Joystream Test Drive — How To Get Paid Bitcoin Seeding Bittorrent Files

Joystream Test Drive — How To Get Paid Bitcoin Seeding Bittorrent Files


Last week the file sharing Bittorrent client that pays users for seeding and sharing bandwidth, Joystream, announced launching on the bitcoin cash (BCH) network. We decided to give the platform a test drive to show how to use the application that offers BCH incentives.

Also read: Lawsuit Challenges Google’s Ban on Crypto Ads in Russia

Joystream and Bitcoin Cash Mainnet

Joystream is a peer-to-peer application that uses bitcoin cash as an incentive for Bittorrent users that compensate each other for content within a distributed network. Originally the team started off with an attempt to use the bitcoin core (BTC) network but fees and transaction confirmation times became unreliable. On March 20 the application has launched on the Bitcoin Cash mainnet and is available for download in Mac, Windows, and Linux operating systems (OS).

Joystream Test Drive — How To Get Paid Bitcoin Seeding Bittorrent Files

Experimenting With Joystream

Test Driving Joystream — The Bittorrent Client That Offers BCH Incentives Joystream & Bitcoin Cash

After downloading the appropriate platform for your OS and opening the software, users are greeted with a “terms of use” page, which asks the user to accept full responsibility when using the Joystream software. This would likely be due to seeders sharing copyrighted materials as there is no discretion to what you can or cannot download and upload. The platform also has an onboarding BCH faucet for users to test out the clients’ features and services. When I first opened the Joystream user interface, the faucet gave me $0.30 cents worth of BCH for purchasing files on the platform.

The interface is basically the same as any torrent engine that allows seeding and downloading all types of content. The difference is that you get a bitcoin cash wallet, and can earn small fractions of BCH by seeding material. You can also charge a fee for sharing rare material or other types of popular content. To start the experiment, Joystream gives you around five free torrent files so you can start downloading and seeding once the file is finished. There is also an upload section where a user can drag a downloaded torrent file or upload via a mirror.

Test Driving Joystream — The Bittorrent Client That Offers BCH Incentives The free content Joystream provides for testing.

I decided to go to my favorite torrent site and tapped a free ‘Kung-Fu Training Guide’  mirror. As soon as I did my computer asked me if I wanted to utilize Joystream for the upload process.

Test Driving Joystream — The Bittorrent Client That Offers BCH Incentives Joystream works with torrent mirrors, and the application will open as soon as you authorize it.

I initiated the process, and the upload began just like any other torrent engine. It shows the number of seeders and sellers in the download section and the revenue and the number of buyers in the upload section. If I wanted to sell the ‘Kung-Fu Training Guide’ book I could set any price I desired for seeding it to my peers. It’s likely that better content, or some exclusive material could be more valuable to Joystream users.

Test Driving Joystream — The Bittorrent Client That Offers BCH Incentives Joystream’s UI shows the user’s BCH balance, downloads, uploads, and the torrents being downloaded, seeded, paused, deleted and more.

A Few Features to Wait for in the Next Version Release

So far there is not much content on the platform, but it’s evident Joystream users are experimenting with the protocol from the discussions within the community Telegram and Slack channels. The BCH faucet and free content in the beginning, however, is more than enough for users to learn how to tinker with the application, and torrent savvy users will have no issues.

Test Driving Joystream — The Bittorrent Client That Offers BCH Incentives The Joystream BCH wallet can send and receive and also shows prior transactions.

At the time of publication, there are three sections which are unavailable at the moment which include the ‘new content tab, the publishing tab, and the live streaming tab’ which can be used to stream content like music and movies. These three features will be launched in the next release, the developers explain.

Overall the platform was straightforward and operated much like the Utorrent, Vuze, and Limewire software. Being the first day and the initial version release it should be expected that the content is lacking. The next hurdle for the team will likely be launching the following version with the rest of the features, and hoping the concept of rewarding seeders with crypto catches people’s attention.

What do you think about the Joystream app? Do you think an idea like this will catch on with seeders and those who use torrent software? Let us know what you think in the comments below.

Images via Shutterstock, and Joystream. 

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Hong Kong’s Securities and Futures Commission Halts Black Cell ICO

Hong Kong’s securities watchdog, the Securities and Futures Commission (SFC), has interfered with the initial coin offering (ICO) of Black Cell Technology Ltd., ordering the firm to halt the sale of its digital currency to Hong Kong buyers.

According to the SFC, Black Cell had engaged in “potential unauthorized promotional activities and unlicensed regulated activities.” In response, Black Cell Technology halted its ICO and agreed to “unwind” ICO transactions for Hong Kong investors by returning the relevant tokens to them by the end of the month.

