updated 05:30 pm EDT, Tue May 7, 2013
First transfer with new protocol requires only an email to unlock
File-sharing network BitTorrent has revealed a "direct-to-fan" collaboration with music label Ultra. Using a new protocol called the BitTorrent Bundle, an interaction by the downloader -- such as providing information or even paying for the content -- is required before unlocking restricted content. The mechanism for secure distribution is embedded within the protocol, and compatible with existing BitTorrent clients.
Few details of the protocol itself were provided, but BitTorrent says that the need for the protocol is clear. The company says that it doesn't need "another walled garden or standalone content store. We need ways to place value exchanges within the content itself - allowing these exchanges to travel freely, without barriers or limitations; allowing these exchanges to multiply as content is shared."
The initial information required is an email address, provided by the user, to access additional content on artist Kaskade's Freaks of Nature tour. Half of the content by the band in the download is completely free. The other half, unlockable with an email address, includes unreleased show footage, and a digital tour booklet.