R.I.P. Suprnova
December 19, 2004 8:45 AM   Subscribe

R.I.P. SuprNova Greetings everybody, As you have probably noticed, we have often had downtimes. This was because it was so hard to keep this site up! But now we are sorry to inform you all, that SuprNova is closing down for good in the way that we all know it. Apparently something went down last night that prompted this exit from the scene, a great loss indeed as suprnova was the gold standard for bittorrent sites. From the inside I have also learned work on exeem is being halted (any beta testers can verify?) trying to head off problems previously seen here.
posted by gren (140 comments total)
 
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posted by Faint of Butt at 8:47 AM on December 19, 2004


Yeah, I just noticed that too. Just yesterday /. posted a BitTorrent analysis from The Register in which Suprnova figured prominently.
posted by RockCorpse at 8:49 AM on December 19, 2004


There goes my source for HDTV CSI :-(

It boggles my mind that the TV companies haven't yet figured out that they could release their shows onto the BT networks, embed adverts, then sit back and let other people pay for the data distribution.
posted by meehawl at 8:52 AM on December 19, 2004


This comes in the wake of Hollywood launching a massive legal offensive against bitTorrent sites. I'm sure SuperNova was included in this.
posted by daHIFI at 8:55 AM on December 19, 2004


Interesting -- Suprnova wasn't actually a tracker, it just provided links to torrents on other trackers; presumably the link in the FPP would be just as legally dubious.

Also interesting to note that TorrentBits, perhaps the major open-but-private tracker, seems to have permanently closed up shop in the last few days.
posted by aaronetc at 8:56 AM on December 19, 2004


That's a shame.. I hope tvtorrents [dot] net stays alive (try it meehawl)..
posted by Mossy at 9:00 AM on December 19, 2004


d'oh at my formatting not coming out quite the way I wanted....at leas the content is right ;)

RockCorpse: the 'gold standard' link I added in there is that same analysis link :)

daHIFI: check the 'seen here' link for a previous thread on the raid of a Finnish BT site...also a story on the MPAA vs BitTorrent links from the previous.
posted by gren at 9:04 AM on December 19, 2004


theres still piratebay and isohunt. still though, this sucks.

also, if you haven't read it, piratebays legal threat section is worth a laugh.
posted by puke & cry at 9:08 AM on December 19, 2004


Sadness.
posted by grabbingsand at 9:09 AM on December 19, 2004


Wow... I was on SuprNova just yesterday... does anyone know exactly what happened here? It seems like something happened all of a sudden in the last 18 hours...
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 9:16 AM on December 19, 2004


Wow, did that JUST happen?
I booted up, logged in, checked MeFi, read this headline, tabbed over to my Supr window... Looks fine (torrents from 12/19). His refresh.. Wah wah.
Now that's a quick FPP!
That said, I'm obviously bummed that it's gone.
Damn you dirty apes! Damn you all to hell!
posted by numlok at 9:24 AM on December 19, 2004


gren, oops, sorry. since i'd already visited the link, it was kinda invisible. werd.

XQUZYPHYR, I know they were having technical problems keeping that site up for a quite a while. The wording of their notice is odd, though...sounds like there was something else that happened to prompt this decision.
posted by RockCorpse at 9:25 AM on December 19, 2004


Damn... I was on it only today. It will be missed.

Looks like the movie industry is making the same mistake as the music industry did with the original Napster. I expect after a period of futile attempts to roll back the tide, they'll eventually start running their own download services. By which time the illegal services will be too diverse and entrenched for them to make a deal with.

Cache link: Top 10 Suprnova alternatives.
posted by TheophileEscargot at 9:29 AM on December 19, 2004


*cries* My fave place.
posted by dabitch at 9:40 AM on December 19, 2004


I don't think this is a "mistake" by the movie industry at all--I think they're learning from the mistakes of the music industry (and note that the music industry is now making big bucks from iMusic and other licensed download sites, whereas Napster is no more, so who was actually the loser there?) and following the parts of that strategory that worked--get rid of the big names, open your own licensed sites, and don't worry too much about illegal small fry except to have your attorneys bulldog them every now and then.
posted by Sidhedevil at 9:44 AM on December 19, 2004


It looks like Torrentbits, Youceff and a few others are down too. Lokitorrent doesn't have any links available...
posted by jackofsaxons at 9:54 AM on December 19, 2004


If only The Pirate Bay was better.
posted by Mayor Curley at 10:01 AM on December 19, 2004


numlok: I was talking to Solncek this morning, someone was arrested, which, if you've ever been, is prolly the worst experience ever (on one occasion I counted all the cinderblocks in the cell waiting to get bailed out) so they were quick to shutdown. I was writing the post while he was writing the front page explination about the closing...we both just happened to finish at the same time. The site was working (showing all the .torrents) but none of them worked (No mirror found) until his FPP was up. There are several people snagging the 10GB of .torrents as we speak, so there should be some mirrors of what was there...tho it wont go on as before....
posted by gren at 10:07 AM on December 19, 2004


Napster is no more

Well, the brand has been re-animated and is now run by Roxio.

I think the whole legal music downloads should be seen in context. Apple's iTMS accounts for around 70% of legal downloads. it recently saw its 200 millionth download.

By comparison, something like 1.5 billion songs are traded illegally every month.

So the entire legal music download industry is still just a tiny sliver, a rounding error, of the market for downloads.

