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Tuesday, March 20, 2007

/* begin geekfest */

A friend of ours is trying to download a certain movie it is impossible to obtain on DVD. And the torrents are misbehaving something fierce. He is using two Bittorrent clients on two computers, but though they are on the same torrent, they don't see the same number of peers and seeders. Nor do they even see each other. One has downloaded 600+ MB, the other only 300 although it has been at it twice as long. Both are set for high upload rates, but they're not uploading anywhere near the ADSL limit, so it's not a question of jammed pipes.

Moreover, when one stops the torrent because it sees 0 seeds and 0 peers, and then restarts it, sometimes the client finds a seeder that it didn't see before.

Any experts on torrents out there who can suggest what might be wrong and how to fix?

/* end geekfest */

Labels:

7 Comments:

I'm not an expert, but I use BT regularly.

Each computer may be working on the same torrent, but that doesn't mean they're connecting to the same trackers (servers). Each tracker will direct you to a different set of peers.

The client is repeatedly checking with the tracker. If you lose all peers, it will eventually move on to find some. When you quit then restart BT, it automatically connects to a new tracker. That's how it finds new peers.

And remember, the more of a file you have to share, the more you will generally be allowed to download. Those who give more can get more. So download rate has a snowball effect.

I think the best advice for using Bittorrent is to start it then let it run in the background.

By Blogger Tom, at 3:21 PM  

If he is really your friend, he wouldn't be stealing from your brethren.

Wait long enough, and I'm sure he'll steal from you as well.

By Blogger Paul William Tenny, at 7:33 PM  

Legally, you may be right Paul.

But morally, you don't have a leg to stand on. If whomever owns the rights to the movie doesn't want to make it available, what do they expect consumers to do?

I'm not looking to start defending piracy. But if the friend made an attempt to purchase the DVD legally, then we shouldn't suggest that he's going to start stealing things.

If I want ice cream and the store on the corner won't sell me my flavor of choice, however else I choose to obtain it (for free or not) is not stealing from them.
Of course, this isn't meant as a legal argument.

By Blogger Tom, at 3:00 AM  

"If whomever owns the rights to the movie doesn't want to make it available, what do they expect consumers to do?"

Obey the darn law. Just because someone doesn't like a law doesn't give them the right to flaunt it.

The law is rather specific about this. People who create original works are entitled to be the sole arbiter of who can and cannot make copies, that's just the way it is. If not for it, both Alex and I would be digging ditches, and his friend wouldn't have anything to watch and be entertained with at all.

Copyright infringement is wrong legally, and wrong morally, no matter how you rationalize it.

"If I want ice cream and the store on the corner won't sell me my flavor of choice, however else I choose to obtain it (for free or not) is not stealing from them."

Theft strictly speaking is not the same as copyright infringement, but both are still illegal. I don't know about you, but I consider willfully breaking the law to be pretty immoral.

And as I intimated, you get a whole different perspective on copyright infringement once you try to make a living being a writer, only to see *every single person you know* trading the fruits of your follow artists work like stickers.

You ought to get a rather sick feeling in your stomach knowing that those people are getting screwed out of their rightful pay for their work and at any moment, it could be you.

By Blogger Paul William Tenny, at 1:01 PM  

"Obey the darn law. Just because someone doesn't like a law doesn't give them the right to flaunt it."

Legally speaking, I agree with you. But morally and ethically, who cares? To me, what Alex's friend has done is akin to Jay-walking.

"Copyright infringement is wrong legally, and wrong morally, no matter how you rationalize it."

I don't agree.

"Theft strictly speaking is not the same as copyright infringement, but both are still illegal. I don't know about you, but I consider willfully breaking the law to be pretty immoral."

I didn't mean to imply theft. But rather make a metaphor about loss of potential income. If Store A doesn't offer the product I want, I can't possibly buy it from them.
If the DVD is not for sale, Alex's friend can't possibly pay the copyright holder for the rights to a copy.
I accept that this doesn't hold up as a legal argument. It's their right to not make the product available. But to me, outside of court, that doesn't matter. I will watch what I want when I want. I leave it up to them to be concerned with making money off distributing it to me.

Short answer: It is immoral to willfully break the law.
Long answer: it really depends on the law.

"You ought to get a rather sick feeling in your stomach knowing that those people are getting screwed out of their rightful pay for their work and at any moment, it could be you."

But be practical. If they won't make the DVD available, are the creators of that work losing any actual money?

"And as I intimated, you get a whole different perspective on copyright infringement once you try to make a living being a writer, only to see *every single person you know* trading the fruits of your follow artists work like stickers."

I hope to someday make a living being a writer. You're closer to it now, but don't use that as an argument.

By Blogger Tom, at 7:17 PM  

"I don't agree."

That's your prerogative, but it is a rationalization nonetheless.

"But be practical. If they won't make the DVD available, are the creators of that work losing any actual money?"

People make this argument all the time, but it doesn't wash. The right doesn't belong to you no matter what the situation is.

The proper course of action is to lobby Congress to change copyright law so you can access things that aren't being sold anymore, not to declare the law stupid and then proceed to violate it.

And honestly, IP owners have every right in the world to make something and then not sell it to you. Who are you to tell me that I can't write a book, sell two copies, then put that manuscript away for all time just because it suits me to? Who are you to tell me that I have no right to withhold something I own from the public?

What if that increases the value, is that not my right also?

I understand that people are unhappy about this, and I do sympathize, but ultimately it is just not up to you.

"Short answer: It is immoral to willfully break the law.
Long answer: it really depends on the law."


More rationalizing. It is always wrong to violate the law. Just because you want to, and you benefit from it, doesn't make it right.

There never has been and never will be a real justification for copyright infringement, and a work being out of print doesn't change that.

To any and all, if you want something and can't get it: tough. That's life.

By Blogger Paul William Tenny, at 9:40 AM  

"It is always wrong to violate the law." Really?

Is it wrong to sleep with someone you're not married to in those states where there's a law against it?

Is it wrong to sleep with someone of the same sex in most of the South?

Was it wrong to sleep with someone of a different race in most of the South while miscegenation laws were in force?

Is it really wrong to smoke marijuana when it is the only thing that enables you to eat enough food to stay alive because you have nausea from cancer?

Is it wrong to march in protest when the mayor of your town has refused to grant a permit because he doesn't agree with your cause?

Many laws are immoral. Many laws are in place because laws tend to follow the money, not the morality.

By Blogger Alex Epstein, at 10:02 AM  

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