Gnarly-Repacks is requesting donations for the renewal bill for their site and I know FitGirl sporadically makes requests for donations as well. It makes me curious what range of expenses do sites like these incur and what they are.

I do vaguely recall The Pirate Bay 2013 documentary TPB AFK talking a bit about their revenue but I don’t know if they talked much about their expenses.

  • Fedora@lemmy.haigner.me
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    6 months ago

    Hard if not impossible to say. It depends on what they host. Hosting also gets real expensive if they make poor choices.

    If they choose to host their WordPress piracy website on WordPress.com, then that’s a shit idea. They’re overpriced as hell, even with an annual discount. 300 € annually is WordPress.com’s discounted price for a somewhat usable, but still restricted WordPress instance. Furthermore, pirates face the risk that hosting providers terminate their account and keep the money, so long billing periods are risky.

    They accept that risk to save some cash, and use WordPress.com. Okay, now what? WordPress.com terminates the account at the start of the new billing period and keeps the money. How sweet. Pay 300 € for the privilege of another restricted WordPress instance. Annual spending: 600 € for what could’ve been 21.12 € annually with a dumb simple Hetzner webspace.

    You may think that this is impossible, nobody is dumb enough to spend 600 € when a 21.12 € solution is good enough, right? Look no further than any company that lifts and shifts apps into the cloud that weren’t designed to run in the cloud. Expensive as hell for no fucking reason other than it’s in the cloud now. Or this poor fella who got a $ 30 gift card for saving their employer $ 500,000 with five clicks.

    • NuXCOM_90Percent@lemmy.zip
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      6 months ago

      300 euros annually is not horribly overpriced for what wordpress provides.

      50 gigs of storage, “unlimited visitors and bandwidth” and five nines uptime costs money. Those all cost money and having the staff on call to maintain it is very much worth the price. I haven’t priced anything out recently, but 300 euros a year seems “reasonable” for the convenience aspects.

      That said, if you don’t need the five nines of uptime you can get away with dropping a lot of that. I tend to not check the actual group sites all that often, but a quick check of Fitgirl’s site looks like it is blogs and links. Probably gets hit with a LOT of DDOSes and attacks on the regular but not much bandwidth needs.

      Because people will very often vastly overpay for what they need. But this seems “reasonable” for what it is and, if you need it, having one check to write a month/year is likely worth whatever overhead wordpress throws on top (which, considering the feature set, probably isn’t all that much).

      But yeah, you hit the nail on the head with hosting sites likely to drop piracy sites.

      • Fedora@lemmy.haigner.me
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        6 months ago

        I didn’t know that. Yeah, that sounds reasonable if they need it. It’s probably best to view my original comment from the perspective that they don’t need these benefits.

  • WarmApplePieShrek@lemmy.dbzer0.com
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    6 months ago

    If it has a lot of users but no downloads probably runs on a $50-$100 dedi server

    If it has no users and no downloads probably a $5 VPS

    If it has downloads then a lot

  • nix@midwest.social
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    6 months ago

    One thing to consider is that it’s not just hosting a site, it’s all the work they do to do the DRM removal and the repack. That takes time, which might be time they could be using to earn money. So getting some money from their work can help incentivize it.

    Hard to say what that actually boils down to for each person, if they’re not releasing any expenses info (site costs, time spent per project, etc). If you’re thinking about donating, I’d think of it more as a “thank you” gift for their work than anything else, and give an amount you wouldn’t miss.

  • southsamurai@sh.itjust.works
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    6 months ago

    Now, I’m not talking about exactly the same thing here. And I don’t actually run any sites at this point in my life.

    That being said, I considered setting up a site to host my stuff. Mostly writing, some art, just a kind of vanity project that would let me distribute files to friends and family with an easy link instead of having to send them files when requested.

    So, I could have used any hosting service since it’s all legal files. I own all the copy rights, and that means the price starts out pretty low. I never looked into what the less stringent services would cost.

    But, it worked out that it would cost me about 300 a year between domain name, file hosting, and ssl certificate, etc at the cheapest rates I could find.