It's notable that when Real ran its 49c download promotion it got 3m downloads in a couple of days, eclipsing (briefly) the iTMS in daily volume.

One obvious way to convert some of the 1.5 billion monthly downloads into revenue is to release tracks not at 99c, or at 49c, but at 10c or even 1c. Especially for older tracks. Of course, given the reluctance of the music industry to move to a low-cost high-volume model, this is unlikely.
posted by meehawl at 10:09 AM on December 19, 2004


Copying digital media you don't have the rights to is illegal in the US and most countries. This is not new. You might not like it, it may be stupid, but those are what the rules are right now.

Of course, bittorrent itself isn't illegal... but how can anyone justify suprnova's legality?
posted by andreaazure at 10:13 AM on December 19, 2004


Here's a cache link to an interview with Solncek in May 2004.
I’m quite happy I live in Slovenia. I guess it would be a lot harder to keep {a} site like this up in USA. What kind of laws {the} EU will bring to Slovenia, I don’t want to know, but right now I’m quite happy since I can order computer things from around Europe without paying the boarder fees ;).

I haven’t {had} many problems with {the} law so far, all I got was some emails from MPAA or DMCA, but mostly it was my web hosting providers that got {emails}.
posted by Nelson at 10:13 AM on December 19, 2004


I made a comment about Suprnova a few days ago that is probably relevant to this. I know from friends of mine that the Slovenian police were recently asking around about sloncek & company. Once his identity was outted in a popular magazine, it was only a matter of time before the authorities clamped down.
posted by Ljubljana at 10:14 AM on December 19, 2004


allofmp3 has songs has 2 cents per mb. But yeah, might as well use soulseek.
posted by puke & cry at 10:17 AM on December 19, 2004


i find it interesting that "the music industry" really doesn't consist of musicians, but rather promoters, distributors, sellers and pr flaks. fuck them all.
posted by quonsar at 10:20 AM on December 19, 2004


Aw, man.

The site was a great way for me to find TV show links; when my fianceé and I would miss Lost or The Amazing Race, I'd have the episode downloaded and burned to a DVD the next day for us to catch up on.

Sad face.
posted by ShawnStruck at 10:20 AM on December 19, 2004


It was too good to be true anyway. But I agree. Why the hell can't I download my weekly shot of Enterprise legally? Stick some ad-banners in them, even ask a small fee. You could probably *still* sell them on DVD afterwards (it's actually a good incentive for making quality DVD-extras!).
posted by Harry at 10:21 AM on December 19, 2004


quonsar, cartel is more like it. I'm a musician. I don't particularly find it "interesting". Maddening, yup.
posted by RockCorpse at 10:23 AM on December 19, 2004


One obvious way to convert some of the 1.5 billion monthly downloads into revenue is to release tracks not at 99c, or at 49c, but at 10c or even 1c. Especially for older tracks. Of course, given the reluctance of the music industry to move to a low-cost high-volume model, this is unlikely.

That's not viable if you want the artists and songwriters (the latter get 8¢ of every song sold, or something like that) to get paid, and if you want to use your credit card—unless you want to have a minimum on the number of songs you pay for at once.

Besides, if the music industry were to move to this model, they still couldn't compete with free. "I wouldn't have bought it anyway" is a completely invalid excuse.
posted by oaf at 10:26 AM on December 19, 2004


andreazzure: Copying digital media you don't have the rights to is illegal in the US and most countries. This is not new.

That's true. But I used BitTorrent (via Suprnova and others) to download digital files of things I *do* have the rights to, namely network TV. I have a tv. The TV gets the shows. I could legally watch those shows.

And I should be legally able to time-shift those shows via any technical means I choose.

This is the same for cable TV if you're a subscriber to cable. Or HBO (and the other pay channels) if you're a subscriber to those services.

So, in my life, it's legal to torrent the Simpsons and Desperate Housewives, but illegal to download the Daily Show with Jon Stewart (I don't have Cable right now). So be it. But don't paint all of bittorrent with the "illegal" brush -- like any technology, from a hammer to a gun to a computer, it's all in how you use it.
posted by zpousman at 10:29 AM on December 19, 2004


allofmp3 has songs has 2 cents per mb.

Was looking at this the other day. Has anyone tried it?
posted by Armitage Shanks at 10:33 AM on December 19, 2004


Has anyone tried [allofmp3]?

No, because it's not legal here.
posted by oaf at 10:37 AM on December 19, 2004


also, if you haven't read it, piratebays legal threat section is worth a laugh.

Yahr! Comedy gold, matey!
posted by keswick at 10:46 AM on December 19, 2004


Why is allofmp3 not legal here?
I've read up on it at a few places now (discussed on BoingBoing, and Gizmodo is a big advocate), and everyone seems to think that since they (supposedly) have all their "papers" in order, the end user is covered.
(BTW: I haven't used it and found it to be fine at all ).
posted by numlok at 10:47 AM on December 19, 2004


I meant to say... "I [cough] haven't used it [cough] and found it to be fine at all". Ahem...
posted by numlok at 10:48 AM on December 19, 2004


It boggles my mind that the TV companies haven't yet figured out that they could release their shows onto the BT networks, embed adverts, then sit back and let other people pay for the data distribution.

i thought the exact same thing the other day. plus, it's easier to get better viewing statistics. win-win all around, really.

