see that their information is being exposed, so the developers also offer an option to de-list an IP-address.

Apart from exposing download habits the developers are also considering the creation of a more private file-sharing protocol. They already have a theoretical concept based on Bitcoin’s technology, but a workable piece of software is still very far away.

“The general idea is similar to what Bitcoin does. The key is to have an anonymous and reliable identity for each peer, and a Bitcoin-like signature chain algorithm will help,” Suren said.

The developers are currently trying to find out how viable their idea is, and then they’ll decide whether they should continue working on it or not. For now, they’ll keep on tracking dozens of millions of downloaders, for all the world to see.

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Posted by plates55 - December 10, 2011 at 11:50 am

Categories: Bittorrent   Tags: , , , , , , ,

RIAA: Piracy is “Under Control” But Wait – “Rampant Theft” Continues

Make no mistake, anti-piracy organizations have a thin line to tread. On the one hand they have to show their efforts yield results, and on the other that the piracy situation is so bad that they are needed more than ever. From two different mouths the RIAA has been doing that just this week but it’s hard to accept that either approach yields results without being counter-productive.

download a carSome people believe that anti-piracy groups do a hateful and cynical job, and achieve little other than negative publicity.

Others maintain that they are absolutely necessary to protect the livelihoods of the world’s creative industries, and without them the world would be a worse place.

Whatever the belief held, proponents and opponents alike are nevertheless intrigued by what happens behind the closed doors of anti-piracy groups, particularly when viewed through the prism of their press announcements.

Just this week Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) Chairman & CEO Cary Sherman commented on the White House launch of a new awareness campaign along with PSAs designed to alert the US public to the apparent perils of piracy.

“As a community still plagued by the rampant theft of our work, we have seen firsthand the devastating effects this theft can have on the lives of hard-working, passionate musicians, songwriters, producers and countless others,” said Sherman.

While the RIAA’s support of this type of campaign is nothing new, the last decade witnessed a much more controversial way of spreading the anti-piracy message – massive legal action which saw the music group settle with thousands of individuals for millions of dollars and sue a few unfortunate souls to within an inch of their lives for millions of dollars each.

As the RIAA previously told TorrentFreak, that legal campaign was designed to attract attention after PSAs previously run by the group were shown to make “little difference”. But there are also other techniques available to the RIAA to tip the market in their favor.

During November, Tennessean.com ran an article titled Music Row spent $4 million on lobbying in 3 months in which they state that the industry’s focus on lobbying “comes after the music industry’s use of a tactic, now almost universally acknowledged as a failure, in which it filed lawsuits against individuals accused of illegally downloading songs to stop piracy.”

So a failure then? Absolutely not, says the RIAA in a just-published response.

“Our legal efforts served as an essential educational tool: Fans know far more now about copyright laws and the legal consequences of stealing music than ever before. Before initiating lawsuits in 2003, only 35 percent of people knew file-sharing on P2P was illegal; afterward, awareness grew to 70 percent,” writes RIAA Director of Communications Liz Kennedy.

“Where there was virtually no legal digital market before the lawsuits, today the market exceeds $3 billion annually, and revenue from online platforms will comprise more than 50 percent of total industry revenues this year,” she continues adding that doing nothing would have meant illegal downloading would have “skyrocketed further”.

The RIAA’s conclusion is shown in the title of the piece – RIAA largely succeeds in goal of bringing piracy under control – but that seems scarcely compatible with Sherman’s comments that the industry is being subjected to rampant theft, unless “controlled rampant theft” is something the RIAA associates with a successful outcome to an anti-piracy campaign.

While Sherman may be offering support to the new PSA’s issued by the government, it’s clear that from previous comments the RIAA have little faith in them. The sue-em-all campaign certainly raised awareness, but it hasn’t negated the need for millions to be spent on lobbying, most recently in support of PROTECT IP and SOPA.

And here’s the thing. There are few people outside the music industry (maybe even inside) who think that suing customers turned out to be a particularly clever thing to do. Similar numbers are supportive of the industry’s championing of SOPA. All of this only adds credibility to the arguments of those who say that anti-piracy groups do a hateful and cynical job, and achieve little else other than generate negativity.

Worryingly, this is a view widely held by the ‘Internet Generation’ who are the ones expected to forget the past and utilize RIAA-sanctioned music services in the future. The cry of F*** THE RIAA didn’t exist before the lawsuits and it will take a long time to forget – support of draconian SOPA-style legislation only succeeds in prolonging the memories.

Of course, the RIAA will always justify their worth, characterizing questionable former campaigns as a success but noting that there is a new crisis in the piracy war that means they’re needed more than ever before.

However, all is not lost, because the RIAA already have the solution. I’ll leave you with Liz Kennedy’s words from The Tennessean which show that rather than throwing millions at lawyers and lobbying, maybe the RIAA should spend some time getting advice from Valve and Steam, and learning how influencing the public is really done.

“To be clear, no legal efforts are a panacea,” says Kennedy, “compelling legal consumption options are the most important.”

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Posted by plates55 - December 5, 2011 at 8:08 pm

Categories: Piracy, RIAA   Tags: , , , , , , ,

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