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06/30 2006 | 05:46 PM
Posted by: Janko Roettgers
Allpeers got a lot of attention when they announced private file sharing for Firefox back in December. Since then it has been kind of quiet around the company - with the notable exception of the well-maintained Allpeers weblog. Now Dmitri Popov has broken the silence and published a review of the service at Newsforge. It's not that detailed, but a few things are still worth mentioning.

Popov says that the first public beta of Allpeers will start in early July, which is just around the corner. He also thinks that there is still some work to be done, but remains optimistic:

"All in all, while there are some kinks in the AllPeers extension that must be sorted out before the public release (most notably, re-installing the extension requires a manual reset of your account at AllPeers' end), the software looks very promising, indeed."

One observation that isn't explicitly mentioned in the review: The screenshot shows options for sharing files, with one of them being "anyone". This might mean that Allpeers offers some public p2p distribution mechanism alongside its private sharing options. Or maybe "anyone" just stands for any of your buddies. So far we can only guess. Anyone?

06/29 2006 | 07:57 PM
Posted by: Janko Roettgers
This just in: Wurld Media announced today that they will offer TV shows and movies from Fox, Warner Bros. and NBC Universal through their gated P2P network Peer Impact. Guess someone finally read their Myspace profile. Now if only those 73 friends would all start to rent their movies via Peer Impact ...

Here's what Techcrunch thinks about this announcement:

"Perhaps most important is the juxtaposition of three major media company names and phrase P2P. That will be great for legitimization of the medium."

06/29 2006 | 02:36 PM
Posted by: Janko Roettgers
Boing Boing reports that some Swedish P2P fans are offering their fellow Emule and Bittorrent users a file sharing insurance.

"For a mere 140 SEK ($19 USD) per year, they will pay all your fines and give you a t-shirt if you get convicted for file sharing."

That's cheap - but not entirely new. Serguey Osokine tried to do the same thing in the US with his P2P Fund back in 2003. P2P Fund wanted to establish a collective insurance fund by charging members five dollars per month. Unique about this ideas was that Osokine wanted to redistribute some of the money to artists to compensate them for file sharing - kind of a collective licensing scheme without tiresome licensing negotiations.

The whole thing never took off tho, because there wasn't enough interest. Osokine set the threshold pretty high, too. He was only gonna start P2P Fund if he got pledges for at least one million US-Dollar per year - which apprently never materialized.

06/29 2006 | 12:00 PM
Posted by: Janko Roettgers
Ths is starting to become a Limewire fan blog, but still: Those Mojito lovers over there in New York haven't only started to use their blog more regularly, they also vow to use it to be more open about their development process:

"We'll be posting here all the information you could want about the future of LimeWire, straight from the mouths of those involved. We'll talk to the developers for the Mojito DHT and BitTorrent integration, we'll talk to the leaders of our open-source community, and of course to some of LimeWire's users. without whom there would be no LimeWire."

Good news, indeed. One thing tho: You don't want to talk to some of Limewire's users. You want to talk to Limewire's users. Blogs are not a showcase for interviews, but a forum for dialogue.

06/28 2006 | 05:40 PM
Posted by: Janko Roettgers
'Tis the season for some birthdays, apparently. It was a year ago today that Steve Jobs pressed the big, red easy button and released iTunes with podcasting support into the wild. The podcasting audience exploded over night. But not everybody seems to be happy about this, according to a bithday present an article by Wired News. TWIT's Leo Laporte is quoted with some critical remarks about Apple's dominance in the space.

What puzzles me a little about the article is the general scepticism towards podcasting as a niche medium. The story quotes Steve Walch to get a sense of how many listeners the average podcaster really has:

"He noted that FeedBurner, one of the largest providers of RSS feeds, recently reported 3.3 million subscriptions for 56,000 feeds, an average of 59 subscribers per feed. Even assuming that some unknown percentage of those feeds may be dead, he said, those figures imply that podcasts with 500 listeners 'are doing really well.'"

Now what's wrong with having 500 listeners? If you serve a small, engaged community, 500 listeners may be the world to you. I also don't understand what these Feedburner numbers are supposed to explain. Feedburner serves any kind of RSS feeds, not just podcasts. So do these numbers refer to podcasting feeds alone?

