‘Peer to peer’ (P2P) networks or software systems allow users to transfer audio/video files directly from the user’s computer, rather than through the use of a website or directory. It allows the integration of different configurations of computers with software systems without the need for special server devices. P2P has become very popular with domestic users for sharing and downloading audio/video files.
P2P has acquired a non-technical meaning in recent years due to its popularity and is sometimes referred as ‘people-to-people. According to this approach, P2P provides a base for developing new software systems and help in the growth of new businesses that allow users to meet each other on the Internet and share common interests.
The popularity of P2P networks can be gauged from statistical figures that indicate that simultaneous users of these networks have crossed the ten million mark in recent years of which the United States comprised fifty percent, Germany at about ten percent and Canada & France at about eight percent. Some of the most popular P2P networks or software systems include ‘edonkey/overnet’, ‘Shareaza’, ‘WinMX’, ‘BitTorrent’, ‘Limewire’, ‘Morpheus’, ‘eMule’, ‘Ares', ‘BearShare', and ‘Kazaa’. Other P2P are also available on the Internet but are not as reliable and may contain ‘spyware’ or computer viruses that can damage the data stored inside the user’s computer.
P2P does provide an easy to use platform for sharing digital files but is often regarded as the main cause of revenue losses to the music and movie industry. Cases of copyright infringement have become rampant with the use of P2P networks and software systems.
The present system of P2P needs to be improved and effective laws need to be put in place that will check illegal transfers of copyrighted material. The best way is to make these a paid service where users will be charged a nominal amount for sharing and downloading copyrighted material.
P2P provides detailed information on P2P, P2P Downloads, P2P Applications, Free P2P and more. P2P is affiliated with Mpeg Encoders .