not to worry, plenty of other places to get your hdtv stuff.

yeah, i use allofmp3, great service & interface.
posted by blendor at 10:49 AM on December 19, 2004


Allofmp3.com is a great service, of highly dubious legality (but they spin a good story about it being legal in Russia...hmmm...) but wonderful convinience. It was better when you could load your account from Paypal (no giving your credit card details out) but they seem to have stopped that - fees too high I guess. They have a couple of alternatives up there now webmoney or yandex.money which I haven't heard of...but I guess work the same.
posted by djn1976 at 10:52 AM on December 19, 2004


.
posted by WolfDaddy at 10:52 AM on December 19, 2004


numlok: Do a mefi-domain search at google for allofmp3. It's been discussed before a few times on the Blue and the Green.
posted by Gyan at 10:53 AM on December 19, 2004


At the risk of degenerating into a discussion about IP if it hasn't already, zpousman, actually, just a guess here (IANAL)...but I'm not convinced that actually gives you any rights, per se, to download those shows. Television is a distribution medium, not a rights transferral medium.

Put another way, networks that broadcast shows are given the right to broadcast, not the the right of ownership. Which means that they can only broadcast under the conditions that the owner of the material allows them. Every broadcast is subject to these conditions and usually one of these conditions is that the broadcaster pays the owner.

How this applies to your positions is that I would think torrenting The Simpsons and Desperate Housewives is just as illegal as The Daily Show, i.e. torrenting is broadcasting. The only cases where torrenting material would be legal is (a) if you have ownership of the material or (b) the owner says it's okay. Otherwise, it's still "pirating" under the generally applied definition of the word.
posted by RockCorpse at 10:53 AM on December 19, 2004


god I hope uk nova stays around long enough for me to see the new dr. who.
posted by akmonday at 10:57 AM on December 19, 2004


That's not viable if you want the artists and songwriters (the latter get 8¢ of every song sold, or something like that) to get paid, and if you want to use your credit card—unless you want to have a minimum on the number of songs you pay for at once.

Two observations:

1. A half a percent of one hundred million is a lot better than 8 percent of 10,000. Or whatever the ratio is.

2. There are many different ways to pay for minute stuff like this - the US is obsessed with credit card transactions that often are a bad fit for some models. Other countries use a blend of different systems. Prepaid cards. Monthly subs. SMS reverse charging. Telco/utility billing. Affiliate clicks. Adverts. Or the AllOfMP3 model - pay-per-MB.
posted by meehawl at 11:07 AM on December 19, 2004


of course, there are plenty of legal torrents to download....all kinds of open source apps use bittorrent as a medium of exchange (since it is such a robust client) so as previously mentioned, you cant say all bittorrent is illegal.
posted by gren at 11:07 AM on December 19, 2004


Time to focus entirely on the legal torrents at etree, easytree, and sharingthegroove.org.
posted by muckster at 11:09 AM on December 19, 2004


i suppose a mention of guide.hardcoretorrents.com is in order (NSFW probably)
posted by puke & cry at 11:17 AM on December 19, 2004


Gren: Thanks!
Man, that was a circuitous route.
Where I ended up (after bouncing through many different links, sites, and threads) is here, which says allofmp3.com is legal (in the US and all other nations).
While this was said in many of the other threads I visited, this site actually provides the most concrete information I've seen regarding the issue (most other discussions are anecdotal).
Interesting.
/threadjack (sorry!)
posted by numlok at 11:18 AM on December 19, 2004


lokitorrent may be down but their sister site mufftorrent is still up.

Once again the porn industry leads the way.
posted by Mick at 11:21 AM on December 19, 2004


What are the chances of Suprnova being reborn as exeem? I can't get to the link.
posted by TetrisKid at 11:24 AM on December 19, 2004



i find it interesting that "the music industry" really doesn't consist of musicians, but rather promoters, distributors, sellers and pr flaks.


Kind of like the subordinant role of doctors in the "medical industry," eh?

Our society is SO choking itself to death.
posted by rushmc at 11:38 AM on December 19, 2004


1. Why should I have to adjust my life around the unreasonable scheduling grids of television networks? Sunday nights at 9 PM? I think not. I have a life to lead. Time-shifting has been around for more than two decades now and it seems that the Powers that Be still don't understand the concept.

2. What is different from downloading a BitTorrent and recording an episode, playing it back later, and fast forwarding through the commercials? (Same goes for TiVo.)

3. If the successful sales of the Seinfeld DVD sets are any indication, people will still buy television that they have seen over and over again, ad nauseum. It's the nature of the medium. (And for DVDs which involve commentaries or even subtitles, it's more of a pain in the ass to collect the assorted files through a BitTorrent stream. Hence, DVD still wins.)

4. Word of mouth. Does it not make sense to allow postiive buzz on a television series to spread through the Net by allowing more people to watch it through a BitTorrent stream? This allows BitTorrent geeks to disseminate their kudos to others, causing buzz to spread through the most effective of marketing techniques.

