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BitTorrent Launches Live-Streaming News Network

BitTorrent is probably best known for its torrent-downloading client which many use to illegally download movies and music, but as of late the company is working hard to be recognised as something more than just a torrent downloading client, its latest effort is a live-streaming news network.

Although BitTorrent tries its best to distance itself from the illegal site of torrents, it’s something the company just can’t shake off, however in recent times the company has tried to be a more legitimate file sharing service beginning with BitTorrent Bundles – usually exclusive content from artists which users can download for free, or pay a small price to download.

BitTorrent has also been responsible for starting its own peer to peer messaging service, and more recently its own music / video streaming service, BitTorrent Now. Now, the company is getting into news, and has launched its own live-streaming news network: BitTorrent News.

This new news network is set to go live on July 18 at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Ohio. Heading the network will be news director Harrison Bohrman, a former producer with Vice’s TV network Viceland. In addition to Bohrman, the company also have a team on the ground for the political conventions happening in the states, which will include several former reporters and producers from Al Jazeera America, including former chief political correspondent Michael Shure, reporter James Reinl, and producer Rita Chan.

“Television news has been stagnating for some time,” Erik Schwartz, vice president of media for BitTorrent, said in a statement. “It’s having trouble appealing to a generation that grew up online. We are using superior data and tools and the Silicon Valley ethos of lean startup to build a nimble news organization that will learn quickly from user behavior.”

At the moment it looks as if news coverage will be focusing on the political happenings in the US with play-by-play commentary on all developments and speeches, along with guest commentary. The stream is set to offer around 10-12 hours of live coverage each day, beginning with two hours in the morning.

It’s looking increasingly like BitTorrent is becoming a lot more than just “that program to download stuff”, and more of a legitimate media platform.