And even if so: Do they make any sense at all? BizPodcasting doesn't think so:

"That bit of logic is so insanely suspect that I can't believe it made it into print."

06/28 2006 | 12:53 PM
Posted by: Janko Roettgers
Speaking of Limewire: Slyck.com has some more information about the upcoming Bittorrent and DHT support. In short: No, it's not the same thing. Yes, it will both be open source. No, they don't try to leech. Yes, Limewire is developing it's own DHT - which is called Mojito. Excellent name choice. Too bad they won't be able to mix it with Havana Club. I'm really getting sick of Bacardi.

The articles states:

"The custom and open source DHT will be specific to LimeWire and the Gnutella network, and will function to enhance the indexing ability and cohesiveness of the network, along with 'adding more security features, better spoofing-checks, etc.' It will have no interoperability with the Mainline or Azureus DHT network."


One of the big benefits of DHT might be that Magnet downloads will finally work. Today a site like Bitzi.com works fine for checking files you have downloaded, but it's really no use for downloading itself - especially when it comes to rare content. DHTs will be able to solve that problem and thus build a bridge to web-based communities.

Which actually could mean less problems. Oh well. Guess I shouldn't hang out at Villain's that much. But they do have funny T-shirts ...

06/27 2006 | 02:06 PM
Posted by: Janko Roettgers
The San Jose Mercury News commemorates the first anniversary of the SCOTUS Grokster decision with an overview over recent developments in the P2P space. At lot of the facts mentioned are known P2P obsevers already: File sharing is up despite the court decision, Hollywood and the record companies try to utilize big P2P players like Bittorrent, and so on. Still a good read.

The money shot once again comes from Eric Garland of BigChampagne:

"The social networking aspect of the Internet is continuing to blossom and no landmark court decision or watershed event changes that."

Referring to P2P as a form of social networking rather than just (illegal) downloading pretty much nails it in terms of where this space is going. As P2P is becoming part of operating systems, Instant Messaging clients and VOIP, sharing is about much more than just getting access to media. It's about transforming media.

The quote also gets some cheers from the Limewire blog:

"The article implicitly - though perhaps not knowingly - sets up the Grokster case as a shifting point in networked media despite its cry of failure. It paints a picture in which pre-Grokster is typified by a negative reputation for individual-to-individual interaction: at the height of which file-sharing was oddly re-termed “illegal downloading” in a slick move. The implied post-Grokster era, however, is that of Web 2.0, where individual-to-individual interaction is paramount, where it is the life-blood of the new business models."


Interesting that Limewire would feel that way. I wonder how much their parent company's shopping spree in India earlier this year has to do with this?

06/26 2006 | 12:00 PM
Posted by: Janko Roettgers
Digg.com has relaunched - and in turn broken its RSS feeds. Update: Guess this was just a temporary glitch due to high server load. All the RSS feeds for preexisting categories work fine again.

The relaunch itself seems to be very well thought through. Digg gets a total of five main categories, with a bunch of sub-categories by default hidden in Ajax pull-down menus. The layout of the site stays almost the same, just the navigation elements are placed differently. Much cleaner that Netscape beta.

One thing that's really missing from the mix is tagging. Digg starts to get a little too big to navigate by categories alone - especially since many story subjects can't be divided up that well between the existing categories.

Take a subject close to this blog for example: The Torrentspy vs. MPAA lawsuit. Is this Tech Industry News? Or Movies? Or even Security, as someone recently suggested?

The site could really use some sort of social tagsonomy. Submitters could provide an initial set of tags, and site members could improve those by voting / adding their own. That way Digg.com could add to their social fabric while at the same time making the site more accesible.

06/24 2006 | 05:41 PM
Posted by: Janko Roettgers
XM radio vice president Eric Logan has published an open letter to artists and songwriters that tries explain the RIAA lawsuit while at the same time downplaying its impact. In fact, Logan doesn't even mention the lawsuit at all, only refering to it as "noise and confusion". Which should not distract us from peace, love and digital audio delivery. In his own words:

"We are in the midst of a difficult negotiation with the major labels. These disagreements tend to get heated before they get resolved. Please remember: business is business, but artists are family."