5. BitTorrent users, for the most part, don't have money. So where's the profit in going after them? Factor in attorney billable hours and you're dealing, most likely, with an in-house cost that clearly outweighs the costs that a defendant will end up settling for (say, a "crippling" amount like $250,000). If you really want to talk about the bottom line, does it not make sense to spend less on the legal department and more on generating revenue?
posted by ed at 11:38 AM on December 19, 2004


Addendum to Point 5: If this is a question of decreasing DVD sales, where's the evidence that BitTorrent is directly tied to this?
posted by ed at 11:41 AM on December 19, 2004


And for DVDs which involve commentaries or even subtitles, it's more of a pain in the ass to collect the assorted files through a BitTorrent stream. Hence, DVD still wins.

Actually, if you torrent an iso of a DVD, all you have to do is mount it with Alcohol/DaemonTools/the like, and it's just like having put the DVD in your drive. Only one file, too.
posted by Bugbread at 11:43 AM on December 19, 2004 [1 favorite]


muckster, i was just about to ask, what's up with sharingthegroove? the site seems to have been down for a few days. this was a great place to get mostly legal recordings of live shows from a wide variety of bands and musicians.
posted by ism at 11:46 AM on December 19, 2004


yeah, i use allofmp3, great service & interface.

Great for the customer, not the artist, who doesn't see a dime.
posted by You Should See the Other Guy at 11:52 AM on December 19, 2004


It boggles my mind that the TV companies haven't yet figured out that they could release their shows onto the BT networks, embed adverts, then sit back and let other people pay for the data distribution.

that would never work. hint: you have to think globally.
posted by canned polar bear at 11:56 AM on December 19, 2004


Seems like most other sites choking on the extra traffic.

I've had a torrent open for a few days that I found on suprnova. I've notice the speed and number of peers go way down. Coincidence, or did this tank the trackers too?
posted by clubfoote at 11:58 AM on December 19, 2004


What is different from downloading a BitTorrent and recording an episode, playing it back later, and fast forwarding through the commercials?

When you download via BitTorrent, you're also distributing to other people and thereby violating the law. An easy gotcha.
posted by oaf at 11:59 AM on December 19, 2004


but their sister site mufftorrent is still up

I must say "Sharing the Seed" is way more catchy a tagline than "Weblog As Conversation"
posted by matteo at 12:04 PM on December 19, 2004


I'm not a huge fan of the current situation, direction or cast of characters around content IP.

However, all the breathless screeching about how the current system is outdated and doomed and how the geeks and their toys will send the industry the way of the buggie whip makers, seems less like wishful thinking and more like full scale delusions.

The music, tv, and movie industry seem to be putting the genie back in the bottle just fine, thank you.
posted by PissOnYourParade at 12:18 PM on December 19, 2004


music, tv, and movie industry seem to be putting the genie back in the bottle just fine, thank you.

Really? Shutting down p2p services has proven, time and again, more akin to battling a hydra. Kill one and ten take its place. We are watching natural selection in action, and it's a war of descent through modification that can only be won by the decentralised multitudes.
posted by meehawl at 12:27 PM on December 19, 2004


that would never work. hint: you have to think globally.

I'm aware of the current regional restrictions on content licensing and distribution.

I think these are artifacts of previous distribution arrangements and national economic structures that are becoming increasingly quaint and hybridised.

Consider the EU. The iTMS in the UK is being investigated for setting different prices and availabilities for tracks to people in different EU member states. In this case, the old record licensing regulations will probably be found to be in contravention of EU law.

There are technological solutions to the problem of localising advertising content within a global distribution framework. This problem has been solved for the web with local cache servers and suchlike. A similar solution could solve this for p2p media distribution as well. I think the cost savings from encouraging the masses to shoulder the burden and cost of reproducing and distributing your content, "pushing the costs to the edge", coud pay for some moderate capital investment in such local beacon technologies.
posted by meehawl at 12:33 PM on December 19, 2004


no one mentioned direct connect, do you guys use this?
posted by nearo at 12:48 PM on December 19, 2004


.
posted by neckro23 at 12:57 PM on December 19, 2004


Grrr.... now I have to leave my laptop at home and connected for the next 10 days, praying that the This American Life torrent holds-out till I can finish it.
posted by nathan_teske at 1:08 PM on December 19, 2004


yeah, i use allofmp3, great service & interface.

Great for the customer, not the artist, who doesn't see a dime.


except that i buy vinyl. allofmp3 and other download services help me "convert" my vinyl to mp3. i've tried actually converting vinyl-mp3; it's difficult and time-consuming. digital is for convenience, analog is for enjoyment. the only thing besides convenience that's better about digital is the marketing (this goes for other mediums besides music, too).
posted by blendor at 1:10 PM on December 19, 2004


&*^%$%$!!! MPAA!!! *@%$#RIAA!!!!

seethes
posted by squeak at 2:05 PM on December 19, 2004


nathan_teske: You realize you can stream This American Life directly from here, don't you?

Also, I've heard there are ways to save a streamed file for playback, if that's what you need.
posted by SteveInMaine at 2:05 PM on December 19, 2004


This kills me - damn, I loved Suprnova. I will wear my Suprnova shirt proudly!
posted by newfers at 2:18 PM on December 19, 2004


SteveInMaine - Yeah I know I can, butthose are all RealMedia files whereas the torrent is all nice and MP3'd. Much easier to drop onto my iPod
posted by nathan_teske at 2:26 PM on December 19, 2004


Let me be the first to congratulate the RIAA and the MPAA for chopping a head off the hydra. Surely now we will all stop downloading.
posted by sien at 2:26 PM on December 19, 2004


perhaps it's time for mefi waste?
posted by muckster at 2:44 PM on December 19, 2004


digital is for convenience, analog is for enjoyment.

