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Author Topic: micropayments - how are the filesharing people making it work?  (Read 2047 times)
slowmaker
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« on: January 02, 2010, 02:06:54 AM »

Recent ramblings led me to sites that talked about 'uploading for cash'. Now, I realize they are probably mostly, if not all, warez doodz uploading pirated movies/software and being paid by the filesharing companies for every 1000 downloads, 10000 downloads, whatever. But how are the filesharing companies making their money? I've never had occasion to download from the ones that claim such high pay rates (some claim $10-15 per 1000 downloads), so I don't know what rigmarole they put the downloader through, but it can't possibly be just ads. Surely if ad impressions paid that high the issue of how to pay for small-shop/side-job software would never even be debated.

Are they requiring downloaders to take surveys or some such thing?

Or am I completely off base in my assumptions? Is $15 per 1000 ad impressions actually normal, and just sounds fantastic to me because I'm broke?

If they are not requiring anything too onerous, might that be a possibility for micropayment of software authors in the future? Host your software with one of these filesharing outfits, the software could remain free, the user doesn't have to do anything but download the software (no digging out the credit card), the download makes the author some money. Maybe not much money; most of the sites I skimmed (like ziddu) did not offer that top end rate, they were more like $1 per 1000 downloads. Still, that would be something; certainly more than you would get hosting pure freeware on your own site.

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housetier
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« Reply #1 on: January 02, 2010, 09:29:45 AM »

Some of these filehosting sites like rapidshit have a subscription plan where subscribers pay a certain amount to be able to download without the usual limitations (wait several seconds/minutes, max so-and-so many MB per hour per IP, and so forth). I think that's how they generate revenue.
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slowmaker
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« Reply #2 on: January 02, 2010, 01:38:34 PM »

Quote
Some of these filehosting sites like rapidshit have a subscription plan
That makes sense. I've gone to test one since I first posted (uploaded a gibberish text file), and when I went to the download link they made me wait 60 seconds, plus the link for the free download was made to appear grayed out while the premium membership download was brightly colored (the grey link worked fine). The page I saw while I waited was filled with subscription ads, showing all the different membership tiers and prices.

That wouldn't be a deal breaker for me, as long as a delay was the only obstacle, but I don't know whether it would bother your average freeware hunter or not. Obviously a lot of people do use the file sharers, but I supposed they might be mostly after things which are not normally free.

I just realized that freeware often gets mirrored by about a gazillion freeware sites, so I suppose the paid-for-downloads-by-the-file-hoster micropayment model wouldn't really work that well anyway. Pity.
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f0dder
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« Reply #3 on: January 02, 2010, 01:43:00 PM »

but I don't know whether it would bother your average freeware hunter or not
Please don't use the term "freeware" for warez.
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slowmaker
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« Reply #4 on: January 02, 2010, 01:46:56 PM »

but I don't know whether it would bother your average freeware hunter or not
Please don't use the term "freeware" for warez.
I didn't. The whole point of the thread is to ponder whether filesharing sites might be an appropriate storage/micropayment for freeware as opposed to the nonsense they are currently used for.
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f0dder
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« Reply #5 on: January 02, 2010, 01:48:57 PM »

Why on earth would you use them for that, when there's already reputable download+indexing sites like download.com and friends? Pay people to harvest files from other sources and put them on rapidshare, which is used for... well, what exactly, apart from warez and sending the random file to a friend? O_o
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slowmaker
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« Reply #6 on: January 02, 2010, 02:01:59 PM »

Why on earth would you use them for that, when there's already reputable download+indexing sites like download.com and friends? Pay people to harvest files from other sources and put them on rapidshare, which is used for... well, what exactly, apart from warez and sending the random file to a friend? O_o

What's the thing that got donationcoder started, according to the 'about' pages and the article somewhere on the site (from 2006 or so, I think)? Looking for payment options that work and are unobtrusive to the user.

That's the point of considering whether paid-to-download sites might someday be a reasonable idea for legitimate files.

As stated above, I don't actually think it would work, because of the mirroring thing and the various dodgy methods these guys use to obscure the free download link.

I just think any idea that gives software authors a way to survive while doing what they love should be giving a fair mulling over, not summarily kicked to the curb because we reflexively associate the host with warez or pirated movies.

You know; give it a fair trial, then shoot it. smiley
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