Warner Brothers Hiring Anti-Piracy Interns To Spy On Pirates

What better way to find pirates than to hire students who are proficient in file sharing. Warner Brothers is recruiting students as interns to locate and spy on pirates in an attempt to shut down their operations. It seems that these interns will be setting up accounts at BitTorrent sites, develop scanning bots, make purchases to trap sellers and other tasks as Warner Brothers deems necessary. This is an effort to locate pirates and prosecute them for piracy.

In a recent article it further states that:

The intern will further have to scour the Internet for illegally posted Warner Bros. and NBC Universal content and gather intelligence on the sites that offer these pirated goods. One of the more boring tasks listed in the job description is the sending of takedown requests and infringement notices to sites and users.

The lucky student who gets the job will receive a £17,500 salary for the 12 month internship that starts July 2010. Applicants are required to study a degree in a computing related discipline and programming experience with Java or JSP and PHP, Perl or Python is seen as a bonus.

We encourage all eligible TorrentFreak readers to apply for this exciting internship and provide us with regular updates on Warner Bros’ anti-piracy efforts. You have to be quick though, the vacancy closes on March 31.

If this is successful one would expect that other movie studios may follow Warner Brothers lead. It would seem that Warner Brothers is serious about catching those who pirate their movies and sell them to others. It will be interesting to see how well these interns do and if the effort does stem the flow of illegal movies being sold on the Internet.

Comments welcome.

Source

Here’s Five Ways To Stream A Torrent

There should be an image here!One would not think that streaming a torrent was all that doable. At least not without some work involved. Well as it turns out, this top five ways to stream your torrents list looks fairly obtainable.

Some of the easiest to use, appear to be those options provided for in browser use. There are some other killer clients to be tried of course, but I found that the in-browser solutions tend to be the most duplicatable.

Comments seen at the original article also listed some pretty worthwhile options, but I found that the cream of the crop to be listed with the link above. Seriously, who is going to out perform Put.io? Anyone, anyone at all?

Will Anonymous BitTorrent Users Be Able To Hide?

New services are being designed in an attempt to hide the identity of BitTorrent users and others who share files. In an age when copyrighted materials are being shared openly, and when governmental and other associations are monitoring the sites, file sharing services are looking at a way to hide the IP addresses of those who share. But will anonymous users be able to hide and not get caught?

According to an article at TorrentFreak it states:

The UK government has high hopes for the piracy warnings Internet providers will be required to send to copyright infringing customers. The warnings are designed to scare users away from illicit file-sharing, but when we asked our readers what action they would take upon receiving a warning letter from their ISP, many were unmovable. A massive 41% indicated that they would take steps to conceal their identity, while only 7% of our readers said they would obey the warning and stop sharing.

The results of the survey clearly showed that avid file-sharers would rather hide their identities than stop downloading. And indeed, more and more BitTorrent users are seeking ways to protect their privacy online, rendering all the newly proposed anti-piracy laws useless.

TorrentPrivacy, BitBlinder and The Pirate Bay’s Ipredator are just a few examples of services launched in the past year, targeted at concerned BitTorrent users. The goal of these and other anonymity applications is clear; hide the IP-address of the file-sharer so he can’t be tracked down while swapping files.

Currently in beta, The Pirate Bay’s Ipredator uses the same tech platform as the VPN service Relakks. For a few dollars a month it routes all your traffic through its servers, hiding your IP address. Ipredator is currently limited to 3000 users but according to the Pirate Bay team there are another 180,000 users on the waiting list, eager to join.

Running a VPN network for hundreds of thousands of hungry BitTorrent users will prove to be quite a challenge. The infrastructure and bandwidth required by a service targeted at file-sharers is significant, not to mention costly. This undoubtedly leads to problems.

The aforementioned Relakks saw its subscriptions double in just a month when the controversial Ipred law came into effect in Sweden this April. This surge in subscriptions led to to major problems with support and updates according to Relakks’s chairman Jan Erik Fiske.

So it seems that the cat and mouse game will continue. Which makes me wonder. Will this type of anonymous file sharing programs really work? Or will the government and other associations be able to crack them?

What do you think?

Comments welcome.

Source.

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eGreetings!

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What exactly are torrents — and are they legal?

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What Are Torrents, And Are They Legal?

Q: How do ‘torrents’ work and why are they illegal? Are there any Web sites that you can download music, videos, movies, and other stuff for free? — Juan

Torrents are just another way to engage in file sharing on the Internet that’s technically more efficient (and complicated) than traditional Peer-to-Peer (P2P) networks like KaZaa or LimeWire.

