Internet Archive Enables Over 1,000,000 Torrents Of Books, Music And Movies

from the torrent-away dept

We sometimes hear people say that BitTorrent as a technology is only good for infringement. We know that’s not true, but then people will point to examples of how frequently it’s used for infringement. Of course, that’s meaningless when you look at both the larger picture and the nature of trends. When new distribution technologies are introduced, it’s not surprising that they’re used that way because there’s so little legitimate activity on the system. But that changes over time. Remember, when the VCR first came about, nearly all activity on it was described as “infringing” by some, because there was no legitimate content being offered. However, obviously, over time that changed and more and more legitimate content was offered.

Over the years, we’ve certainly seen an increase in content being offered via BitTorrent, but today there’s a big addition: the Internet Archive has enabled over one million torrents of books, music and movies from its collection.

The Internet Archive is now offering over 1,000,000 torrents including our live music concerts, the Prelinger movie collection, the librivox audio book collection, feature films, old time radio, lots and lots of books, and all new uploads from our patrons into Community collections (with more to follow).

And while some ignorant organizations may declare that the Internet Archive is a “rogue site,” I think most people recognize that it’s a wonderful repository of all sorts of legal content, much of which is now available using the rather efficient distribution technology BitTorrent.

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Companies: bittorrent, internet archive

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Comments on “Internet Archive Enables Over 1,000,000 Torrents Of Books, Music And Movies”

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47 Comments
Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

Actually, Internet Archive is a little late to the party. Bittorrent has been around for, what, over a decade? Pop the champagne! It’s innovation time!

Warner Bros. was experimenting with Bittorrent over six years ago already.

Not to mention Snocap had a digital rights registry and licensing for music on p2p networks ready to go eight years ago, but there was no takers. Talk about a failure of imagination.

But no, it’s cool that you can use a slightly different protocol to download the same content that has been available for free for years. That will show, um, them!

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Why that reply? No-one said that BitTorrent was the issue.

Why that reply? No-one said that BitTorrent was the issue.

Anonymous Coward, Aug 8th, 2012 @ 10:19am

I certainly hope that BitTorrent has been around for at least ten years – I’ve been using it for at least that long. Yes, it was my post to which you replied so pedantically.

The failed attempt at pedantry aside, you’re doing exactly what the copyright mafiaa wants you to do – conflating the medium and the media with copyright infringement. That’s like calling all Fords illegal because a few Fords have copied Ford hubcaps.

The mafiaa tried (and failed) to propagate the same phony conflation with mp3’s fifteen years ago – calling anyone who had electronic music files (mp3, wav, etc) a pirate (go try to tell Apple that iTunes is piracy).

People such as yourself must be capable of better reasoning than that.

I had hoped we were beyond such trivial crap, but since you’re using what I thought was a dead lie to misdirect (whether you did it intentionally or not), I guess not.

So let me say this: using BitTorrent is (and always has been) perfectly legal and the media transferred via BitTorrent (mp3, mp4, FLAC, avi, text or whatever) is also perfectly legal as a format.

The copyright mafiaa’s ONLY gripe over which they can sue (sure, they despise legitimate competition and no doubt tell all kinds of lies to fight it, but they haven’t bought off enough politicians yet to get more bs laws passed so they can sue over competition) is that the content of media might “infringe” (by their definition of the laws that they already bought with your money (been to a movie lately – where do you think some of the huge profits from the outrageous price you paid go?))

The point of the post is that a HUGE flood of new material is now available for them to scrutinize and find any cause they can to shut it all down regardless of the legality of the bulk (a typical hollywood-style hysterical reaction) and thereby use copyright as a way to unfairly fight fair valid competition.

I could write a lot more, but I don’t want to waste the energy further rebutting a pointless post.

Anyone who disagrees may feel free, however, to read this post as often as it takes to get the point(s) through your head(s).

Anonymous Coward says:

not many people are still critical of things like bittorrent, It has always been about the misuse of any technology that is the issue..

a gun can be very usefull if you need to gather food, but if it’s misused then that is the fault of the person misusing the technology, not the underlying technology..

This is a basic precept of existance, and life, you cannot work that out Masnick ???

why continue to proporgate the belief that it’s the technology, not the criminals ?

Loki says:

Re: Re:

I rather think he can work it out given that your statements pretty much sum up the general gist of the arguments of this site for over a decade now.

I am not quite sure how pointing out that it is the entertainment industry that are the ones who keep insisting that it is the technology, not the misuses of such, that are the problem, and then consistently debunking those claims time and again, is somehow propagating the myth.

Anonymous Coward says:

I believe it fair to say that the majority of persons who have expressed concerns associated with torrents have not done so in the context of “torrent technology”. Such “technology” is content neutral. Where concerns have come to the fore is with respect to how some persons have chosen to use and/or exploit the technology, many times in open defiance of the rule of law.

For example, IsoHunt did not get its behind in a sling because it involved torrents, but because the person behind the site deliberately chose to turn a blind eye and deaf ear to what was being done using his site. YouTube at first embarked on this path, but to its credit it has moved in a direction consistent with law. Many of the Cyber Lockers likewise embarked along this path, which is a terrible shame because it unnecesarily gave the technology and all it has to offer a bad name.

