Torrents became popular with legal issues surrounding two popular websites, Napster and ThePirateBay. The issues arise because of copyright infringement. Millions of people around the world were using torrents to upload, download and share content of all forms on the internet. Thousands of people still use these websites, but it is not inherently illegal. BitTorrent is one of the most prevalent and longest running torrent file trackers - launched first in 2001. BitTorrent itself is the name for the underlying protocol that allows torrents to function, a website, and the company that maintains, operates and further develops the associated the systems.
In June of this year TRON acquired BitTorrent Inc., which was formed in 2004, and still operates out of San Francisco, CA, U.S.A. as a private company with over 100 employees. The company will now be launching their own cryprocurrency to facilitate advanced payment features in their products and services based on the TRON network protocol. The BitTorrent Token (BTT) will open the door for introducing cryptocurrencies to their over 100 million userbase. run on the tron protocol, developed by Tron, which acquired BitTorrent in June of last year. The file-sharing software company claims to have 100 million users.
“In one giant leap, we can introduce blockchain to hundreds of millions of users around the world and empower a new generation of content creators with the tools to distribute their content directly to others on the web.” - Justin Sun, founder of Tron and CEO
Similarities to Bitcoin
This partnership runs much deeper than just expanding a user base or marketing efforts. The underlying internet protocols which allow torrents to function have many similarities to the decentralized networks of cryptocurrencies. In the same way that the processing power for Bitcoin transactions are distributed amongst miners and the ledger that keeps track of it all is distributed amongst Bitcoin wallet users who run a full node.
The original legal issues that brought torrents to the public awareness stemmed from this same decentralized infrastructure. In order for torrents to work, users source content by accessing pieces of it from a decentralized network. When this content would create copyright infringement, it’s difficult to place blame on any single party. The data for the entire file was not held by any single party, and because of the decentralized protocol, no single entity was responsible for exchanging the data for the file either.
In this way, the advantages over a traditional centralized network are that it can work effectively over networks with lower bandwidth. Several basic computers can replace big, expensive servers while efficiently distributing files to many recipients. Lower bandwidth usage helps to prevent large spikes in internet traffic in a given area as well. This keeps internet speeds higher for all users, whether using BitTorrent protocol or not. As another similarity in features used between cryptocurrencies and torrents, many torrent services now have integrated encryption techniques, just like the encryption that allows.
By: BGN Editorial Staff