Are peer-to-peer music thieves the music industry's best customers? In an ironic twist to the music industry's woes, a new study suggests that P2P downloaders may buy more music than their straight-laced, non-P2P brethren. The results are non-conclusive one way or the other, but the researchers conclude:However, our analysis of the Canadian P2P file-sharing subpopulation suggests that there is a strong positive relationship between P2P file-sharing and CD purchasing. That is, among Canadians actually engaged in it, P2P file-sharing increases CD purchasing.… Read more
Today, "peer to peer" is inextricably linked to a variety of techniques for P2P file-sharing, whereby the recipients of a large file supply chunks of data to other recipients.
This distributes the load compared with everyone downloading a file from some central. For this and other reasons, P2P networks have proven popular for sharing MP3 music files although they're suitable for distributing any sizable digital content; for example, one also sees P2P employed to distribute Linux distributions, which can run into the gigabytes.
However, a few weeks ago I attended MIT Technology Review's EmTech07 Emerging Technologies Conference and attended a session where I was reminded that another "P2P" was once the subject of great buzz.
At the Fall 2000 Intel Developer Forum, outgoing Intel CEO Craig Barrett called peer-to-peer computing a "new wave which is going to have material impact on our industry." And he wasn't talking about file sharing.
Pat Gelsinger, who was Intel's CTO at the time, was even more enthusiastic in his keynote:… Read more
As it turns out, not as much as Radiohead's evil record label used to. As The Register reports on the Open Season podcast, not only have Radiohead fans been misrepresenting how much they've been paying for the free In Rainbows, but even if we take their word for it, it's still not as much as Radiohead would make had the band stayed with EMI.
People told the survey that they paid 8 pounds ($16), but the numbers don't support this. People actually paid closer to 2.50 ($5). Radiohead normally make about 3 ($6) (after royalties and such) with their record label. As such, Radiohead is actually making less giving the songs away than they did with the greedy capitalist record label, EMI.
So, was Radiohead foolish to experiment with free distribution? Or is it the sort of model that only millionaire artists can afford to indulge? (And is there an open-source analog here?)
I'm not sure, but I really did pay $20 for my copy of In Rainbows, and it is well worth it.
Oh, and by the way, Capgemini did a report which found that iTunes and the unbundling of singles represents a far greater threat to the record labels in terms of revenues lost than peer-to-peer file sharing:… Read more
Wuala is a new company with a compelling story for Web users: If you want to share files--music, videos, anything--with your friends and family, it will let you do it for free, with no file-size or bandwidth limits.
The catch: You get 1GB of storage for free. Beyond that, you get access to free storage in proportion to the amount of storage from your own hard drive that you share with the Wuala community.
Wuala uses a "mesh" of hard drives from all its users. Everything you share gets sliced into 500 or so pieces and the distributed in tiny bits, and redundancy, to thousands of other users. When you, or someone you're sharing the file with, wants to load or play a file, it's pulled in from users, BitTorrent-like.
It's not easy to build a reliable storage network based on end-user PCs, which tend to be online only sporadically, and with poor upstream bandwidth. Wuala rewards its users that stay online: The amount of storage users have access to is equal to the amount of storage from their own drives that they've set aside for the Wuala network, multiplied by the average percentage of time that their machine is online. In other words, if you're sharing 20GB of your hard disk, and your PC is on 50 percent of the time, you'll be able to use 10GB of space on the Wuala network. PCs that are network-connected less than 20 percent of the time cannot share their space at all.
All files you put up on the network are replicated extensively, so you'll always be able to get the data that you've uploaded. CEO Dominik Grolimund assured me. We had a nice talk about the mechanics of his network's security, redundancy, and reliability that I won't replay here, other than to say that if Wuala doesn't work as reliably as traditional centralized storage, it's going to be a very short-lived start-up.
Peer-to-peer company BitTorrent is set to announce on Tuesday morning the availability of a new enterprise content delivery product, BitTorrent DNA. Designed for companies that use streaming video, large downloads or games over the Web, the launch of BitTorrent DNA marks yet another conscious move by the San Francisco-based software brand to move beyond its roots as the creator of file-sharing protocol that became nearly synonymous with digital piracy over the past few years.
BitTorrent described the new BitTorrent DNA product in a statement as "the ideal solution for publishers seeking ways to overcome the obstacles associated with centralized … Read more
From all that we've heard about Michael Moore's soon-to-be released documentary indictment of the U.S. health care system, he clearly supports universal health care.
But does he support universal Web access to his film two weeks before its official release? Probably not, or at least his studio doesn't.
Advertising Age reported Friday that Moore's new film, Sicko, has been pirated and is widely available for free download on the Web at BitTorrent and peer-to-peer sites. Advertising Age reporter Claude Brodesser-Akner wrote that he easily downloaded a copy and watched it late Thursday night.
The breach … Read more
Sharing files from your PC is nothing new. BitTorrent is all about sharing media files with the world, as Napster was before it. And file sharing products like Pando, eSnips, Titanize, Box.Net, YouBackItUp, and many others make it possible to share other files, or even entire directories and hard drives.
So when the team from Izimi pitched me on their new PC-based file publishing system as "the future of Internet publishing," I didn't really share their wonder.
I did try to find the spark of this product over the weekend. What I found was a tool … Read more