RetroShare Brings Anonymous File-Sharing To the Masses

    March 4, 2012
    Zach Walton
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It seems hard these days to find a file-sharing service that isn’t in some way affected by the recent events happening around the world to sites like MegaUpload and The Pirate Bay. There’s always Tribler, the file-sharing service that claims to make torrents obsolete. There may be a service on the net, however, that would make them all look paltry in comparison.

TorrentFreak is reporting that a file-sharing application called RetroShare has been booming in the aftermath of the MegaUpload take down. We reported that the MegaUpload take down did not affect piracy in any way. While the study at that point said those affected move to other file locker services, the new research suggests that more people moved to services like Tribler and RetroShare.

RetroShare is a file-sharing application that prides itself on being completely anonymous. For users to even start sharing files, they have to exchange PGP certificates with only those they trust. The transfer is encrypted using OpenSSL, while files from strangers must go through a trusted source. It sounds like the ultimate file-sharing heaven and it apparently is.

DrBob, the founder of RetroShare, told TorrentFreak that the software has been around since 2006, but it was only recently that he began to see large jumps in usage. He says that downloads tripled on the network in January during the SOPA protest, and that it double again in February when other file sharing services cut back on their services in the wake of the MegaUpload takedown.

DrBob laid out what RetroShare is all about:

“RetroShare is about creating a private space on the Internet. A social collaboration network where you can share anything you want. A space that is free from the prying eyes of governments, corporations and advertisers. This is vitally important as our freedom on the Internet is under increasing threat.RetroShare is free from censorship: like Facebook banning ‘obscene’ breast-feeding photographs. A network that allows you to use any pseudonym, without insisting on knowing your real name. A network where you will not face the threat of jail, or being banned from entry into a country for an innocent tweet.”

Examples like these show that file-sharing is going nowhere and is never going to die. Instead of attacking services or users, content holders need to attack the core problem – their business model. Give users a reason to buy your product and they will. If not, services like RetroShare are going to keep on expanding and growing.

  • ninja

    IF your going to copy and paste from a web site at least link to the original post.


    • http://www.webpronews.com/author/zach-walton Zach Walton

      I linked TorrentFreak in the story. They are a trusted news source that keep us posted on the file-sharing ecosystem that we share with our readers. We would never take away credit from them.

      • Also Ninja

        You intentionally make it look like this is your own work. But hey we’re all thieves here, right?

  • anonymous

    Be VERY wary of heavily promoted”anonymous” filesharing software or services. ths is one way the “rightsholders” entrap peaople. the best ones to go for are the ones that do not have to brag and who operate below the radar so to speak.

    • Kris

      Dude, if the techology/methology they’re using is sound then there’s absolutely no reason for them to be operating “below the radar”. In fact they should be as vocal and open as possible about what they’re doing. This isn’t simply a question of enabling file-sharing, this is about freedom of speach and the open exchange of ideas online.