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Torrents can be really helpful, however, they can also be used for passing of copyrighted material. MP3’s movies, programs, all plague torrent sites. Some with keygens to break the program keys. Others with malware installed to steal data from your computer.
Some say to fight this, Torrents need to be shut down. Others say that controlled torrents are needed for open source documents. It’s a big battle back and forth.
One way to combat is to go after the Torrents themselves. Pirate Bay, for example. However, if a Torrent lives in another country, the legal battle gets harder.
TorrentSpy was a bittorrent indexing service. They showed people where the .torrent files lived. the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) filed a $110 million dollar lawsuit for infringement of files. US District Court Judge Florence-Marie Cooper agreed with the MPAA and Torrentspy was ordered to pay up, along with a perminant injunction on the site.
There is a lot of good that can come from a torrent site. If we could curb the illegal action and make safe areas so you can download copyright free or Creative Commons no-deriv music, movies and documents, the torrent would be better embraced.
There is a lot more on the Week in Tech History – Check out the Podcast!