I use digital for both, because the quality on digital is far higher.
posted by oaf at 2:58 PM on December 19, 2004


good idea muckster. we should do this.
posted by puke & cry at 3:09 PM on December 19, 2004


It's interesting that bi-torrent [dot] com appears to be up, even though it claims to be a SuprNova mirror...
posted by anarcation at 3:16 PM on December 19, 2004


As soon as I heard about their plans for eXeem a few months ago, I've my computer downloading non-stop (with the exception of a couple of re-boots) downloading, downloading, downloading. Glad I was able to get few hundred gigs before they shut the door.

But as it has been pointed out, SuprNova was just a central repository for other trackers, many of which are still online. The groups that do the 0-day releases aren't going to stop because the trackers are down, they'll just move to other tried-and-true methods of distribution like IRC or USENET. Convenience goes down a bit, but life will go on.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 3:17 PM on December 19, 2004


[Currently downloading: Repo Man]
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 3:18 PM on December 19, 2004


Surely now we will all stop downloading.

Too right, mate! As history shows, shutting down websites associated with filesharing always kills file sharing dead! All hail our copyright-protection overlords!

Still, this sucks. Suprnova was a major time-saver.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 3:21 PM on December 19, 2004


[Currently downloading: Repo Man]

"Look at that. Ordinary fuckin' people. I hate 'em."
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 3:22 PM on December 19, 2004


I've...ahem...got a friend who's got a localized Suprnova Lite mirror as of, ummmm, 12/19 00:00:05 CST. I could probably provide an archive if need be.
posted by Samizdata at 3:43 PM on December 19, 2004


This is a sad fucking day indeed.

muckster - good idea with the waste. Maybe put it as a feature request in MeTa? To officialise it? Maybe we need a special 'alternates to SuprNova' thread, to tide us over until someone fills in the power vacuum?

Love Piratebay's legal threats section...wish I read Swedish though.

Samizdata - yes, yes, and yes. If not you, surely others are doing this.
posted by cosmonik at 3:47 PM on December 19, 2004


digital is for convenience, analog is for enjoyment.

I use digital for both, because the quality on digital is far higher.


i can only answer that with it's insane, this guy's taint.
posted by blendor at 3:48 PM on December 19, 2004


In other news (pun intended), alt.binaires.* is still up and running.
posted by shepd at 3:50 PM on December 19, 2004


alt.binaries, even.
posted by shepd at 3:50 PM on December 19, 2004


Hmm. There seems to be a purge on. tvtorrents just died, as did demonoid.

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2004/12/14/finnish_police_raid_bittorrent_site/

I think lots are shutting down just to lay low for a bit.
posted by Mossy at 4:17 PM on December 19, 2004


And herein lies the fundamental problem with our "automatic all rights reserved" copyright system (Apologies to those wanting to avoid a debate on IP, but this is Big-Societal stuff)

I am becoming more and more convinced that the artificially imposed scarcity of ideas, originally intended to introduce market forces to stimulate creation, is actually slowing the world economy. To illustrate: Imagine a world where every website came with a 99c entry fee. We have become so enamored with the free flow of information that the 'net has brought, that the idea seems ridiculous. BUT under the Bern treaty, and moreso under the Geneva WIPO treaty (which begat the hated DMCA in the states) authors have every right to demand one, and every right to expect the state to enforce their business model. Debating how high we should set the barrier is allowing ourselves to be framed in the status quo, instead of recognizing the radical opportunity the internet presents us.

Since I am not very eloquent myself, I will rely on the free flow of Google links to present [pdf] arguments for why intellectual property ought to belong to the commons
posted by Popular Ethics at 4:48 PM on December 19, 2004


Blendor-> "except that i buy vinyl. allofmp3 and other download services help me "convert" my vinyl to mp3. i've tried actually converting vinyl-mp3; it's difficult and time-consuming."

Vinyl is the reason that only 1/2 of my mp3s are unlicensed. $.25 for an entire album (or 2 on Wednesdays) at a local thrift shop is a good thing.
posted by The Cardinal at 4:49 PM on December 19, 2004


This truly sucks. I'm in China and have no other way to keep up with American TV in a timely manner. The students love the NBA highlights and Unwrapped from The Food Network. Me? I'll miss The Amazing Race.

This is tragedy.
posted by geekyguy at 4:50 PM on December 19, 2004


Look at that. Ordinary fuckin' people. I hate 'em.

Re: SuprNova -- "All free? Free my ass. What are you, a fuckin' commie? Huh?"
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 4:57 PM on December 19, 2004


odinsdream: I would have emailed you, but there's no address in your profile.

1. keys should be given out to mefiers only, so private exchange is the only way to go.

2. you need a DNS service set up and port forwarding for 1337 to have people connect to you (if i'm reading everything right.)

either way, there should be a meta post about it. shoot me an email to discuss this more. it's in the profile.
posted by puke & cry at 4:58 PM on December 19, 2004


Oh, and apparently tvtorrents is just experiencing some DNS problems, and is not shutting down. At least, that's what I heard.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 4:59 PM on December 19, 2004


I'll have something for downloading in a bit. I don't have the hugest pipe here, so let me think of something...
posted by Samizdata at 5:24 PM on December 19, 2004


The file sharing thing is fascinating. It is simply amazing to watch human nature at work... otherwise completely law-abiding and moral people will twist themselves into knots rationalizing what is, at base, taking money out of the pockets of other people. Hey don't get me wrong... I'm no saint.

