Anti-BitTorrent news spawns an avalanche of criticism

How’s that for a headline?

As I sit here writing a column about BitTorrent, it seems somehow appropriate to note how much BitTorrent has been in the news lately — most of that news has been bad. Now, John Dvorak thinks he’s got it figured out and the smell seems to be coming out of Redmond. Microsoft, after all, has come up with a better P2P file sharing product, or at least, they plan on coming up with one some day, something called Avalanche.

It seems that some security expert has claimed that BitTorrent is distributing spyware (say it isn’t so?!), as though spyware couldn’t infect a PC in any other way, say through Internet Explorer‘s many, er, um, failings as a for instance.

Meanwhile, Bram Cohen, the author of BitTorrent has responded to Microsoft’s great new P2P system to come by labelling it vaporware and complete garbage. To be fair to Microsoft, however, I don’t see how you can call something that doesn’t exist garbage. Who knows, maybe it will be the greatest P2P file sharing program in the history of the known universe . . . [ insert appropriate smiley here ]

June 24th update : Meanwhile, Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols over at thinks Dvorak has it all wrong and explains why in his article.

Now, back to that BitTorrent article.

— Marcel

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