I’ve turned into a NPR reporter reporter today.
NPR just aired a piece on bittorrent including interviews with Bram Cohen (who we met at FOO Camp) and Larry Lessig (Bram wrote it; Larry defends it) and a more or less nameless Motion picture operative (it promotes evil) followed by a more or less nameless BBC guy (who loves it). Examples of legal use of bittorrent abound in the story — most all of them ibiblio does. Books (check), CDs by bands that agree to share (check), radio shows (check), show from the Dead etc (check), Linux distros (check). ibiblio didn’t get mentioned tho. bittorrent is one of the largest consumers of internet bandwidth (supposedly).
You can find the story near the end of this page.
The NPR site gives us a completely misleading and completely inane headline:
File-Sharing Program Could Boost Illegal Movie Trading
BitTorrent, the current hot program for sharing files on the Internet, combines the computing power of several file sharers to ease the transfer of large files — such as movies. Is it the next phase in the arms race between the entertainment industry and file sharers, or the future of legal distribution? Hear Joel Rose of member station WHYY.
[I write a lot about bittorrent in the context of etree.org in the upcoming Library Trends journal — The Commercialized Web: Challenges for Libraries and Democracy, Edited by Bettina Fabos, 53(4), Spring 2005]