06/23 2006 | 01:59 PM
Posted by: Janko Roettgers
Limewire announced on their blog that they will be supporting Bittorent as well as a custom Distributed Hash Table technology. The Bittorrent support got a lot of attention, but to me DHT was the bigger surprise. Well, that and the fact that they actually started updating their blog.

Just two years ago Limewire CTO Greg Bildson came out strongly against DHTs in an OP-Ed at CNet. In his own words:

"DHTs are the wrong way to solve a problem that doesn't exist. Meanwhile, solutions that do work are not being given the attention that they deserve. Anyway, it will be interesting to see how this plays out."

Interesting, indeed.

06/23 2006 | 12:20 PM
Posted by: Janko Roettgers
CNet news has a lenghty article about the Torrentspy lawsuit against the MPAA. A lot of the details mentioned in the article can also be found in the original court filing, which has been published here.

The court filing features a statement of Robert Anderson, who is the hacker the MPAA allegedly hired to acquire insider information from Torrentspy. From his statement:

"With respect to the information the MPAA requested me to convey to it, including the information about Torrentspy.com and the individuals involved with it, Mr. garfield explicitly said to me: 'We don't care how you get it.'

When I stated to Mr. Garfield my concern over the potential of my liability fro providing the above-described non-public information to the MPAA and Mr. Garfield, Mr. Garfield expressily told me not to worry and stated that the MPAA would protect me from liability for obtaining and providing such information."


06/22 2006 | 07:58 PM
Posted by: Janko Roettgers
Techcrunch is reporting that Digg 3.0 will launch next Monday. The site will apparently feature six main categories as well as some new Ajax magic. Techcruch has a few advance screenshots, and also some quite impressive Digg stats:

"About 800,000 unique visitors come to Digg every day, generating 9 million plus page views. The site is doubling in traffic every two months."

06/21 2006 | 01:16 PM
Posted by: Janko Roettgers
A few weeks ago German law enforcement officials launched a massive strike against Edonkey / Emule users. 130 residencies were raided, and a total of 3500 users are under investigation.

The average German P2P user couldn't care less, apparently. Leipzig-based traffic management company Ipoque now reports that the crackdown led to "almost no change in the downloading behaviour" of P2P users. Right after the raids P2P traffic was down 15 percent, but three weeks later it's business as usual for teutonic file traders.

Here's a snapshot of Germany's network traffic before and after the raids, as provided by Ipoque:

German network traffic

Ipoque has been measuring P2P traffic with the help of German network operators and apparently was able to get anonymous usage data for about 250.000 German net users. This allowed them to draw some intersting conclusions about file sharing in Germany: Right now P2P accounts for 50% of all internet traffic during daytime and up to 80% at nighttime. P2P is dominated by Edonkey / Emule (50%) and
Bittorrent (45%). Gnutella users are responsible for 2.5% of all P2P traffic, and Kazaa / Fasttrack doesn't seem to be on the map at all anymore.

Unsuprisingly, Ipoque doesn't think file trading will go down in Germany anytime soon. People would instead just take up additional security measures, like encrypting their hard discs.

06/21 2006 | 12:28 PM
Posted by: Janko Roettgers
The US Senate is gearing up for a vote on net neutrality, and the Telco-financed nonprofits are hammering the D.C. airwaves with ads that bash big government interference and big, bad Google.

Jeff Jarvis reports that those ads feature a striking resemblance to that call I got a few weeks ago. At least they think that our representatives are as stupid as we are supposed to be.

06/20 2006 | 07:44 PM
Posted by: Janko Roettgers
Now this is quite something: Swedens State Secretary Dan Eliasson admitted in an interview with a local newspaper (as reported by Slyck.com) that the US government was threatening the country with trade sanctions to expedite actions against The Pirate Bay. Apparenly the MPAA intervened in concert with US officials. The paper ist hosting the PDF of a letter to Eliasson that has some harsh words for Swedish copyriht enforcements effords:

"Clearly the complaints that we filed on behalf of our members in 2004 and 2005 with the police in Stockholm and Gothenburg against the operators of The Pirate Bay have resulted in no action. As I am sure you are aware, the American Embassy has sent entreaties to the Swedish government urgirig it to rake action against The Pirate Bay and other organizations operating within Sweden that facililate copyright theft. As we discussed during our meeting, it is certainly not in Sweden's best interests to earn a reputation anlong other nations and trading partners as a place where utter lawlessness with respect to intellectual property rights is tolerated."