But make no bones about it: most of the people, including people in this thread, who heavily use Bittorrent are using it for unethical purposes. Rationalize all you want, that's the bottom line.
posted by Justinian at 5:25 PM on December 19, 2004


If I'm reading the WASTE page right there's no client for Linux or *BSD?
posted by kenko at 5:30 PM on December 19, 2004


There seems to be a server for linux, no client.
posted by Mossy at 5:36 PM on December 19, 2004


i still havent figured out how buying used cds or promo copies that say "not for sale" is kosher and moral but downloading from suprnova et al is not.

apparently it's legal if a record store gets to turn a profit even if the artist doesnt make a dime?
posted by tsarfan at 5:59 PM on December 19, 2004


lokitorrent, demonoid, tvtorrent...I'm halfway to shouting 'The sky is falling in!'.

I hope you're right, Civ_Dis, and that they're just laying low. It's happened before to the filesharing community, and this is the first real test of the resilience of torrent tech.
posted by cosmonik at 6:07 PM on December 19, 2004


File sharing is a beautiful example of economics in action. When arbitrary prices are set for goods which don't reflect their real value, the market adapts. Right and wrong are in your mind, and people who are allegedly 'stealing' don't seem to be stricken with guilt. Modern copyright law is so perverted to benefit of the now-defunct distributors, it's almost comical to hear them scream as the channels of distribution correct themselves to adjust to current tochnology.

I enjoy watching the market adapt to changes like this one. It will be interesting to see where it will go next. Freenet, anyone? Exeem seemed to be a major new step, but even if it doesn't pan out a similar technology will spring up to keep things going. It's Adam Smith's 'invisible hand' in action.
posted by mullingitover at 6:28 PM on December 19, 2004


otherwise completely law-abiding and moral people will twist themselves into knots rationalizing what is, at base, taking money out of the pockets of other people

No. Taking money out of someone's pocket deprives them of money. Copying and distributing something deprives them of nothing but "potential" revenues. As a study has already indicated, most of these people wouldn't have been buyers anyway. Nothing is being stolen. This is copyright violation, not theft. They are different. Get it straight and stop with the FUD.

Freenet, anyone?

No thanks.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 6:58 PM on December 19, 2004


Count me in for a mefi W.A.S.T.E. I'll email puke & cry.
posted by Keyser Soze at 7:01 PM on December 19, 2004


C_D - Both "copyright infringement" and "theft" are social constructs. If society decides that copyright infringement is a form of theft, than it is. If society decides that it is not a form of theft, than it is not. That's how social constructs work. Infringement is not intrinsically either theft or not-theft as you would have it. The question is still up in the air; I gather you are strongly on the side of not-theft. But your position is not a law of nature, it is simply your preferred social construct.

Secondly, even if copyright infringement is not exactly equivalent to theft, that does not make it ethical. I am on your side of the theft/not theft debate. It is defintely not the same as breaking a window and stealing a pie. But it is still unethical. Simply saying "it isn't theft" does not make it ethical as even cursory thought will show. Plenty of things which are not theft are never the less unethical.

Neither is this a form of "civil disobedience" as some people claim. Civil disobedience is when you publically break a law in order to publically suffer the consequences and shame the government. Clearly not the case here.
posted by Justinian at 7:13 PM on December 19, 2004


i beg to differ. civil disobedience is precisely what the words denote: disobedience carried out in a civil manner.
posted by quonsar at 7:40 PM on December 19, 2004


Lokitorrent is just down for upgrades, I think. I hadn't even heard of it up to now, but that's what it says on the site.
posted by abcde at 7:45 PM on December 19, 2004


muckster, i was just about to ask, what's up with sharingthegroove? the site seems to have been down for a few days. this was a great place to get mostly legal recordings of live shows from a wide variety of bands and musicians.

sharingthegroove shut down a few months ago. As I understand it, the guy who ran it had a minor freakout and just stopped paying the bills. Refugees from the meltdown have gathered here and here. Neither site quite matches the groove in its prime. Might take some time to build up a user base.
posted by felix betachat at 7:54 PM on December 19, 2004


A lot of people are still missing the point of this debate and using useless words like "ethical" and "theft" and "rights". Just follow the money trail.

I love your latest song. I offer to rave about it to four friends if you let me have it for free. Good deal or not?

Noone really knows for sure yet. What is known is that many shareware authors are millionaires that wouldn't otherwise be if it wasn't for this word-of-mouth effect.

If the above has any semblance of truth why aren't the RIAA and MPAA more enthusiastic about internet-style business models? Because their member companies own the distribution channels which the internet eradicates the need for and they stand to lose a large amount of profit as a result.

Got it?
posted by DirtyCreature at 8:15 PM on December 19, 2004


For those of you looking for your weekly fix of television, try www.the-realworld.de. It's ed2k, so it's often not as fast as bittorrent, but on the flip side you can still download stuff that was first put up months ago (and of course there's even less centralisation in ed2k).
posted by fvw at 8:33 PM on December 19, 2004


Please, once again, us geeks live in a world of our own.

They don't need to stop everyone from filesharing. They just need to stop most people.

