There’s no shortage of blockchain related file-sharing projects. We have covered quite a few in recent years, ideally those with an actual working product.
While most offer novel solutions for marginal problems, a new project that recently crossed our path stood out.
The goal of Quality Magnet Coin, QMC for short, is to build a large torrent magnet index that’s impossible to take offline, censor, or block.
The core idea is fairly straightforward. The application uses the blockchain to create a decentralized database of torrent magnet links which doesn’t rely on a hosting service or domain name, making it virtually impossible to take down.
“While other existing services and plans are focusing on Pay-to-Seed, that is, paying for uploading the actual data of the files to people who are downloading, we are focused on the creation of a decentralized and searchable database of files to download. Think of it as a decentralized Pirate Bay,” the QMC team tells us.
In addition to keeping a record of all transactions on the blockchain, every user also stores the database of magnet files. This is constantly synced with the network to update it with new magnet links, and to remove those that are frequently voted as ‘bad.’
QMC relies on its users to build the magnet database. Everyone is welcome to submit a magnet link to the database, but it comes with a catch. Submitting a link costs the user 1 QMC but in return, if the magnet is voted as good, they can get 5 QMC back after a month.
This ‘investment’ concept acts as a double-edged sword. The costs prevent spammers from taking over the system, while the returns encourage people to share. At least, that’s the theory.
QMC only just got started but they have a working project available. There are also more than 25 masternodes at the time of writing, which help to keep everything running smoothly. At the moment, 10% of the masternode holders have to vote a torrent as ‘good’ before a payment is made.
When we tried the QMT application, which works, the program froze on a few occasions while searching. The team is aware that there may be some issues initially, but they plan to continue improving on it. The magnet search from the wallet itself seems to work smoothly.
Search results are presented in a basic list. This includes a download link to load magnets into any regular torrent client, plus a link to Instant.io, where they can be downloaded or streamed through WebTorrent.
As for the magnet database, there are just over 5,000 magnet links at the moment, which is very limited. However, the QMC team is currently exploring partnerships with torrent sites to expand it more swiftly.
That also brings up the inevitable legal issues.
A lot of the magnet links point to copyrighted content, which is illegal to download or share. This may be a concern to rightsholders, but the QMC team stresses that the software and network itself is content neutral.
“We have no intention of copyright infringement, just like TRON doesn’t for that matter – even though they want to pay users for seeding torrents,” they say, pointing to the BitTorrent/Tron partnership.
“We simply would like information to be free and available to everyone. Information is always silenced based on political views or other means of pressure and we want to change that. What our users choose to post is up to them.”
On the anonymity side, the wallet has built-in support for access over the Tor network, which users can enable in the configuration file.
The QMC team itself hasn’t revealed any of its members to the public either, but notes that this may change in the future. A full whitepaper speccing out the project objectives and details is in the works as well.
The QMC wallet and the QMT search tool are available on Windows, Mac, and Linux, with iOS and Android versions being planned for next year. The roadmap also includes other plans, such as an API to link torrent sites to the QMC database, and the option for private torrent trackers to accept payments in QMC.
It’s hard to tell where a project like this will go, and whether it can deliver on its promises. That said, if it manages to get widespread adoption, copyright holders are not going to be pleased.
from TorrentFreak https://ift.tt/2ISuGiZ