Torrents are actually small control files with the information needed to know where to get a desired file from multiple sources at the same time. With these instructions, it can download chunks of a larger file from multiple users simultaneously (and even out of sequence), and then reassemble the chunks in the proper order on your computer.

This approach is more complicated to set up, but the techie community prefers its speed and elusiveness to other P2P networks. The two stage process pulling from multiple computers makes it nearly impossible to shut down.

Torrents are not illegal, just as guns are not illegal. It’s what’s done with the tool that CAN be illegal. If you use torrents to download copyrighted material such as songs, movies, or software programs, then your actions are illegal — not the use of torrents.

Frankly, the majority of activity in the torrent networks is for illegally downloading copyrighted content: first run movies, pirated software, music from commercial artists, etc.

Torrents can be very useful in moving large quantities of data around many computers across the Internet, but using it to get something for ‘free’ that you would normally have to pay for is when you have crossed the line.

Another concern when downloading files from the torrent networks is contracting various malware from files that are posing as popular content or have hidden Trojans (especially in software program downloads) that can sneak malicious code into your computer while you are running or installing the material.

There are lots of Web sites that offer free downloads that are entirely legal, but you probably won’t want what you can get for free because it won’t be the big name artists, movies, or videos.

If you don’t have to actually download the content, there are lots of ways to listen to and view copyrighted material for free without breaking the law.

Pandora and Last.fm are two very popular sites that allow you to listen to the vast majority of commercial artists and even create your own radio stations based on your tastes.

YouTube has a ‘movie’ channel that allows you to watch free movies — mostly independent films and older commercial movies that weren’t major hits.

A host of other free online media sites have cropped up including Hulu, Veoh, FanCast, and Joost that allow viewing of many popular TV shows as well as music videos and movies (but not any current movies).

These sites monetize the content by using the traditional display ads as well as the commercial insertion method that they require you to watch in order to get to your desired video content. Some TV content actually breaks up the viewing with commercial insertions just like television broadcasts.

The traditional media world is continuing to transition into the digital age, so you will continue to see more and more content become available in either commercial web settings or cheaper pay per view or download services like the very popular iTunes Store.

WARNING: Many Web sites and ads that you encounter in either search results or banner ads will proclaim that you can download movies and music for free. If the content they are offering is first run movies or brand new music that you can freely download, consider it illegal or a scam.

Malicious software programmers know that they can infect people that are not paying attention and this is one of the most common ways to get your computer infected, so be vigilant when searching for free content!

Ken Colburn
Data Doctors Computer Services
Data Doctors Data Recovery Labs
Data Doctors Franchise Systems, Inc.
Weekly video tech contributor to CNN.com
Host of the award-winning “Computer Corner” radio show

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The BBC Is Going BTTorrent

While here in the US, the morons in the various media industries continue to demonize anything using Bittorrent as clearly illegal, overseas we are watching the BBC getting ready to launch their own Bittorrent content. Looks like they are starting with a Creative Commons licensed tech show.

The initial episode will feature the ever-trendy, Kevin Rose, of Digg.com fame. Apparently the idea is to begin exploring distributing content in such a way as to reduce the costs it would normally take to get it out to people.

This is not to say that people would not still watch in on TV per se, but something tells me if they are looking to attract the younger, online crowd, going with Bittorrent is a darn good place to start off from. Am I right or wrong on this one?

Torrent2Exe v0.9

Convert your torrents into stand-alone exe files with Torrent2Exe. Just enter a link or a path to a torrent file and obtain an executable file that will automatically download your torrent. No BitTorrent client is needed. You can publish exe files on your site or blog to make the downloads easy for visitors, send exe files to your friends who don’t want to be bothered with installing the client, or else add extra functionality to your torrent-related site.

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New Software Allows ISPs And P2P Users To Get Along Without Getting Too Cozy

Peer-to-peer (P2P) file-sharing services, which connect individual users for simultaneous uploads and downloads directly rather than through a central server, are reported to account for as much as 70 percent of Internet traffic worldwide. That level of use has led to a growing tension between Internet Service Providers (ISPs) and their customers’ P2P file-sharing services, and has driven service providers to forcefully reduce P2P traffic at the expense of unhappy subscribers and the risk of government investigations.

