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Is pirating still a thing?

Snarky-Guru

Member
Messages
99
Points
8
It feels like ages since Napster, Limewire, Demonoid, and The Prate Bay were hot topics. Do people still pirate today, or has it fallen out of favour?
 

headrush

Member
Messages
139
Points
18
Would recording concerts with your phone and uploading on social media count? A lot of those posts get taken down quickly, but not before others make their own copies, etc.
 

DandyMandy

Member
Messages
140
Points
18
I don't think there's a need for regular users to pirate through torrents anymore. Now it all gets uploaded to YouTube instead. Maybe that's why so many lawsuits have stopped. And downloading YouTube content feels less like pirating.
 

Zack T

Active Member
Messages
751
Points
43
Yes it's still huge. YouTube does have a lot of stuff, but you try uploading anything copyrighted and you may find your video removed due to copyright issues. Sometimes people get lucky for awhile, but it just depends on how aggressive the IP holders are. WWE, certain music labels, certain channels (like Fox) are all hyper vigilant. Plus there's stuff that you can't upload to youtube in the first place anyway. Try searching for full movies or episodes of stuff - the best you'll find in most cases is "The Flash S2 E2 Part 1" or short clips, unless you pay YouTube to rent or buy it. That's assuming it's even offered in the first place, since Hulu or Netflix may have rights to streaming.

Most people who pirate moved on from downloading applications like Napster or Limewire or Kazzaa, and instead use Torrents now. They work somewhat similarly - you download a program that allows you to download .torrent files, something like bittorent or uTorrent (they're free). Then you go to a website that shares torrent files, download something (Let's say Titanic.torrent if you want the movie Titanic). Then that torrent file is opened by your program, and it gives you familiar download options of where you want to put the movie on your computer and then it starts downloading.

It works similarly to how Napster and all them worked, in that it's peer 2 peer sharing (meaning you're connected to other people around the world who have the file you're downloading on their computer). It's rad because you don't need a perfect 1 to 1 connection. It's smart enough to be able to connect to however many people have the file you want, and take bits and pieces from each of them based on who is providing the fastest download speed.

So let's say I want to download the Titanic movie, I get the torrent set up and ready to download - uTorrent or bittorrent or whatever will connect to however many other people are sharing this same .torrent file because they've already got the completed movie downloaded on their computer. The more people that are sharing the file, the faster it'll download (generally speaking).

It's best to use a private torrent site, one that requires sign-ups and keeps track of how much each user shares/downloads to ensure that people aren't just downloading and then peacing out (Cause this whole system relies on people sharing what they've already got/downloaded to others in order to work). A protected site like that helps reduce the risk that your ISP or the law will come swinging down on you. People who are even more security-minded also may use VPN's to mask their activity while torrenting. Also it should be noted that anything you're sharing is only being shared while you have your torrent program (uTorrent) open. It can run in the background, it can automatically start with your computer if you want it to. But you're only sharing and helping others download while that program is open, not automatically all the time - you have control.

TLDR: Yes pirating is still around and very very popular, you just use torrents instead of something like Napster these days. It requires just a little bit more work to get yourself going than downloading Napster did, but literally only a little bit more, and then you're off to the races.
 
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coleman

Member
Messages
154
Points
18
Pirate bay used to be in the in thing at some point, until the founders started having run-ins with the authorities. @Zack T, correct me if I'm wrong but is it the case that a movie gets highly seeded when there are multiple downloads from different locations? I like the idea of a VPN, but still, downloading torrents seems like a risky affair.
 
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Zack T

Active Member
Messages
751
Points
43
Yea that's basically how it works. When you download something like a movie through a torrent, you're not downloading it from 1 location, you're actually downloading tons of little pieces of it from all the different people sharing that movie, and then uTorrent puts it all back together in the proper order for you when it's done downloading so you can watch it without ever knowing that maybe the last 3 minutes downloaded first :p

I'd say don't do anything you're truly uncomfortable with, but my impression is that it's much harder and more costly to try and track individuals than it is to try and crack a website, like Pirate Bay, for it. The fact that VPN's exist do make it much more difficult to tie an individual to it. These sites are oftentimes hosted in other countries to avoid copyright law issues, but obviously it still can happen - But that's who they'd prefer to go after, because that's oftentimes where the actual money is. There's been a few small cases of individuals being hit with ridiculous fees to make an example of them, but truthfully it's super super rare for that to happen.
 
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