In what is certainly a very unusual move, online file-sharing giant RapidShare has chosen to deliberately slow its download speed for non-registered users.
The site denies that this is simply a tactic to drive users to its registered, paying users. Instead, it claims the decision was made to make the service unattractive to the “abusive” pirates that have flocked to it following the high-profile closure of Megaupload.
“On January 19th Megaupload was shut down by the FBI. Shortly thereafter, several other file hosters curbed their services or entirely stopped their operations,” a statement released to TorrentFreak reads.
“RapidShare has been faced with a severe increase in free user traffic and unfortunately also in the amount of abuse of our service ever since, suggesting that quite a few copyright infringers have chosen RapidShare as their new hoster of choice for their illegal activities.
“We have thus decided to take a painful yet effective step: to reduce the download speed for free users. We are confident that this will make RapidShare very unpopular amongst pirates and thus drive the abusive traffic away.”