The Pirate Bay Puts Bit Torrent on Facebook
- March 30, 2009 |
- 6:46 am |
- Categories: Miscellaneous
Bit torrent tracker site The Pirate Bay extended tendrils into Facebook as it awaits the verdict of its copyright infringement trial.
A new link showed up on The Pirate Bay search results over the weekend called “Share on Facebook,” as TorrentFreak reported. By clicking the link, users can share torrent tracker links — often used to download large music and movie files via the bit torrent protocol — via Facebook, by either posting it on their profile pages or sending the link to friends using Facebook’s private messaging feature.
3/30 Update: Facebook tells us, “We are looking into this and have contacted the developer, but have not taken any specific action.” 5/7 Update: Facebook later started blocking The Pirate Bay’s torrent links, to the dismay of legal experts.
Clearly, many Facebook users will think twice about posting public links to copyrighted content without permission on their profile pages.
But as a way of thumbing its nose at the establishment once again while enabling quick and easy private file sharing between Facebook friends, the Pirate Bay’s Facebook integration is quite effective.
It could also have the possibly unintended side effect of increasing legitimate use of The Pirate Bay and the bit torrent protocol. For instance, bands could use the new feature to distribute music videos to fans via Facebook, without paying any hosting costs.
Here’s how it works. After searching for a file on The Pirate Bay and clicking the “Share” link pictured above, I can choose whether to share the torrent link with all my contacts or just specific ones:
The bit torrent link shows up as a “shared link” on my profile page.
Anyone with a bit torrent client installed can download the file from strangers around the world by clicking the link:
This really couldn’t be much simpler. Sharing a Pirate Bay torrent tracker link via Facebook takes three mouse clicks the first time you do it, and two clicks thereafter.
We’ve asked Facebook whether it has any comment on The Pirate Bay’s integration with its social network, and whether it plans to to take any action to take the links down, and hope to post a response soon.