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Rapidshare reinstates high speed downloads for free users

File locker website Rapidshare has announced that it has removed download speed restrictions from free users, as part of a move to introduce what a spokesperson described as “more efficient counter measures” against piracy.

The Rapidshare download limits, which prevented those with free accounts from downloading at speeds over 30Kb/s, were introduced in the wake of the Megaupload shutdown earlier this year, which saw users of the site flock to similar offerings – like Rapidshare – in an effort to share their files. Worried about potentially being shut down themselves, many sites implemented measures to counteract their own image with the authorities as havens for pirates. Certain sites like Filesonic ended up removing file sharing functions altogether and ultimately shut down after massive reductions in users. However Rapidshare simply throttled its downloads, in what is considered a very temperature solution compared to its rivals.

Many considered Rapidshare's name ironic during the throttling

However, now the site is emerging from the troubled times and is offering fast downloads once again. Rapidshare CEO Alexandra Zwingli said while speaking with TorrentFreak: “We can confirm that we have removed all download limits for free users, which is part of a new strategy. Even though the limit was initially introduced to deter piracy, we have since then come to realize that there are more efficient counter measures. Further details will be announced towards the end of 2012.”

The reaction from file sharers has been mixed. Some consider it hypocritical that Rapidshare is so anti-piracy, considering its meteoric rise as down to so many people sharing pirated content on the site. Others however consider it a smart move considering the crack downs against other sites. The fact that the SurfTheChannel owner received a four year jail sentence shows that some courts really aren’t messing around when it comes to content platform providers.

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