Ever so often, the people in charge try to get tough with those who break the law. Sometimes, the ‘bad guys’ get away but more often than not, they get caught. And that’s exactly what happened to Torrentvalley.com yesterday.
Torrentvalley is different from other BitTorrent services in that it’s not a file tracker like Pirate Bay. Instead, it’s a torrent indexer. That means Torrentvalley does not host any torrents itself. Rather, it acts like a search engine and attempts to locate the torrent across different trackers.
Another interesting fact is that Torrentvalley’s servers are located in Bulgaria, a country not particularly noted for targeting file-sharers. Unfortunately, that hasn’t lasted very long. Acting on the advice of the Bulgarian Association of Music Producers (BAMP), the Cyber Crime Unit raided Torrentvalley’s premises and shut down its servers.
The charge laid against Torrentvalley was copyright infringement. To quote Ina Kileva, the executive director of BAMP: "Torrentvalley was a major international source of copyright infringing material. This site was a gate towards more than 5 000 torrent-trackers from all over the world. The decisive action by the authorities shows that Bulgaria is no haven for copyright abuse in Internet and makes efforts to protect the rights of those involved in the creative industries."
Torrentvalley certainly wasn’t the largest BitTorrent network out there. They had about 150,000 registered users but a fair number of people probably used the indexing service without registering. This does reinforce the fact that the authorities are always on the lookout for those that share copyrighted content.
Have you ever used Torrentvalley.com? What do you think about the site being shut down? Who do you think the next target will be? Let me know in the comments.
Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.