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BitTorrent's Bundle paywall is part Kickstarter, part iTunes

Ian Paul | July 15, 2014
BitTorrent Inc. has a new plan to monetize file sharing with a project that's one part Kickstarter and one part iTunes. The company behind the BitTorrent peer-to-peer file-sharing protocol recently shared more information on its plan to create a "pay gate" for its BitTorrent Bundle project. BitTorrent first told us of its pay gate plans in June.

It's not clear if BitTorrent plans to combat piracy by adding DRM to any of its downloads. We've asked the company to clarify.

But BitTorrent's ultimate goal may not be to stamp out or even combat piracy. Instead, the aim appears to be providing a viable alternative to illegal downloads using the same technology that is virtually synonymous with online piracy.

BitTorrent's latest plan to turn files shared via BitTorrent into a money making enterprise follows an earlier effort from February 2007 when BitTorrent launched the BitTorrent Entertainment Network.

Designed to compete with Amazon and iTunes, BEN debuted with more than 5,000 movies, TV Shows, PC games, and music available for purchase from 35 major entertainment companies. Despite the hope that BEN might be a turning point for BitTorrent downloads, the company shut down the effort in late 2008, citing poor profitability.


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