Pirate Bay Founders Launch BayFiles

Aug 31, 2011 6:00 AM PST

LOS ANGELES — In a move echoing the rehabilitation of Napster, two Pirate Bay founders have joined forces to release BayFiles, a “legal” file-sharing website.

Fredrik Neij and Peter Sunde, two Swedish co-founders of the notorious BitTorrent tracker, Pirate Bay, have reportedly formed the Hong Kong-based BayFiles Limited, to  then launch BayFiles (www.bayfiles.com) — a one-click webhosting service, commonly known as a “cyberlocker” — which has some growing advantages over other systems.

“BitTorrent is increasingly throttled or even filtered by ISPs, HTTP usually is not,” Neij told TorrentFreak. “Storage and transfers on BayFiles also preserve users’ privacy.”

Currently featuring three service tiers where files can be easily uploaded and shared, BayFiles offers unregistered users a free hosting account with 250MB of disk space  —while members can upgrade to 500MB; or for more capacity and less waiting, premium members can have 5GB of disk space, for five euros (around $7) monthly, or 45 euros (about $65) annually.

BayFiles says it offers a legal service because it is compliant with the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), which provides a mechanism to report unauthorized uploads of copyrighted material and have them removed.

The company adds it seeks to protect privacy and ensure availability, so that uploaded content is available for instantaneous viewing on any platform, with future plans to enhance the BayFiles service offerings into a more robust and richly featured cloud hosting service.

“Another advantage is that users can be sure that content stays up, which is important for personal backups,” Neij added. “It also guarantees that other personal files such as your MP3 collection are always accessible, so users are able to stream it live to any device.”

Once a file is uploaded, users are provided with a direct URL, as well as an HTML formatted link, plus a BB-encoded link for easy forum insertion. Unlike the BitTorrent scheme used by The Pirate Bay, however, only those with access to the link will be able to view or download these uploaded files.

“I suspect what they’re concentrating on is the idea that if it can be shown that they’re infringing or facilitating the infringement of an identifiable copyright work, they will comply with the requirement to notice and take down in time,” Attorney Susan Hall told BBC News. “But if in fact if you’re facilitating other people to infringe copyright, that’s something people will have difficulties bringing procedures about.”

For next generation adult marketers, BayFiles presents a variety of opportunities for serving content and generating traffic; and may find a place in many operators’ tool kits.

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