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i2hub Shuts Down
November 15, 2005
Thomas Mennecke
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It's a sad day for university students across the globe. The i2hub, a hotspot for university students to congregate and trade information has been forced offline. i2hub was a specialized file-sharing network specifically designed to operate on the experimental Internet2 consortium.

Internet2 is a consortium of 207 universities, with participation and funding from public and private entities. The intention of Internet2 is to conduct research and develop efficient protocols on this super high-speed network.

As part of the Internet, Internet2 has drawn the allure of university students interested in what university students do best: immerse themselves in P2P. Although any P2P client is compatible on Internet2, by far the most popular network has been i2hub. Not simply because an individual can download a 6 megabyte song in a few seconds or a DVD Rip in under a minute, but because I2hub was exactly what its name implied.

i2hub was a meeting and greeting place for university students across the globe. It offered chat, dating, interaction, community, and the opportunity to exchange information. However, the allure of file-sharing drew the ire of the RIAA (Recording Industry Associate of America), who began targeting individual users of this network.

On April 12, 2005, the RIAA announced its first actions against individual users of the i2hub network. In its statement, the RIAA filed 405 “John Doe” lawsuits against university students across the United States. Several hundred more students would be targeted throughout the year, clearly indicating the high paced activity of this network.

As this network grew in popularity, the RIAA targeted i2hub directly. Emboldened by the June 29th Supreme Court decision against Grokster, Wayne Chang, the talent behind i2hub, was issued a cease and desist letter. Like his P2P brethren, the only financially feasible way to avoid the wrath of the copyright industry was to capitulate. Last night, Wayne Chang decided the unfortunate fate of the I2hub network.

"As you know, i2hub closed its operations last night due to legal concerns,” Wayne told Slyck.com. "Students are hanging signs, painting campus boulders with 'Remember i2hub', etc across the country."

Since i2hub required a centralized hub in order for the network to function, Wayne's fateful decision brought down the entire community.

Yet Wayne's days as a P2P developer is far from over. In fact, the end of 2hub may prove to be just a speed bump in P2P development road.

"...Something that may be of interest, Pacific Northwest Software, a company that I am a Director for, is creating the next generation of P2P software. Due to obligations, I can't name the specific companies the software is for...."

Although i2hub is offline, the history of file-sharing reveals this may not be the end. Being a crafty and resourceful community, not too many would be surprised if i2hub resurrected itself in some fashion.

This story is filed in these Slyck News categories
Legal/Courtroom :: Individual Lawsuits
P2P Clients :: Other Clients

i2hub Homepage.

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