Today we are really excited to announce that the Internet Archive is making over one million pieces of archived content available to the world via BitTorrent.
The Internet Archive is a non-profit digital library with the stated mission of “universal access to all knowledge.” They offer permanent storage of and free public access to collections of digitized materials, including websites, music, moving images, and over two million public-domain books. Today all of the archives’ live music concerts, the Prelinger movie collection, the librivox audio book collection, feature films, old time radio, lots of books, and all new Community uploads will be available as torrent files.
BitTorrent is the now fastest way to download complete items from the Archive, because the BitTorrent client downloads simultaneously from two different Archive servers located in two different datacenters, and from other Archive users who have downloaded these torrents.
We’re committed to building a sustainable future that empowers creative content, effects the social good and ultimately persuades institutional change. We were happy to find that our interests align with those of the Internet Archive as we strive to protect and maintain society’s cultural artifacts – creating new ways to discover media and share it worldwide. Combined with the vast amount of content from the Internet Archive and the size and scope of the BitTorrent community, this is truly a worthy cause and we look forward to continuing to build new content solutions for the digital world.
The distributed nature of BitTorrent protocol-based swarms and their ability to retrieve torrent files from local peers may be of particular value to patrons with slower access to the Archive, for example those outside the United States or inside institutions with slow connections.
The Internet Archive is already starting to track some BitTorrent statistics, which can be fun to watch.