Monday, October 30, 2006

What Are The Good BitTorrent Search Engines?

As of October 30, 2006, the 5 Best Bit Torrent search engine sites are listed below. This list is selected from hundreds of reader votes, and voted on each week by a small panel of torrent download users.

The criteria used to evaluate these torrent sites: breadth and depth of database, database currency, ease of use and searching, speed of access, general integrity of files, information provided about the files, information provided on the torrent P2P community, price of membership, and readers' comments.
Warning: while P2P file sharing technology is completely legal, many of the files traded through P2P are copyrighted. Unless you live in Canada where citizens are shielded from P2P copyright lawsuits, then downloading P2P files may put you at risk for a civil lawsuit in any other country.

These lawsuits usually take the form of class-action suits, filed against groups of users who are logged as blatantly copying and distributing copyrighted materials. Recently, the MPAA and RIAA, along with the governments of England and Australia, took several thousand users to court, demanding that they pay thousands of dollars in copyright infringement penalties.

Your Internet Service Provider may, at their discretion, release their logs of your downloading activity to potential copyright plaintiffs. The more megabytes you download, the more you risk being sued by the MPAA, RIAA, and other pro-artist groups. Please keep this risk in mind before you use any of the following Torrent search engines below.

    (a search engine that searches torrent search engines)

  2. Torrentspy
    (Recently, this site went through a facelift, and it is winning over many new subscribers.)

  3. Isohunt
    (This Canadian database has managed to stave off the threat of one MPAA law suit. Alas, the site is now again being sued by the MPAA as of February, 2006. The site owner is a true libertarian, and needs financial help mounting a defense against the MPAA. Read the details at the Isohunt home page. This is an outstanding torrent database, and P2P users are cheering for its continued success and operations.)

  4. The Pirate Bay
    (Pirate Bay, by readership size, is the most popular torrent search site today. Like Isohunt, Pirate Bay has an immense database of the latest torrents.)

    (May 31, 2006 update: The Pirate Bay has been temporarily shut down by Swedish authorities. Details are available on the Pirate Bay home page. This is a sad day for torrent users everywhere.)

    (June 2006 update: The Pirate Bay has restarted operations, now that the police have duplicated the PB hard drives for forensic purposes. Enjoy this database while it is still around, folks!)


  6. **Special Mention: Torrentportal
    (Torrentportal has been recommended by many reader emails this May.)

  7. **Special Mention: Seedler
    (was a former member of this list, and has recently become a renewed reader favorite.)



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