Now researchers at Northwestern University’s McCormick School of Engineering and Applied Science have discovered a way to ease that tension: Ono, a unique software solution that allows users to efficiently identify nearby P2P clients. The software, which is freely available and has been downloaded by more than 150,000 users, benefits ISPs by reducing costly cross-network traffic without sacrificing performance for the user. In fact, when ISPs configure their networks properly, their software significantly improves transfer speeds — by as much as 207 percent on average.

Ono, developed by Fabian E. Bustamante, assistant professor of electrical engineering and computer science, and Ph.D. student David Choffnes, has been deployed for the Azureus BitTorrent P2P file-sharing client.

“Finding nearby computers for transferring data may seem like a simple thing to do,” says Choffnes, “but the problem is that the Internet doesn’t have a Google Map. Every computer may have an address, but it doesn’t tell you whether the machine is close to you.”

Worse yet, the simplest solution to finding computers that are close to you requires measuring the distance to every single one — an operation that is too costly and time consuming to be practical.

Instead, Ono — Hawaiian for “delicious” — relies on a clever trick based on observations of Internet companies like Akamai (incidentally Hawaiian for “clever”). Akamai is a content-distribution network (CDN), which offloads data traffic from Web sites onto their proprietary network of more than 10,000 servers worldwide. CDNs such as Akamai and Limelight power some of the most popular Web sites worldwide and enable higher performance for Web clients by sending them to one of those servers within close proximity.

Using the key assumption that two computers sent to the same CDN server are likely close to each other, Ono allows P2P users to quickly identify nearby users.

Ono is different from other software applications that address the conflict between ISPs and P2P traffic (see, for example, the recently announced partnership between Verizon and P4P) because it requires no cooperation or trust between ISPs and P2P users. Ono is also open source and does not demand the deployment of additional infrastructure. Bustamante’s Aqualab research group has made Ono publicly available since March 2007 and recently published code that makes it easy to incorporate Ono services into other applications.

“The more users we have, the better the system works, so we’re just trying make it easy to spread,” says Bustamante.

Ono (and other related source code) is available at the Aqualab Web site.

Bustamante’s research was supported by the National Science Foundation.

[Kyle Delaney @ Northwestern University]

Hulu

I’ve always been a fan of television shows over movies, and there are certain series that I just can’t get enough of. Don’t get me wrong, I do enjoy movies, but I’m much more likely to watch a television show if I have the choice. I’ve purchased a collection of television show seasons on DVD over the years, but now that online video has become so popular, it’s easy for anyone to watch full episodes or clips of their favorite shows on the Internet. The problem is that many times these videos are uploaded and shared illegally, but instead of just complaining about the issue, some content providers are stepping up to the plate to offer legal solutions. One of these solutions is Hulu, and now that it’s available to the public, the time has come to watch some video, my friends.

If you’ve ever felt guilty while watching copyrighted content on YouTube or downloading it via BitTorrent, then Hulu is for you. It may not have everything, but you’ll find plenty of current and classic television shows and movies that can be viewed in their entirety at any time, and all you’ll have to deal with are some short ads. The quality is great, and you can even view the videos full-screen if you would like to get the full experience. Videos can be embedded and shared in any way that you would like, and if you’re not in the mood to watch something in its entirety, then you’ll find plenty of assorted clips from other television shows and movies to keep you happy. Without a doubt, this is one of my new favorite Web sites.

FCC vs Comcast – Comments Welcome

It appears that the FCC is going to be looking into allegations that Comcast has been throttling back speeds for certain users who use sites such as BitTorrent. Comcast has been playing the part as ‘nanny’ in controlling how much users are able to download. The FCC is interested in your opinion about this practice and you can send an electronic comment at the link below.

If you are a Comcast customer this is your chance to be heard. Even if you are not a Comcast customer you may wish to comment before your ISP follows the policy that it appears that Comcast may be using.

What do you think? Should ISP’s be allowed to manage the speed of what we download?

Comments welcome.

FCC electronic comment is found here.

[tags] fcc, comcast, download, speed, bittorrent, file, sharing, comments, electronic, [/tags]

Torrential Comcast Conspiracies

Stephanie (AKA Script) is also having issues with Comcast:

In reference to your Ustream video about Comcast. I too am an unfortunate Comcast subscriber. I was wondering are you using Comcast home or business service? The reason I am asking is that I have a feeling that those of us who use home service are going to be pretty much forced to buy the business service in order to maintain the downloading speeds that we are used to. It’s just a hunch but I have noticed an increasingly high number of Comcast business TV ads lately with the promise of 12Mbps download speed. I am curious about your take on this. Because I think the motivation behind flagging certain users is driven by some monetary gain not because they want to necessarily care about the spread of torrents.