Utter lawlessness. The longer if look at that phrase the more I have to think of IKEA furniture names.

On an interesting side not: The MPAA forwarded an article from Slyck.com to make their point about the decline of northern civilisation. Congratilations to the Slyck team for making their way into John Malcolm's bookmarks.

06/20 2006 | 12:52 PM
Posted by: Janko Roettgers
Gizmodo has an interesting IM-based interview with an editor of Adult Video News. It's all about Blu Ray and HD DVD - and whether the porn industry will decide who is gonna win. It's fun, too, because ramblings like this ...

"Gizmodo: like on lost
Gizmodo: and half of the island will have blu-ray
Gizmodo: and half will have HD-DVD
Gizmodo: and then they’ll start killing each other as offerings to the DVD gods
Gizmodo: but what’s in the hatch!
"

... make the good folks at Gizmodo sound almost as insane as an industry that tries to establish two competing formats that nobody wants.

06/20 2006 | 12:19 PM
Posted by: Janko Roettgers
Amazon Web Services Evangelist Jeff Bahr recently wrote about his company's Bittorrent support on his blog. As reported here before, Amazon's S3 storage solution supports Bittorrent seeding out of the bow. Jeff calculates how much that might save content providers:

"The traditional download would cost 60 cents to upload, 45 cents to store and $60 to download, for a total of $61.05. The BitTorrent download would again cost 60 cents to upload, 45 cents to store, but just 60 more cents to download, for a total of $1.65. As I noted above, this is the best possible case, where the clients use an optimal/perfect random distribution of initial block requests, so each block is downloaded from the seed just once. Even if the clients aren’t perfect and each block is downloaded, say, 5 times, the total cost is still just $3.45, or just 6% of the traditional cost."

Six percent still seems a little low to me. People who have distributed files with server-based Bittorrent seeds have told me that up to 20 percent of the data comes from the server. Which still saves you 80 percent. That ain't too bad either.

06/19 2006 | 08:13 PM
Posted by: Janko Roettgers
The Pirate Bay has returned to Sweden - and in turn temporarily changed its name to The Phoenix Bay, named after every smoker's dream that old Greek tale. They also updated their logo accordingly:

piratebay
06/19 2006 | 12:20 PM
Posted by: Janko Roettgers
CNet News is reporting about a new Sony BMG music video site called Musicbox. The article makes the whole thing sound very promising:

"Individuals thus could create sites focused around certain artists by linking to video channels on the Musicbox site dedicated to them, or link to several channels which, in the aggregate, comprise the most mawkish artists (in the view of the blogger) that Sony has to offer."

Unfortunately links is all you get out of Musicbox. They have a fancy Flash player, generate links on the fly, allow to send those via E-Mail or copy them directly to yourt clipboard - but you can only play videos directly on the Musicbox site. Integrating the player into your own site - one of the features that made Youtube so successful - is not possible.

This is especially bizarre since Musicbox is ad supported. More plays would generate more revenue. But of course allowing third parties to host your content - even if it was only through some Javascript trickery - would mean to give up control. And that ain't gonna happen, no matter how much sense it might make.

06/16 2006 | 07:37 PM
Posted by: Janko Roettgers
By now probably everybody has heard about the new Netscape portal that beta-launched this week. It's sort of Digg meets Google news - or that's at least what it's aiming to be. So far, a lot of early users have been very critical, to be point of voting a story titled "AOL copies Digg" on the front page. Funny, I don't remember ever seeing any "Digg clones Kuro5hin" stories on Digg.com.

Aside from the expected snapping at the newbie, many of the critics do have a point. Netscape.com is very cluttered, many features don't work as advertised, and the up to now about 2000 registered members don't seem to make much of an impact yet. Stories with just one vote regularly make it on the front page. But hey, it's beta.

