Once every a while one needs to download media content or software from peers. Torrent sites allow people to share these resources without the need to keep the resources in a single location. A file being shared through a torrent site is therefore stored in many locations and that ensures that somewhere there is a copy should someone need it.
Of course content producers like software developers and TV studios don’t like torrents. The argument is that torrent sharing leads to the violation of copyright. That is precisely why governments around the world put in measures to shut down torrent sites. Sometimes efforts bear fruit in the short term.
In the long term they don’t because the torrenting community always finds a way to clone sites which have been shut down. The perfect example for this is Pirate Bay which gets shut down regularly, only for a variation of the original site to show up under a name like OldPirateBay or Piratebay.sa.
Some governments have resulted to trying and following the habits of individual members of the torrenting community with the aim of finding out which areas they come from and therefore prevailing upon ISPs in those areas to close access to the torrent sites. That is why recommend that one accesses torrent sites through a VPN connection. That way downloads and uploads cannot get traced back to you easily.
The 10 most popular torrenting sites in order of popularity from Alexa and Compete are:
Kickass was started in 2009 and has over time been censured many times. The site has had to change domains frequently, with the most recent being Somalian Kickass.so. Alexa rates them at number 151 and Compete at number 711.
This site does not host torrents but rather acts as a directory to sites which do. As a result it has evaded censorship better than its peers. That said Torrentz has several domains with the.eu being most popular. Alexa ranks them at 2006 and Compete at 1,716.
This site is ranked at 356 by Alexa and at 3,446 by Compete. The main players here are ETTV and ETRG.
- The Pirate Bay and its variants
The Pirate Bay is the most censored torrenting site. They have many clones ad therefore remain popular. Pirate Bay is the leading brand for torrents.
This site focuses on movies and has been censured severally in the UK. The site is owned by release group YIFY.
This site focuses on offering torrents to popular TV shows. They are ranked 1,262 by Alexa and 5,421 by Compete.
This is a Bulgarian site that has been blacklisted in the UK severally.
Isohunt.to was started after Isohunt.com was shut down. It is however not affiliated with Isohunt.com.
This site seeks to offer torrents without ads. The site therefore only offers a way to download and share without selling that attention.
The site gained popularity after Lion’s Gate sued them for hosting a copy of The Expendables 3. They are ranked 2,608 on Alexa.