Hopefully, as time passes and these technologies come to be used to facilitate legitimate endeavors by their users, these initial perceptions will change.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

I believe it fair to say that the majority of persons who have expressed concerns associated with torrents have not done so in the context of “torrent technology”. Such “technology” is content neutral.

Would be so nice it was true. Content holders have a consistent history of fighting against any alternative distribution and reproduction means they don’t control: banning private copying/archiving technology (eg. DVD backup software, VCR hardware), forcing usage limitations (HDMI, “plugging the analog hole”…), Closing down filesharing sites/services, introducing new taxes (media burners & blank media).

They are the natural enemies of anything bypassing their former control was via mechanical reproduction & distribution. Which is fairly natural a mindset for them considering how long it took so long for the music industry to concentrate into just a handful of majors.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:

How am I missing the point? They are specifically choosing a very controversial way to “distribute” stuff, putting a million files out there that will be used in the next court case to show “non-infringing uses”. It’s a freetard wet dream – which makes me think that one or more of the leading ‘tards got into a position of control and worked it out.

It’s really sad.

it’s not “older generation thinking”, too bad you can’t seem to think. Is that an issue for the “younger generation”, having too short of an attention span to work things out?

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

Cultural preservation and widespread availability is a very important topic. An organisation tasking itself to that is an asset to mankind. People like you usually feel no obligation to contribute to that. All of the thinking is strictly about who’s making money. It’s very hard for them to imagine there’s other dimensions like progress, access to culture,… If we relied on Big Media into ensure things don’t get lost to the future.

On a sidenote, that “freetard”-ing is so retarded. Like something being free is always suspicious. Someone providing something for free must have a hidden motive. I guess it stresses even more what the sole focus of people who spread this language are: strictly money and who gets it. Benefits to society of free circulation of arts, common cultural good, the very natural act of sharing the good stuff with one another, etc, can’t be considered.

On a funny note I can’t help but notice how “freetards” is almost an anagram of “free trades”. You guys are a lot about trade. But nowhere near to freedom.

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

“They are specifically choosing a very controversial way to “distribute” stuff”

It’s only controversial in the minds of morons who are unable to separate the tool from the usage – people who do the equivalent of attacking Ford whenever one of their cars is used in a robbery. In the minds of everybody else, the only question is why they took so long to use such a useful method to distribute their legal content. Perhaps they had to wait because morons keep attacking the tool?

But, I see you firmly fit into the moron camp, so we’re done here.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

Your post presumes nefarious intent on the people putting up and downloading this free (as in $0 and as in freely available/unencumbered) content. That’s the bothersome part. It also presumes the free content is worthless, just as bothersome.

But it also fails to acknowledge facts,… bandwidth is being used to access this content (people are downloading it). So, it has to have some value,… as educational material on industry cooperation with gov’t programs and propaganda (and potentially even as academic material in coursework), or as entertainment (it may be pretty laughable, even if only to people who are sitting in a circle, inhaling vapors from illegal plants). And it also has pure historical value. Given both of those, which are substantial non-infringing uses,… It almost does not matter if it only represents a small fraction of bit torrent use…

It also strikes me as odd that someone would go to such lengths to build up a download history on a thing like this, just to cover illegal use. It is also odd that the academic types who would create these archives would want to support, in any manner, illegal content exchange. I think it more likely they wish to support a useful tool for its original, intended, and lawful purpose.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

What is sick is the amount of speculation and baseless judgment in your post. Name calling, not a single shred of fact (let alone evidence), and heaping piles of your prejudiced opinion.

Archive.Org is a pillar of the internet community. The service the provide (and have provided for a very long time) is of inestimable value to the very high minded goal of preserving human culture. They do this free of charge and without prospect of recompense… as a gift to the world.

What, may I ask do you do for the world that entitles you to look down with scorn upon those noble people. I suspect that the Internet Archive’s Live Grateful Dead Show collection alone is of more use to more people and provides more joy than what any ten negative posters like yourself will accomplish with their entire life’s work.

Dannie blaze (profile) says:

Transformative works sites such as OverClocked Remix (a website that provides fan-created remixes and re-imaginings of video game music) has provided their product for free via torrent for a long, long time now.

And before anyone gets on their high horse about remixes being infringing, OC Remix has a long history of being supported by the gaming industry, several of the sites remixers have gone on to produce music for game developers – such as Lee Brotherton/Bentley Jones hwo has done music for SEGA. And at least one entire game soundtrack (I believe it was one of the MegaMan games) has been produced entirely by OC remix contributors.

Anonymous Coward says:

Archive.org

All of this material has been available for download from them for years and years. The only news here is that they are offering another alternative to the existing direct download links and FTP options.

Really a non-issue. Actual copyright generators are rarely perturbed by so-called infringement anyway… it is always those talentless boobs who use other people’s copyrights to make their money. (And the shills they pay to make a fuss.)

One day, the copyright makers will realize en masse that the people who are robbing them are not the pirates and kids swapping files… but rather the middle men, bloated corporations, and the associations they set up to protect their interests. (not those of the content creators)

anonymouss coward says:

The real problem I should say is the current technology is way ahead of anything content creators can imagine. A writer spends 2 years writing everyday(sometimes more than 2) only to see the finished work in under 5 MB; a music artist, a producer spending millions of dollars on a movies, television; only to be copied and shared by billions for free.

Iam predicting the media industries(books, movies, television, comics,etc) will crash just like 2008 in near future.

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