The charming thing about this is that the Netscape.com team seem to get what being beta is all about. They don't suppress critical postings - quite the contrary. Netscape's new boss Jason Calacanis even links to some of these stories on his (more or less) personal blog. In his own words:

"The DIGG crowd has been having a great time slamming the New Netscape over the past 24 hours, but if you look beyond their venom they actually have some amazing suggestions--the best ones so far in fact!"

The New York Times article about Netscape.com
refered to Calacanis as AOL's own Butterfield or Schachter. It looks like he got the first part of the Flickr mantra: Listen to your users. Time will tell if AOL is willing to change course as much as Flickr did in its early months to follow-up on these responses.

06/15 2006 | 02:00 PM
Posted by: Janko Roettgers
CNet is reporting about talks between EMI and viral video sites like Youtube.com to stop the distribution of infringing content. Apparently they want to use fingerprinting technologies to filter out commercial music videos. Of course this doesn't work for derivative works, i.e. your average lip sync video. It looks like EMI is still unsure what to do about those. From the article:

"A user-generated video of a fan lip-syncing a popular song may be viewed as harmless, or even helpful for promoting the band, among rights holders. But depending on the band, song and the nature of the video (if say, it contains racy material), the uploaded video might be taken down if the record label has its way."


Better get those Dormitory Boys videos while you can!

06/15 2006 | 12:15 PM
Posted by: Janko Roettgers
Epitonic.com used to be a great ressource for promotional indie music downloads. The site had some problems with financing early on, then got sold to Sputnik7.com - and didn't really get on the right track again. For the last 1.5 years Epitonic had virtually no updates.

A few weeks ago they relaunched with something that seems to be more of a focused approach. It looks more like showcases now, not like a huge download directory. Which might be good for the labels, but I'm not sure it will translate into sufficient page views for Epitonic.

Epitonic also started a download store in cooperation with Echospin. At least that's what we heard recently at a music industry conference. You can't really tell from looking at their site. Which, again, might be good or bad, depending on who you are. Consumers might feel that there are enough download stores out there already. Epitonic and Echospin might disagree.

06/14 2006 | 12:28 PM
Posted by: Janko Roettgers
The Russian download site Allofmp3.com has gotten a lot of press lately: First it went offline for a couple of days, leading to speculations of a shutdown. Just a few days after Allofmp3 returned from the dead, which was answered by the music industry by announing further legal proceedings. Even the New York Times reported recently about Allofmp3, carefully describing the site as "possibly illegal".

Of course every mention of Allofmp3.com in the press is driving more customers to the site. So why would the music industry help Allofmp3 with their advertising? Because the Russian website will have to shut down this fall, and IFPI is just waiting to claim this as their victory.

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06/14 2006 | 01:25 AM
Posted by: Janko Roettgers
The Windows Vista team responded on Monday to websites offering Bittorrent downloads of the latest Vista beta. Looks like they don't care too much for it. In their own words:

"We've become aware of alternative public channels that have cropped up to deliver the product in parallel. We must state that we cannot encourage those interested in using and testing the code to utilize these alternate channels."


Upon second reading: Maybe they are really just trying to get people to look for the Torrents. You know, in a "we've become aware of it and thought we should share this with you" kind of way. Wink wink, nudge nudge. So far it seems like they haven't send C&D notices to Vistatorrent.com or Bittorrent.com either. Say no more?

Update: Looks like not everyon at Microsoft likes Monty Python, err, Bittorrent. Vistatorrent finally received their C&D.

06/13 2006 | 12:13 PM
Posted by: Janko Roettgers
RIAA CEO Mitch Bainwol celebrates the success of the RIAA lawuits against file sharing operators and their users in a USA Today piece. Because, you know, file sharing is "contained".

"Digital downloads have emerged into a growing, thriving business, and file-trading is flat."

Now even if that was true - it doesn't exactly smell like success. More than 20.000 lawsuits against file traders, major P2P players knocked out of the game, and all you end up with is less growth?