Well, I certainly wouldn’t recommend running a business on any kind of connection that Comcast provides! No way. I recently “upgraded” my residential plan to business merely because I could attain a marginally better upload rate. Comcast didn’t force me to make that decision.

However, it’s still mistreating many of its customers.

I download Torrents from legitimate sites, especially a lot of FLACs, and I also distribute FLACs from myself and other indie artists who allow their music to be shared. This indiscriminate profiling of users based on a filetype or protocol they use is tantamount to racial profiling (something I know a bit about) and it really angers me. Anyway I’d be interested to hear your thoughts on the possibility that Comcast might be doing this for monetary gain.

Oh, but… Comcast hasn’t admitted to any wrongdoing on its part. This is its service, and it can do with it what it wishes – but when it doesn’t tell customers what’s going on, we get a little pissy.

Because of politics and payoffs, you’re stuck with what you’ve got. This is not a system ruled by free enterprise. It’s all about control — and Comcast is pushing a drug that you simply cannot shake. It’s getting to be the only dealer in town. Qwest is just as bad around here; I’d move to FIOS in a heartbeat, but because of the same anti-competitive, anti-consumer regulations… I can’t get Verizon’s service in my area.

[tags]bittorrent, comcast[/tags]

Is BitTorrent Blocked By Your ISP?

It’s true that there are instances in which BitTorrent is being blocked by a number of ISPs. Unfortunately, BitTorrent is not alway used with nefarious intentions. More often than not it is simply an alternative way to download a legitimate file such as a podcast or other forms of media rich content. So now we have to ask, how can one know if their ISP is blocking the user’s ability to download BitTorrent distributed content?

Thanks to a recent entry on Monkey Bites, we have been provided with a very helpful chart that details a number of ISPs that do indeed, over step their bounds (in my opinion).

What I found most interesting was the lack of Comcast being listed. Actually, scratch “interesting”. I think I would go with elated instead. I am so happy to see that my ISP has decided not to screw with my data traffic in such a way as to limit my productivity.

So what do you think? Email me at [email protected]. Note that, by clicking on that link, the subject defaults to “feedback.” Changing this subject will cause POPFile to quarantine your message and I will never see it – so please don’t!

[tags]BitTorrent,ISP,Comcast[/tags]

Windows Vista and BitTorrent

Some of you likely caught the news elsewhere, as it’s been pretty hot for the past couple of days. Jake and I set up a BitTorrent tracker for the official release of Microsoft Windows Vista Beta 2. This is a public build of the software, and you still must obtain a key from Microsoft to complete the installation of the OS.

Per the official report, Microsoft is currently recommending waiting for a DVD version of Windows Vista Beta 2 due to extremely long wait times for the download directly from Microsoft. To help them with their dilemma, we’ve downloaded the official beta release and created a Vista Torrent.

The only official tracker for this torrent is found at VistaTorrent.com. We’re providing an MD5 hash to verify the file after download to make sure you’re getting the real thing. If the torrent URL is anything other than the one from Vistatorrent.com, don’t download or install the file! We’re staking our reputations on providing a clean ISO torrent here. There is no registration required to download this torrent. This is not a crack, this is not a hack, this is not software piracy – it’s unofficial mirroring with official validation. You can get a Windows Vista Beta 2 product key for free through Microsoft, as the OS won’t install without one.

Microsoft hasn’t taken us offline yet, but that isn’t necessarily an endorsement. You might note their official statement on the VistaTorrent.com site: “We are excited by the high demand for Windows Vista beta 2 code. While we understand people may be looking for faster ways to download it, we continue to encourage anyone interested in receiving the code to visit the [official] web site to obtain a valid product key. Any pirated product keys, obtained from sources other than Microsoft, will be closed down immediately.”
Continue reading “Windows Vista and BitTorrent”

Jamendo

I’m a huge music fan, and I not only enjoy listening to it, but I also have fun playing it, as well. Because of my obsession, I always remain on the lookout for new bands and music that I may have never heard of before. Major label acts aren’t the only game in town – an innumerable amount of talented smaller groups tend to slip through the cracks due to a lack of financial support and a minuscule amount of promotion. The RIAA has made it very hard for us to casually listen to and discover new bands without a financial commitment, but the good news is that a large number of independent musicians are making their music freely available online, and Jamendo will link you to it.
Continue reading “Jamendo”