How we approach copyright claims

Torrent network is the one internet element where users can enjoy tons of absolutely free contents and there are millions using this network. Nearly the whole globe has an application running on their computers or mobile device that gives them access to a wide range of content and myriad amounts of data through this network. Both free and copyrighted content are available on the torrent network.

From a legal perspective, downloading a TV show, movie, a game or any copyrighted content without actually paying for it is considered a crime. But, as torrenting is an activity that is widespread across the globe, users believe it to be harmless. Several countries do not have strict and concrete laws to prevent the downloading of torrents and their respective files.

When our crawler indexes a torrent hash we do not download anything (no torrent files, no contents). We just get digital files metadata from users. So we have no way to really know if a content is copyrighted or not. A file name can suggest it could contain copyrighted content, but we have no way to verify if this is true or not.

So, if we receive a copyright claim, we add a big red alert on the related indexed hash to warn the user about it. You can see an example here.

In this way we alert the user that there is a copyright claim about the indexed hash, who claimed it, and we warn him that, if he tries to get the indexed content using P2P software he could break the law. In this way we therefore try to spread the awareness that on P2P networks there may be materials whose download is a crime.

We are also working to provide a free API interface that external source can use to check if a torrent hash had a copyright claim.