06/12 2006 | 08:46 PM
Posted by: Janko Roettgers
Bruce Sterling might be a great Sci Fi writer, but he seems to have some problems with predicting the imminent future. His column in this months Wired magazine deals with word of mouth blog marketing, and has him asking:

"Have you ever seen an ad for Skype? Any kind of pitch, anywhere?"

Actually, we have. Okay, not seen, but definitely heard. Skype announced this maketing move in May - but that might have been a little too late for the Wired deadline. Too bad, because a bold statement like this one ...

"The new breed of online business has no need to advertise."

... really would sound better if your prime example wasn't doing "online advertising, radio spots and ads in selected local cable TV markets", as Skype currently is, according to CNN.

06/12 2006 | 11:21 AM
Posted by: Janko Roettgers
Microsoft is distributing the latest beta version of Vista as a free Web download - and gets hammered for that. Literally. The servers seem to be heavily overloaded, which leads Microsoft to advertise the DVD version iof the beta. Chris Pirillo and Jake Ludington didn't want to wait - and so they started Vistatorrent.com to distribute the software as a Bittorrent download. So far Microsoft hasn't officially objected.

The idea is hardly new tho. The fine folks at Downhillbattle.org did the same thing when the service pack 2 for XP came out. After a short while they got a C&D notice, whch brought the little experiment to an end. We'll see if Microsoft has learned anything this time around.

Update: Bittorrent.com is hosting another Windows Vista beta Torent. has deleted their torrent as well.

06/11 2006 | 01:47 PM
Posted by: Janko Roettgers
Guess word of mouth only gets you so far: I hread my first Skype radio ad Friday on some station in San Francisco. It was a long clip too, explaining how you can call any number in the US for free until the end of the year. Does that mean the expected growth due to free calls didn't materialize? Or is this just a step of becoming part of the Ebay universe?
06/09 2006 | 12:38 PM
Posted by: Janko Roettgers
This Business Week article doesn't realy mention P2P networks (or Creative Commons porn, for that matter), but it's still an interesting read.

06/08 2006 | 11:51 AM
Posted by: Janko Roettgers
Jon just announced on his blog that he left San Diego for San Francisco, where he will be working for DoubleTwist Ventures. Guess he got a little bored in SoCal since Michael Robertson doesn't seem to have any reverse engineering plans for MP3Tunes.com. Well, or maybe it's about other things.

So who is DoubleTwist Ventures? Good question. Apparently they were founded in February 2006 by Monique Farantzos as an icubator for a social networking startup. Reverse engineering proprietary rights management technologies seems to be the second leg of the stool. Looks like something to keep an eye on.

06/07 2006 | 12:24 PM
Posted by: Janko Roettgers
Sort of, at least. The European ISP was running a Mercora-powered service called "Juke Box". The service got shut down after the IFPI complained about missing license agreements - even tho they apparently used the same type of licensing that is in place for the US service of Mercora. BBC News quotes someone from Tiscali saying:

"I don't quite understand why the European record labels appear to have a problem, whereas the ones in the US don't."

06/06 2006 | 03:55 PM
Posted by: Janko Roettgers
This is interesting: Allofmp3.com has published a statement in answer to shutdown demands from western politicians and music industry execs. It defends it's current legal status and reiterates the fact that it is licensed by Russian rights agecies. Been there, heard that.

But then Allofmp3 suprises everybody by acknowledging that they have been working on licensing agreements with record companies. Apparently they are about to significantly change their business model:

"On September 1, 2006 the changes to the Russian copyright legislation will come into force. Since January 2006 the site has been making direct agreements with rightholders and authors at the same time increasing the price of the music compositions and transferring the royalties directly to the artists and record companies. The aim of AllofMP3.com is to agree with all rightholders on the prices and royalties amounts by September 1, 2006."

(via P2Pnet.net)
06/06 2006 | 01:42 PM
Posted by: Janko Roettgers
A couple of days ago my first CD from Lala.com arrived. Actually, it got send to me by a Lala.com member, since the service facilitates P2P style disc swapping. The CD itself is quite alright. It has one or two scratches, but nothing out of the ordinary. You probably could expect to pay up to 10 bucks for it at a used CD store. Lala.com charges only a buck, plus one of your own CDs in case you want to receive any further.

