One of the grand dreams associated with the emergence of the internet involves the facilitation of media-distribution. Fantasies about the diminishing power of real-world distributors are experienced worldwide as online distribution models gain prominence. Nowhere is this effect more obvious than the music industry. Mega labels, indie labels and all kinds of artists have seen their worlds turned inside out. But one hurdle which remains in the path of individuals and smaller media organizations is the cost of bandwith. For example, if you want to host a radio show with a large viewership (think more than 3 people) or if you want to let people download your music you either pay for the bandwidth or get it hosted temporarily via sites like yousendit or myspace. That is, until now, I hope. BitTorrent, supposedly the most used file-sharing program in the world which accounts for somewhere upwards of 30% of all internet traffic, has released an updated beta version of their software which allows ANYONE with a computer and internet connection to create a .torrent file. What this means is that anyone can share media of significant size at practically no cost. As a test we decided to dig in our pathetic vaults and find something to share. After vetoing suggestions to release the bigfoot video we recorded in Washington last year we decided to share one of our favorite videos which we feel didn’t get enough play – MF Doom’s Dead Bent, directed by Piston Honda. This video is near-dvd quality (48MBs) and should be playable by the latest version of Windows Media Player, but if that doesn’t work try Videolan. Please bare with us as this is our first time trying to host a .torrent file. Please keep in mind, the more people downloading the file at once the more bandwidth available for everyone so help spread the word if you can. Hopefully it works, here goes. download bittorent, download .torrent file

BitTorrent Goes Trackerless: Publishing with BitTorrent gets

As part of our ongoing efforts to make publishing files on the Web painless and disruptively cheap, BitTorrent has released a ‘trackerless’ version of BitTorrent in a new release.

Suppose you bought a television station, you could broadcast your progamming to everyone in a 50 mile radius. Now suppose the population of your town tripled. How much more does it cost you to broadcast to 3 times as many people? Nothing. The same is not true of the Web. If you own a website and you publish your latest video on it, as popularity increases, so does your bandwidth bill! Sometimes by a lot! However, thanks to BitTorrent the website owner gets almost near-broadcast economics on the web by harnessing the unused upstream bandwidth of his/her users.

In prior versions of BitTorrent, publishing was a 3 step process. You would:
Create a “.torrent” file — a summary of your file which you can put on your blog or website
Create a “tracker” for that file on your webserver so that your downloaders can find each other
Create a “seed” copy of your download so that your first downloader has a place to download from

Many of you have blogs and websites, but dont have the resources to set up a tracker. In the new version, we’ve created an optional ‘trackerless’ method of publication. Anyone with a website and an Internet connection can host a BitTorrent download! While it is called trackerless, in practice it makes every client a lightweight tracker. A clever protocol, based on a Kademlia distributed hash table or “DHT”, allows clients to efficiently store and retrieve contact information for peers in a torrent.

When generating a torrent, you can choose to utilize the trackerless system or a traditional dedicated tracker. A dedicated tracker allows you to collect statistics about downloads and gives you a measure of control over the reliability of downloads. The trackerless system makes no guarantees to reliability but requires no resources of the publisher. The trackerless system is not consulted when downloading a traditionally tracked torrent.

Although still in Beta release, the trackerless version of BitTorrent, and the latest production version are available at