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uTorrent Sign Six Month PeerFactor Agreement
March 4, 2006
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According to a statement by PeerFactor, the lead developer of µTorrent, Ludvig Strigeus, has agreed to help develop “new content distribution applications on the Web”.

The developer has signed a contract with PeerFactor for an initial six month evaluation period.

Since the public release of uTorrent in September, the client has risen to the number one spot on Slyck’s list of BitTorrent clients for Windows, as voted by users. This is mostly due to the tiny memory usage, which is around 6MB, compared to second most popular, Azureus, which is typically over 70MB. Yet uTorrent remains feature-rich.

By developing the PeerFactor software, which uses the BitTorrent protocol, Strigeus will be entitled to a share of any advertising revenue generated by the final product.

This move into the authorised distribution market is a step away from anti-P2P technology for PeerFactor, which was a subsidiary of French anti-piracy group RetSpan. The two companies became independent companies six months ago.

PeerFactor shot to notoriety in April 2004 by giving financial rewards to file sharers for spreading fake files and directing downloaders to authorised download sites.

News that µTorrent are selling their software will fuel speculation as to why uTorrent has remained close source, which is extremely uncommon for BitTorrent clients.

This is not of concern to Strigeus, who told Slyck News, “This doesn't affect µTorrent, it's just a side project. If people like to be paranoid, I won't stop them.”

Strigeus denies that he is helping PeerFactor fight the P2P community by providing the coding.

“The agreement says that the software will be used to distribute legal content over the internet. In my understanding, everything in our agreement says that it will be used for downloading legal content,” Strigeus told Slyck News.

Although Strigeus rejects that he knew PeerFactor’s history of attacking and disrupting P2P networks, he defends working with the company now he does know.

“Just because I sell cleaning services to Microsoft doesn't mean I like Windows.”

Update: Please note there is a correction to this article. It was originally reported that PeerFactor is a subsidiary of RetSpan. The two companies parted ways six months ago.

PeerFactor deny ever being involved in anti-P2P operations, despite the reports to the contrary.

“We do not distribute any fake file over P2P, but only useful content,” Frenchman Richard Rodrigues, head of PeerFactor told Slyck. “We have never distributed fakes file (unreadable) because no user would […] want to distribute [them]."

This story is filed in these Slyck News categories
BitTorrent :: BitTorrent Clients
Authorized P2P :: Other

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