There is a few things about this that seem remarkable to me.
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06/05 2006 | 12:44 PM
Posted by: Janko Roettgers
Jupiter analyst Mark Mulligan has read the "UK All Party Parliamentary Internet Group Report on DRM" and now shares some interesting observations with us. Like the the All Party Parliamentary Internet Group advice that using XCP-like DRM technologies in the UK might result in criminal charges. Or this one:

"The legislative tide is turning against DRM."

Which pretty much sums it all up, while at the same time reminding us of that really disturbing shark movie we saw the other day on HBO. People, if you have to go scuba diving, don't hand your life over to a bunch of dorks that cannot keep count of the people on their tiny ass boat. Uhm, yes, and read Mark Mulligan's blog.
06/05 2006 | 01:24 AM
Posted by: Janko Roettgers
Philipp Lenssen has his own take on the new Canadian super hero Captain Copyright ...

Captain Copyright spoof

Read the whole episode at Google Blogscoped.
06/04 2006 | 05:25 PM
Posted by: Janko Roettgers
Well, she didn't really go that far. Nonetheless, the former chairman and CEO of the Recording Industry Association of America came out criticising the lawsuits against file sharing users today. In her own carefully chosen words:

"For the record, I do share a concern that the lawsuits have outlived most of their usefulness."

Apparently we might hear more statements like this one from her in the future.

"Speaking of DRM, it is time to rethink that strategy as well......... At some point, I will write more comprehensively about those years and these issues....then again, maybe not."

Don't be shy, Hillary. We're listening.
06/04 2006 | 04:05 PM
Posted by: Janko Roettgers
Billboard writer Brian Garrity has some interesting insights into the "threat" of music video sharing via Youtube & Co. Apparently Google Video uses content filters to keep unauthorized Sony BMG music videos off its system:

"A search on Google Video for clips from commerce partner Sony BMG yields only video-for-sale offers, while searches for videos from other labels' artists produce unauthorized video postings."
06/02 2006 | 08:01 PM
Posted by: Janko Roettgers
This just in: The Pirate Bay plans a relaunch for this Saturday. Servers will be located in the Netherlands, the Ukraine, Russia and one other unnamed European country. Apparently this was first announced Friday morning at Reboot.dk.

Update: Looks like the site is up and running again. Interestingly enough, none of the mainstream media outlets seem to have noticed yet.
06/02 2006 | 04:54 PM
Posted by: Janko Roettgers
The Chinese search engine and Google nemesis Baidu has launched a social playlist sharing site. Kinda looks like Webjay - except for the fact that it is fed by Baidu's MP3 search function, thus making it a lot easier to compile, ehm, popular playlists. Which is probably why the billsdue blog calls this "Social Piracy".

(via Digg.com)
06/02 2006 | 12:43 PM
Posted by: Janko Roettgers
Guess this was inevitable: Some Pirate Bay fans ran a Denial of Service attack against a website of the Swedish police today, forcing it to shut down. The BBC has more.
06/01 2006 | 10:27 AM
Posted by: Janko Roettgers
Zeitspuk.de did an interview with one of the members of the recently raided Swedish bittorrent website The Pirate Bay. Apparently they try to get a backup site up within a week. From the interview:

"We are currently working hard on a solution and I would be very disappointed in us if we couldn't get TPB up and running again within a week. It is very possible that we move into other countries, possibly Holland, with Russia as a Backup. There are some problems with decentralization, but a solution which would keep TPB up even if one location is taken down would be good."

06/01 2006 | 01:00 AM
Posted by: Janko Roettgers
The Swedish Bittorrent website The Pirate Bay got raided by local police today. Apparently 50 policemen confiscated multiple servers and detained three admins for questioning. Also impacted are Piratbyran, and to some lesser degree, Mininova, due to shared infrastructure. Slyck and the Pirate Party have more information, but the sites both seem to be really slow - probably due to some heavy Slashdotting.

By now there are a few updates available: The MPAA celebrates the raid with the headline "SWEDISH AUTHORITIES SINK PIRATE BAY". The Swedish newspaper The Local reports that ten ofices and / or private residencies were raided as well. And Piratbyran has set up a temporary blog, which so far only features Swedish-language press release.