P2P Shifting Away From BitTorrent

    August 30, 2005
    WebProNews Staff

Services like eDonkey have picked up the load for file sharers as a result of law enforcement action against illegal “tracker” sites.

P2P technology company CacheLogic has released a study on usage of peer to peer networking in 2005. The study notes traffic has moved away from BitTorrent to the decentralized eDonkey network in many places.

“This is almost assuredly a result of the increased legal action toward the once-ignored BitTorrent – a game of P2P hide-and-seek’,” CacheLogic’s Andrew Parker contends in the study.

No tears will be shed for the loss of illegal file sharers from BitTorrent’s userland. “eDonkey and other P2P networks can have the entire piracy market because we’re not interested in it at all,” BitTorrent’s COO Ashwin Navin said. BitTorrent has never endorsed illicit file trading.

CacheLogic claims as much as 30 percent of all Internet traffic was from usage of BitTorrent, by the end of 2004. That has changed throughout much of world; the US and Europe have seen a rise in eDonkey usage, as has South Korea. Much of Asia still uses BitTorrent, Mr. Parker noted.

Among file sharers, over 61 percent of the P2P traffic on the four networks observed by CacheLogic consisted of video content. Broadband penetration has likely motivated users to switch from swapping audio files like songs to movies and TV shows. 11 percent of files traded were audio, while the remaining 27 percent consisted of other digital content like software.

On a closing note, CacheLogic contends the MGM v Grokster ruling, where a service could be liable for the illegal actions of its users if it promoted itself as a way to infringe copyright, “did not result in a rapid decline in P2P usage.”

David Utter is a staff writer for WebProNews covering technology and business. Email him here.