The long running and popular file sharing site ExtaBit.com has been knocked offline today, in what has been labeled a mysterious act that has left millions of users without access. ExtaBit.com was at one time one of the largest file sharing sites in the world, boasting millions of visitors to the service per day and over 7.5 petabytes of files. Sources close to ScrollDog say that the site has had ongoing legal issues that may have ultimately forced the hand of operators and ultimately caused the shutdown of the business.
In July of 2012 Paypal banned ExtaBit from using their service which resulted in the company having to switch to i-Koruna in order to receive payments. For 180 days the company had to wait until the funds frozen on PayPal were released. As a result, ExtaBit's stock plummeted and confidence in the company was lost. Affiliates payments were delayed and new premium users were having difficulty signing up for new accounts. However, ExtaBit was able to continue accepting credit card payments thanks in part to the popular merchant Avangate.
On November 10th of 2012 the popular Webmaster community WJunction.com ultimately wound up banning ExtaBit from posting their service on the community. A high ranking WJunction staff member stated that "the service ExtaBit was terminated due to a failure to payout affiliates". This sparked the initial onset of financial woes for the company which lead into the present day. The ExtaBit Facebook & Twitter accounts were also were left unattended at the beginning of the companies financial crisis in the middle of 2012.
The demise of ExtaBit has been a long one in the making, one that started all the way back when MegaUpload was initially shutdown. The MPAA was able to have a massive effect of file-hosting businesses around the globe, one that would ultimately take precedent with PayPal and many other merchants who file lockers rely on.
The sudden shutdown and loss of service is believed to be a direct result of the financial status of the company. One that has been utterly wrecked over the years and has only gotten worse through the first 5 months of 2014. The service is estimated to have more than 7.5 petabytes of files stored. ExtaBit.com relies primarily on advertising and premium memberships in order to pay their extensive server fees and affiliates. Without a substantial amount of visitors the site isn't able to make the required payments.
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When comparing the ExtaBit of 2012 with the ExtaBit of 2014 we see two entirely different companies. At one time a bright & blossoming company that had millions of members only to overnight have the entire companies finances lost due to allegations that the main business platform was based entirely off of piracy. Today's ExtaBit is one that isn't much different from the one in 2012 or even 2013. The only difference is that the visitors are no longer interested in the service.
This shutdown is just another example of how the war against digital copyrights has harmed businesses around the world. ExtaBit, a file hosting company that responds to DMCA takedown requests through multiple DMCA agents has gone out of business due to alleged piracy concerns from big groups such as the MPAA. We now live in a world where if your customers create crimes, then your business is guilty as well. Imagine walking into a Walmart with stolen merchandise and then instead of you being penalized, the company, ie; Walmart is forced to shutdown.
We have reached out to several members of the ExtaBit staff via email and phone, but have yet to receive a response. This article will be updated with any information as it is received.
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