The Axxo effect
Photo: K. V. Srinivasan
Whether Axxo can reclaim his No 1 position after his dramatic return remains to be seen in the coming days
Movie addict Needs a daily fix
It was like when Daniel Day-Lewis walked out in the middle of hamlet after apparently seeing the ghost of his father. Something spooked Axxo last Christmas, causing him to vanish from the torrenting world, and movie downloaders everywhere felt the chill.
His disappearance was a double blow for movie addicts. The recording industry had recently downed Demonoid.com, the best site for torrents. Axxo, a teenager whose real name and identity is unknown, was bound to be the next target. Millions download his files every month, costing the industry billions of dollars for his 500+ movies uploads so far. While Axxo indicated he was merely taking a break, many suspected he was facing a lawsuit or prison.
Replacing Axxo is not easy. His rips are special: created from an original DVD, they are 700 MB files that fit on a single CD and are viewable directly on a Divxx or Xvid-compatible DVD player. Because thousands of seeders support Axxo files, broadband users can download and watch a new movie everyday. The picture quality is great and subtitles for his rips are easily available on sites like opensubtitles.com.
Axxo or no Axxo, movie addicts need a daily fix, and others took the opening. Many were just Axxo-wannabes; one uploader even called himself KLAXXON, ensuring torrent search engines would lead to his rips when one typed “AXXO”. The best of the lot was FXG, another anonymous teenager, with file size and quality identical to Axxo’s rips. Within a few months, FXG’s rips began to match the envied stats of his predecessor. There were fewer cries for Axxo on bulletin boards. Some even said there was no need for him to come back.
Perhaps stung by the rise of FXG, Axxo made a dramatic return on March 9. His comeback rip was, appropriately enough, of the movie I am legend. Now the question was whether Axxo would reclaim his No 1 position and whether FXG would fade away. The answer, after two months of these two releasing files often within minutes of each other, is that the torrenting public doesn’t care if the cat is black or white. A good rip is a good rip; file size and quality are more important than the uploader’s name; and the more quality uploaders the better.
There has never been a better time for movie downloaders than now. Axxo, FXG, FxM, DUQA, SiriusShare (a classic movie specialist) and others deliver quality rips on sites like superfundo.org. To top it all, even Demonoid.com has resurrected recently. God must be a movie buff!
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