What is limewire and how does it work?
LimeWire LimeWire is computer program which is able to run on operating systems supported by the Java software platform. The program is a peer-to-peer system which was developed to enable users to share music files. It is hosted on the Gnutella network and is available in 31 languages. The developer of this program is an organization called Lime Wire LLC and they released the program to the public in May 2000. When you sign up with LimeWire as a user, the program is loaded onto your computer and you effectively become part of a network of LimeWire users. This membership allows you to access and download files from the computers of all other users on the network. As the network expands, the selection of music available to every LimeWire member increases exponentially. As with many programs of this type, there was a free version available with limited functionality and an enhanced version with a monetary cost. The marketing rationale is that if a user loads the free version and begins to use it, he will almost certainly be tempted to upgrade. The cost of the enhanced version is small compared to the benefits afforded by the full membership program and the constant marketing messages push this point. Criticisms of the LimeWire program include a vulnerability to computer virus transmission between members. This weakness was corrected to a certain extent in the various upgrades to the program. As one might imagine, any program which allows other people to access the files on ones computer is bound to have some associated risks. LimeWire was used to commit identity theft in 2006. A man called Gregory Thomas Kopiloff was arrested in Seattle in 2007 for committing identity theft using LimeWire to access data on remote computers. He used personal information thus gained to obtain credit cards which he used to shop online. In May 2010, the court ruled against the Lime Group LLC in a copyright infringement case, charging that LimeWire was guilty of committing and enabling copyright infringement in the music industry. In October 2010 the company was ordered to disable the system. If you go to the LimeWire website you will see a copy of the injunction on the disabled home page. In May 2011 an out of court settlement was reached between Lime Wire and 13 record companies in which Lime Wire paid $105 million to the complainants. Despite the demise of the original scheme, LimeWire still exists and runs on millions of computers all over the world. Other groups have taken the platform over and continue to offer the service to users. These alternative services include LimeWire Pirate Edition, WireShare and FrostWire. Sites like limewirefreedownload.org offer any potential user a quick and easy download of the program.