John Young on Fri, 29 Jan 2010 21:39:26 +0100 (CET)

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Re: <nettime> fast-changing propaganda website archiving tools?

HTTrack, WGet and other rapacious downloaders are the most
bandwidth wasteful and information limiting programs on the Internet.
Site operators hate them for their indiscriminate and repetitive
downloading of the same files over and over, often taking over
low-powered sites so that users are excluded.

Site operators are incensed that siphon users are too lazy
to configure the programs to respect openness of sites, instead
their abuse is causing to sites being closed to public access.

There are way too many predating siphons set loose by hundreds
of search engines and collators and resellers and packagers and
media thieves, even public interest archivers. But worst of all are
the innumerable individuals who use these dumb-shit siphons
without regard to the harm they cause.

Most are capable, indeed brag of, bypassing conventional
blocks by robots.txt and htaccess. Even when blocked they
continue to generate millions, probably billions, of 403 error
messages endlessly, that too squanders bandwidth when
multiplied by the huge volume of repeats 24 x 7 x 12 x eons.

Such programs should at least have as a default setting to download
no more than a hundred files a day from a site and that only after
accepting an agreement to limit downloads from a site or the
program will go into lock-down until the next day. Violations
repeated should cause the programs to die forever and never
again be usable from an violating IP address. Our site has
done just that for hundreds of the narcissistic fuckers.

They are a verminous scourge whose use should be allowed only
to those who pay victimized sites a large penalty for squandered
bandwidth. Best, the siphon program producers should post
a huge deposit in a place where site operators can make withdrawals
for bandwidth wastage and be licensed for making the damaging
programs available to untrained users, say like gun and property

What would be a true public benefit is for each siphon producer
to provide a 100% effective means to block its siphon. Dream
on, to be sure, as if asking the military to provide means to defeat

Damn siphons to hell, there is no longer any public good
that comes from their use, they serve only corporatized
greed and individualized sloth and information-gobbling

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