I really think the music industry has done a good job of it. While all my geek friends still find some way (soulseek, newsgroups, etc) - the vast majority of the run of the mill people I know have been either scared off by the lawsuits or frustrated with the technical complexity.

I think the strategy they are pursuing of making the free stuff harder (but not impossible) while slowing making the pay stuff actually useful will serve them (but not us) well. We'll see if the movie and tv industry follows suit on this successful strategy.

For the RIAA, MPAA people, this is a marathon, not a sprint. Pissed off that it costs 99 cents now to download a song, they may try 50 cents a year or two from now. Eventually they will hit the sweet spot.

And all you indignant anti-consumers putting big entertainment on your shit-list, well, as history as shown, hippies grow up and become yuppies with bmw's and "simple living" magazine subscriptions and good little consumer fetishists.
posted by PissOnYourParade at 9:09 PM on December 19, 2004


When was the last time you heard about an ethical record company? Hmm, one that pays it's artists out of the goodness of its collective heart, and would never screw them over on a contract... Of course, these record companies would have never colluded together to keep record prices high, and screw consumers out of their money.

You reap what you sow... Fuck em all.

bi-torrent.com, oink.me.uk, torrent-core.com.
Kazza, Exeem, Direct Connect, Limewire, eDonkey...

It's never going to go away, they can only make dents. It's like trying to get rid of the ocean, one gallon jug at a time.

They don't need to stop everyone from filesharing. They just need to stop most people.

Please, it's going to get easier and more secure. It's a losing battle for these dinosaurs.
posted by SweetJesus at 9:15 PM on December 19, 2004


hippies grow up and become yuppies with bmw's and "simple living" magazine subscriptions and good little consumer fetishists.

And as history has shown, a new realm of hippies lay in wait for the opportunity to prove themselves.

Eventually someone's going to come up with a p2p method that utilizes encryption. At that point, the game is won. The RI/MPAA can't break encryption to prove you're violating copyright, thanks to the oft-abused DMCA. They can't outlaw encryption, because entire sectors of industry already rely on it, and have a lot more muscle than the recording/motion picture industry.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 9:16 PM on December 19, 2004


Is tvtorrents [dot] net down? I tried to go there and the domain and it said "Coming Soon!" Arrrgh!!! Loved that site...
posted by Heminator at 9:53 PM on December 19, 2004


It is defintely not the same as breaking a window and stealing a pie. But it is still unethical.

Only if you base your ethics on the current social structure, which, fortunately, not everyone is willing to do.
posted by rushmc at 10:08 PM on December 19, 2004


Okay...

I'll have a torrent and tracker set up locally here by about 06:00 CST (give or take)...

And I am in for some hot and steamy MeFi WASTEanation...
posted by Samizdata at 10:11 PM on December 19, 2004


Eventually someone's going to come up with a p2p method that utilizes encryption. At that point, the game is won.

Well, no. At some point your client has to deliver unencrypted data to the end user or it's useless. No matter how much encryption you slather on top, the RIAA or MPAA simply needs the same client software as anyone else to determine what you have and to be able to download it so they know it's real, and they just need a simple network monitor app and a subpoena to determine who they're downloading from.
posted by kindall at 10:31 PM on December 19, 2004


aack !
posted by t r a c y at 10:32 PM on December 19, 2004


I'm in for MeFi waste, too. Anyone volunteering to set up the mailing list?
posted by bshort at 10:50 PM on December 19, 2004


May I suggest the wiki, or is that too public?
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 11:06 PM on December 19, 2004


If you get music for free that doesn't deprive anyone else of that music and you wouldn't have bought that music anyway, is that wrong? It wasn't as though I was going to spend hundreds at iTunes or on $12 CDs. I only download stuff because I can get it for free. I'm not going to buy "MacArthur Park", e.g., but if it's free, what the hell, I'll download it.

I'm not sure that to use MeFi to arrange the (perhaps) illegal sharing of files is such a good idea or that Matt would approve. But, um, include me in.
posted by TimeFactor at 11:25 PM on December 19, 2004


Supernovas explode.
posted by lorbus at 11:36 PM on December 19, 2004


I'm not sure that to use MeFi to arrange the (perhaps) illegal sharing of files is such a good idea or that Matt would approve. But, um, include me in.

I'd like to join too.
posted by squeak at 11:56 PM on December 19, 2004


The Unofficial SuprNova.org Closure FAQ

(Also, I meant the wiki to organize a WASTE network, in case that was unclear.)
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 1:10 AM on December 20, 2004


Damn, I'm gonna miss suprnova, but I haven't been using it that much anyway since the RIAA/MPAA have been going after bittorrent.

Instead, I've been downloading MST3K episodes from MySpleen, since the MST3K folks have always encouraged sharing episodes anyway.

(If you click on the myspleen link ignore the message that says they are closing, they just decided to get a good laugh by making everyone freak out when the visited the site today)

Anyway, waste sounds good, sign me up :)
posted by furiousxgeorge at 2:15 AM on December 20, 2004


Yeah, I'm a 'Spleener, too, solely for the MST3K. I feel safe doing it because the Brains don't mind - and it's my way of helping keep the show alive.

