March 20, 2015
Popcorn Time became one of the most popular torrenting sites since it debuted nearly a year ago, and even though the original was taken down, spin-offs plan to stay. Popcorn-Time.se, for example, makes it easy to find torrented content like pirated movies and television shows. Its developers plan to make the site harder to take down by implementing a peer-to-peer protocol. The MPAA was successful in shutting down the original Popcorn Time, but it has not been able to shut down the spin-off sites yet.
Technically, Popcorn Time does not host any of the illicit content, but rather helps users access torrents from other sites like Pirate Bay, Kickass Torrents, isoHunt, and YTS. However, the site could still be accused of “contributory liability” for facilitating the streaming or downloading of illegal content.
Part of the reason is because these sites are rapidly growing. A developer from Popcorn-Time.se told Wired that the site “has millions of users and is growing at the mind-bending rate of 100,000 downloads per day.” Popcorn Time accounts for one-ninth of U.S. torrent traffic.
Developers from Popcorn Time are now working to ensure that the site will stay up, despite threats from the copyright cops. The site plans to switch to a peer-to-peer protocol that will keep content streaming, even if the domain or centralized servers are shut down. The developer from Popcorn-Time.se said that this feature would put the fate of the site in users’ hands, and make Popcorn Time unstoppable if it can evade MPAA lawyers.