San Francisco (Top40 Charts/ BitTorrent Inc.) Today the Internet Archive, a non-profit digital library with the stated mission of "universal access to all knowledge", is making over one million pieces of archived content available to the world via the BitTorrent protocol.
"Thank you to BitTorrent and its community for evolving such a useful technology to distribute public materials quickly, efficiently, and inexpensively."
The Internet Archive offers permanent storage of and free public access to collections of digitized materials, including websites, music, moving images, and over 2 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 protocol-based software 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," said Eric Klinker, chief executive officer for BitTorrent. "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."
Said Brewster Kahle, founder and digital librarian for Internet Archive, "Thank you to BitTorrent and its community for evolving such a useful technology to distribute public materials quickly, efficiently, and inexpensively."
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.
To download the torrent file from an archive.org details page, click the torrent link at the bottom of the download box; your BitTorrent protocol-based client can use the torrent file you get to download all the files in the Archive item, including the original item files, plus all derivative and metadata files. Individual files can be selected (or deselected) from the list within most BitTorrent protocol-based clients, allowing torrent files to be used to retrieve both an entire item, or, a specific subset of files within it.
The Internet Archive is already starting to track some BitTorrent statistics, which can be fun to watch.