ExtraTorrent shut itself down this week. It was the second-largest torrent site after The Pirate Bay, known best for its massive index of entertainment content downloadable using the BitTorrent protocol. Despite the inevitable rumors, there is no reason to believe the site will be making a return.
The site was taken down with little explanation. ExtraTorrent’s administrators did not give a warning and simply took the service offline, leaving behind a short message telling users that all data will be erased and warning them to stay away from the expected clones that will show up in the weeks to come:
ExtraTorrent has shut down permanently
ExtraTorrent with all mirrors goes offline. We permanently erase all data.
Stay away from fake ExtraTorrent websites and clones.
Thx to all ET supporters and torrent community.
ET was a place to be….
May 17, 2017
We may never know the cause of the abrupt shutdown, but it’s likely that legal pressure played a role. Either the administrators were threatened or they grew tired of playing the cat-and-mouse game. All ExtraTorrent’s domains (including extratorrent.cc, extratorrent.one, and extra.to) redirect to the same message.
In November 2015, ExtraTorrent lost three of the domain names it used for mirrors, although it ended up quickly replacing them with new ones. But there was an even more recent event: In March 2017, the site’s main domain name was shut down by its registrar. Although its backup domains continued to function, it’s possible ExtraTorrent decided enough was enough.
A number of popular torrent sites have been taken offline in the past year, including Torrentz and KickassTorrents (KAT). The former was shut down by its operators in August 2016 after 13 years of service. KAT went down in July 2016 after eight years of operation, following the arrest of its founder. The Pirate Bay remains the most resilient site, going strong for 14 years now.