(I'm interested in a MeFi share too. Count me in!)
posted by ruddhist at 4:40 AM on December 20, 2004


I wanna get Wasted too. Someone notify signal. He'll notify me.
posted by Gyan at 5:18 AM on December 20, 2004


If WASTE is going to be used, it might be wise to set up some guidelines, such as, will non-mefites be allowed in, and if not, finding a secure place to post public keys. Also, making sure that everyone sets their client to download one file from one user at a time, etc.

WASTE is an awesome thing when done right, but the network that I am on now has about 20 people on a good day, and I've never seen it done with more than that, and wonder how the mesh would hold up with so many users. It's worth a shot, though.
posted by adampsyche at 7:41 AM on December 20, 2004


No go on the tracker. My router is too lame. (grin)

Anyone have some space to mirror a 1.1 mb RAR file?

Sorry for the delay. It needed a bit of redacting.
posted by Samizdata at 8:50 AM on December 20, 2004


Will someone explain WASTE for the uninitiated? I actually have a copy on my hard drive, but I have no idea what it does.
posted by Justinian at 8:52 AM on December 20, 2004


Waste is essentially an encrypted "friends only" style peer to peer program.

In order to join a WASTE group you have to share your encryption key with the other people you are planning to fileshare with. This allows one to build a tiny network of clients that is invitation only.

That hopefully clear things up?
posted by Samizdata at 8:55 AM on December 20, 2004


Hey, sign me up for the MeFi Wastoids, too. I got lots of good stuff (not updated in about 2 months, so add another 300 gigs to that; plus another terabyte or so in albums.)
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 9:10 AM on December 20, 2004


Holy hell, C_D.
posted by kenko at 9:15 AM on December 20, 2004


This WASTE sounds interesting, but I'm unclear about what the page explains -- does it run properly on OS X?
posted by aaronetc at 10:44 AM on December 20, 2004


There are already some open-source anonymous and encrypted networks in early development. MUTE is even available for windows, linux, OS X and FreeBSD. And the person that develops it has some interesting thoughts on making money from software "post-copyright". I don't really watch windows-only software, so I'm sure there are others, too. And I'd bet that the recent events will do nothing but help push them along.

Although WASTE has some limited support for linux, OS X, and FreeBSD, AOL pulled it and the licensing is under some dispute. Via also released a custom client called Padlock SL loosely based on the WASTE source which was later removed, presumably due to copyright issues.
posted by nTeleKy at 10:44 AM on December 20, 2004


How about this:

I'll set up a secure website for sharing of public keys. Registration is only open to MeFites. Email the address in my profile with your MeFi username / public key.

I'll email you back with a username / password you can use.
posted by bshort at 11:10 AM on December 20, 2004


"Last night, she might have wondered what undergrounds apart from the couple she knew of communicated by WASTE system. By sunrise she could legitimately ask what undergrounds didn't... It was not an act of treason, nor possibly even of defiance. But it was a calculated withdrawal, from the life of the Republic, from its machinery. Whatever else was being denied them out of hate, indifference to the power of their vote, loopholes, simple ignorance, this withdrawal was their own, unpublicized, private. Since they could not have withdrawn into a vacuum (could they?), there had to exist the separate, silent, unsuspected world."

I'm in.
posted by gd779 at 11:12 AM on December 20, 2004


uhoh. tvtorrents.net now shows a "parked" page from the host.
posted by crunchland at 3:47 PM on December 20, 2004


nm. http://www.tvtorrents.tv/ still seems ok.
posted by crunchland at 3:49 PM on December 20, 2004


Eventually someone's going to come up with a p2p method that utilizes encryption. At that point, the game is won.

Well, no. At some point your client has to deliver unencrypted data to the end user or it's useless. No matter how much encryption you slather on top, the RIAA or MPAA simply needs the same client software as anyone else to determine what you have and to be able to download it so they know it's real, and they just need a simple network monitor app and a subpoena to determine who they're downloading from.


how are you going to know it's real if i haven't encrypted it using your public key?
posted by juv3nal at 4:49 PM on December 20, 2004


Besides, with tools like WASTE, the only unencrypted stream is between the OS and the client. Plus, with schemes like WASTE, without me accepting your encryption key, then you can't join the club, so to speak...
posted by Samizdata at 10:56 PM on December 20, 2004


As an exeem beta tester, I can find nothing to back-up this claim of exeem being halted. All moderators on the still-living forums have been silent since suprnova's downfall, but the forums are indeed alive and well. And the program works too, yes. Better than ever I may add, as we now have no suprnova to turn to, and thus seeding and publishing rates have skyrocketed.

Still, being limited to 5000x2 users at maximum means transfer rates and the torrent database is puny compared to suprnova once offered. Is a public release on the horizon? Nobody knows.
posted by mek at 10:58 PM on December 20, 2004


torrent database is->are. ahem.
posted by mek at 10:59 PM on December 20, 2004


How about this:

I'll set up a secure website for sharing of public keys. Registration is only open to MeFites. Email the address in my profile with your MeFi username / public key.

I'll email you back with a username / password you can use.


Pretty much what I thought would be the way to go.
posted by squeak at 11:44 PM on December 20, 2004


how are you going to know it's real if i haven't encrypted it using your public key?

And how would you know someone works for the MPAA/RIAA so as not to encrypt it with their public key?
posted by kindall at 11:51 PM on December 20, 2004


ok, the forum is up. Email me at the address in my profile and I'll set up an account for you.
posted by bshort at 7:49 AM on December 21, 2004


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