[vlc-devel] [WIP PATCH 0/4] Access module torrent/magnet

Ross Finlayson finlayson at live555.com
Fri Jan 30 09:48:07 CET 2015


I respect your point of view here, and obviously this decision is one for you (the VLC developers) to make.

However, a little push-back:

> VLC would run foul of many corporate IT policies if it got peer-to-peer download support, and possibly even the law in some restrictive countries.

I hope you’re not suggesting bowing to the whim of “some restrictive countries” :-)  The “legality” argument is a weak one here, given that VLC already far more blatantly violates several countries laws in other ways.  Your strongest argument - one that you put forward clearly in your last message - is one based on “morality” rather than “legality:

> There are a few minority legal use of BitTorrent, such as downloading ISOs of free software. But that's not for VLC.
> I know only two real movies legally available over BT, Big Buck Bunny and Star Wreck. Only one of them is feature length. Neither of them you'd particularly want to stream, when downloading them first will be more reliable.
>> Also, what do you mean exactly by the association of your name with
>> this feature ?
> VLC has always been about open-source multimedia and fair use. Playing your DVDs abnd BDs is fair use. Streaming unlicensed content is Pirate party politics, not fair use.

Personally, most of my own use of BitTorrent has not been to download movies, but instead to download episodes of TV shows.  In most cases, these TV shows are ones that I would be legally permitted to watch on my TV at home (because I have a subscription to the show’s cable channel); however, I often can’t watch these shows at home - either because I forgot to set my DVR to record them, or (more likely) because I’m traveling, and don’t have access to my DVR/TV at home.  I think you’d agree that this (watching a TV show from my hotel room that I could legally watch at home) is ‘fair use’ of the BitTorrent protocol.

It would be great if I could use VLC to watch these TV shows (without waiting for them to download completely first).  (But once again, this is clearly your decision to make.)


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