Securities and Futures Commission

In its announcement the SFC determined that “Black Cell had promoted an ICO to sell digital tokens to investors through its website accessible by the Hong Kong public, with the pitch that the ICO proceeds would be used to fund the development of a mobile application and holders of the tokens would be eligible to redeem equity shares of Black Cell.”

According to the SFC, such an arrangement constitutes a “Collective Investment Scheme” under the circumstances. The agency has previously intervened in the ICO processes of multiple other firms, but this is the first time that the regulatory authority has publicly named a company that it has taken action against.

Black Cell is developing a mobile-based food marketplace named Krops, which they claim will simplify business for both farmers and shoppers. The company’s website describes its business as a platform where users can gain “access to every food source in the world, from the biggest farms to the smallest backyard.” It further states that its mobile app “provides access to supply and demand information to aid farmers in production and assist buyers in purchasing.”

Increased Attention Paid to ICOs

ICOs have increasingly had to restrict access to investors from countries hostile to the business model. The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), for example, has in particular been clamping down on ICOs, with detailed investigations underway. Some projects have received subpoenas and suspension notices, and those just entering the ICO space are keen to stay out of the way.

Whilst the development in Hong Kong has taken some by surprise, the action by the SFC has not come out of nowhere. Last month the regulatory body issued a warning to cryptocurrency trading platforms to not involve themselves with tokens that could be perceived as securities. Over the past few months the body has been developing its approach, indicating potential action as far back as September of last year when a statement was issued that some cryptocurrency platforms held features that could class them as securities.

As noted, it’s likely Black Cell was targeted because their token specifically referenced a return for token holders — a move that, in regulators eyes, clearly marked the token as a potential security; other projects have been more ambiguous in their approach and avoided direct regulatory intervention — at least for now.

Judge Sentences Five University of Manchester Students Who Sold Millions of Dollars of Drugs on the Dark Web

Five students from the University of Manchester who sold more than £800,000 ($1.12 million) worth of drugs on the dark web using Bitcoin have been sentenced and jailed — the ringleader, Basil Assaf, has received 15 years and three months.  

Assaf and his accomplice James Roden were arrested at their Manchester city centre flat on the day the FBI shut down Silk Road in October 2013. Agents found laptops used to access the dark web, thousands of pounds in cash, and drugs including LSD, ecstasy, ketamine, and diazepam. The value of their sales was at least £812,000, the court heard, but their profits are likely to have grown exponentially due to the rise in the value of Bitcoin over the past few years. Prosecutors have so far been unable to trace Assaf’s Bitcoin.

Dark Web Dreams

According to reports, the men partied in the Bahamas, Jamaica, and Amsterdam before being intercepted. The group, who likened themselves to Breaking Bad’s Walter White, included undergraduates studying pharmacology, computer science, petrochemical engineering, geology, and marketing.

Throughout the trial the Manchester crown court heard how the group originally sold drugs to fellow students to fund their own habits, then expanding their operation, selling ecstasy, LSD, and ketamine across Europe, the US, Australia, and New Zealand on the now-defunct online drug marketplace Silk Road. 

At one point the group was nominated for “drug dealer of the year” on the site, leading Assaf to brag to his accomplice Jaikishen Patel:

“Nominated for shotter of the year haha on SR. Someone posted a thread and prof nominated us. TBF if they knew what we did IRL we do deserve it.”

Judge Michael Leeming

Between May 2011 and October 2013 — though 6,300 transactions with buyers across the world — the group sold 16.7kg of ecstasy worth $750,000, as well as 1.23kg of 2CB, a drug that mimics the effects of ecstasy, and 1.46kg of ketamine. Sentencing the group, Judge Michael Leeming said use of the dark web was an aggravating factor and that the harmful and dangerous class A drugs wrought misery on society.

“As intelligent men, you will each appreciate the misery that is caused and contributed to by people like you,” he said. “My duty is threefold: firstly, to protect the public from people like you. Second, to punish you, and third, to deter those who may be similarly minded to act this way in the future.” Leeming added: “These offenses are so serious that only immediate custody and sentences of some length can be considered.”

Meet the Guys

The ringleader, Basil Assaf, 26, was sentenced to 15 years and three months in prison. Family members of Assaf, a petrochemical engineering student who had no previous convictions, cried and hugged each other as he was led to the cells.

James Roden, 25, who studied computer science, and Jaikishen Patel, 26, who studied pharmacology, were both involved with the Silk Road account and the buying and supplying of drugs. Roden received a 12-year prison sentence and Patel was jailed for 11 years and two months.

Elliot Hyams, 26 — a geology student who had been at Dr Challoner’s grammar school in Amersham, Buckinghamshire with Assaf — was involved in the underworld startup but was thrown out after Assaf “lost patience” with him, according to the judge. Hyams was jailed for 11 years and three months.

Joshua Morgan, 28, who studied marketing, played the smallest role in the group — packaging the drugs for sale. He was jailed for seven years and two months.