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Torrent Site Pirate Bay Spells Out Monero Mining Software Use

Torrent website The Pirate Bay is doubling down on its plan to use visitors’ processing power to mine crypto.

In a disclaimer recently added to the bottom of its homepage, the website said that “by entering TPB you agree to [monero] being mined using your CPU. If you don’t agree please leave now or install an adBlocker.”

That message comes months after the site’s administrators wrote in a September blog post that they were testing a monero Javascript miner in an effort to, as they put it, “get rid of all the ads.”

It was a controversial effort launched by an equally controversial website, which has drawn the ire of numerous national governments for its role in facilitating file-sharing online. Despite framing the test as limited in nature, many visitors cried foul as much of their computing power was harnessed for mining XMR. Bleeping Computer reported last October that Pirate Bay had brought back the feature.

The torrent site’s new approach represents a kind of so-called “cryptojacking” that is voluntary in nature. Indeed, other organizations, including the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), have turned to the Coinhive open-source software as a source of revenue (though in that case, the revenues are destined for philanthropic causes).

Other instances of “cryptojacking” have been far more malicious in nature, including a wide-ranging attack this spring which targeted websites running the Drupal content management system.

Image via Shutterstock

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Facebook Relaxes Ban, Accepts Some Crypto Ads

Facebook is easing its ban – sort of – on ads related to cryptocurrency.

The social media giant has launched a “cryptocurrency products and services onboarding request” form that will allow some companies to get their ads on the platform, according to a blog post published Tuesday.

Facebook, however, won’t allow advertisements for initial coin offerings or binary options. The prohibition on these remains in effect months after Facebook first took action against crypto-ads in a move that was followed by similar actions by Twitter, Google and other major sites.

The request sheet shows that the social media company wants specifics on the kinds of services companies wishing to advertise offer. For example, Facebook asks whether companies have the relevant licenses in order to operate, or if they are a publicly-listed company. Facebook has also published a legal addendum outlining its policy toward cryptocurrency ads.

Notably, the social media company suggested that its policy could see additional tweaks in the future.

Rob Leathern, product management director for Facebook, wrote in the blog post:

“Given these restrictions, not everyone who wants to advertise will be able to do so. But we’ll listen to feedback, look at how well this policy works and continue to study this technology so that, if necessary, we can revise it over time.”

The move has won early plaudits from the cryptocurrency PR space.

Trey Ditto, the founder of Ditto PR, a crypto public relations firm, described Facebook’s shift as “the first step in allowing credible blockchain projects, crypto companies and ICOs to get in front of new potential customers and investors.”

“This will be a big boost for Facebook advertising revenue as the majority of projects out there are interested – and have the money – to run paid ads,” Ditto added.

Facebook ads page image via Shutterstock

The leader in blockchain news, CoinDesk is a media outlet that strives for the highest journalistic standards and abides by a strict set of editorial policies. CoinDesk is an independent operating subsidiary of Digital Currency Group, which invests in cryptocurrencies and blockchain startups.