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[liberationtech] popcorn-time

ChaTo (Carlos Alberto Alejandro CASTILLO Ocaranza) chato at
Mon Apr 7 00:50:03 PDT 2014


An answer to the "single point of failure" of having a URL to pull the 
content is to use a secure distribution mechanism.

I think a great candidate is BitMessage, which I have been using for 
some months now:

BitMessage is a secure peer-to-peer communications protocol that allows 
you to broadcast a message (or receive a broadcast message) without 
revealing your IP address.


On 04/06/2014 11:41 PM, Jonathan Wilkes wrote:
> Hi list,
>      Can some tech liberator out there versed in javascript and video 
> streaming please take over the popcorn-time project?  It looks like it 
> was developed pseudonymously by at least three teams now which have 
> all disappeared (probably due to pressure from Hollywood).
> If you haven't heard of it, see:
> Why should this interest you?
> * Licensed GPL v3
> * Has the most user-friendly interface I've seen in a piece of free 
> software
> * Runs on GNU/Linux, OSX, Windows
> * Streams downloads efficiently and uses Bittorrent to seed while the 
> user watches (with no setup or intervention by the user)
> * Accessibility.  Looks like the project is getting bullied with a 
> game of whack-a-mole, probably due to pressure from Hollywood. AFAICT 
> there is no new technology being used-- the original devs used mostly 
> pre-existing libs to make something that is easy to use.  What 
> everyone on this list can do using Transmission and VLC can now be 
> done by non-experts.
> How to stop the game of whack-a-mole?
> There needs to be something like a "popcorn kernel" team.  It should 
> use exactly the same API as the software currently does, but just have 
> a place where the user can type in an address from which to pull the 
> content.  It'd be pretty easy to host a tracker with one or two public 
> domain titles and test with that.  Then if a site like 
> decides to adopt the YTF API to access its public domain videos, users 
> can just add that address and start streaming the content.  (And again 
> because they are also seeding this helps out, so it's a 
> win-win.)
> That would remove the only controversial line of code-- the url of 
> YTF-- so that anyone who wants to improve the software may do it 
> without being bullied.  Also, if there were a well-known organization 
> dedicated to hosting and defending free software that could host the 
> repo and front page it would lower the risk of a rogue, suspicious 
> site putting up downloads with malware in them. (And each time 
> Popcorn-time gets resurrected at some new domain that risk increases.)
> The original code is still on github.  Not sure about the other 
> incarnations.  It's worth noting that there seemed to be quite a bit 
> of activity on each incarnation (bug fixes, improvements) so it might 
> be worth it to try to find a link to the most recent incarnation.  
> (And since it's git it should be easy to audit the changes.)
> I really wish I knew javascript and node.js.  Then I'd just do it 
> myself. :)
> Best,
> Jonathan

ChaTo (Carlos Castillo) <>
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