    Which is why I didn’t do it, lol. It’s way cheaper to just deal with the hassles of sending files via telegram or whatever. That only costs time.

    I’ve a friend that runs a site for their business though. He’s shelling out about a grand a year, and doesn’t host any files for download. That’s with some fancy templates, and some kind of security thing that I’ve never asked about the specifics of. He was a bit surprised how much it cost.

    So I suspect that if someone wanted to actually host a large amount of files like movies, games, and music would need, they’d be looking at that range as a minimum cost. The storage space is fairly expensive once you’re into terabytes, or so I was told.

    But I don’t think the repack folks do it that way. They use torrents, which means things are cheaper. So the costs of that are probably closer to the bottom end of the scale where I would have been

    Again, this is not the same thing, and I’m guesstimating off of research I did years ago, so don’t take it as some kind of expert talking.

  • FluffyPotato@lemmy.world
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    6 months ago

    It depends on a lot of things. Something self-hosted would just cost the power and Internet you are already paying for but if you’re renting the hosting and maybe even get development for your site it could cost a ton.

  • thirteene@lemmy.world
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    6 months ago

    As others have mentioned it really depends on a lot of factors.
    Domain name ~$15/year Offshore server providers usually start around $30/server/month and quickly raise to thousands. Corporate application techs are usually $2k-200k/month depending on size. Anything that requires a GPU would be a custom build, dell power edge is a powerful machine you can lookup retail for. Storage Amazon s3 is $0.022 per GB/month. Keep in mind that providers usually have redundant copies in case of failure and often provide multiple releases codexes, resolutions and providing a lot more than people are requesting You often have to pay for networking as well which scales exponentially. Email accounts are usually $10/user/month any time would come from a senior developer ~120+k/year. But they are likely full stack developers so it might be closer to 200k in the US. You also need all the supporting licenses $0 in this case And servers to run development environments (double the costs above!!!) And infrastructure like Jenkins/monitoring which can scale high as well, but likely <$20k/year

    Edit:The prices I quoted are for real businesses, and businesses usually negotiate rates and have discounts to close deals. This is the price for running a technical service, the fact you are disputing $5/year means you have no intent on having a real conversation about hosting fees. This is to ballpark a price for op. Stop being pedantic

    • Gooey0210@sh.itjust.works
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      6 months ago

      Everything is way overpriced

      Why would somebody need to pay $10 for an email?

      Why would one hire a developer when you’re a developer yourself?

      Why would one use amazon buckets when they are overpriced?

      Domain names from ~$15, since when?

      And the offshore servers, you can find those for even cheaper and more powerful than $5 (or many cores and 16gb ram for $5)

      Also, why would you pay for jenkins when you can host it or something similar?

    • Fedora@lemmy.haigner.me
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      6 months ago

      Domain name ~$15/year

      .com starts at $10.28/year

      Offshore server providers usually start around $30/server/month and quickly raise to thousands

      Proxy everything from cheap offshore servers to servers from legit hosting providers with fair pricing.

      Corporate application techs are usually $2k-200k/month depending on size

      Ops are a tech themselves, work with techs they split donations with or pay or nothing at all, or become a tech themselves as time goes on.

      Anything that requires a GPU would be a custom build, dell power edge is a powerful machine you can lookup retail for

      True, but a website like FitGirl Repacks needs no GPU.

      Storage Amazon s3 is $0.022 per GB/month

      Don’t use Amazon S3 if pricing is a concern.

      Keep in mind that providers […] often provide multiple releases codexes, resolutions and providing a lot more than people are requesting

      I’m not sure what to say about that? They sure can do that for images, but not for game repacks.

      You often have to pay for networking as well which scales exponentially

      Pirates don’t build on-prem data centers, they rent servers or services.

      Email accounts are usually $10/user/month any time would come from a senior developer ~120+k/year

      No, they can re-use whatever server they use for email. Why pay a senior developer ~120+k/year for email?

      But they are likely full stack developers so it might be closer to 200k in the US

      If a developer works with a pirate, they don’t get paid a wage. They’re part of the operation, and get paid depending on the donations or nothing at all.

      And servers to run development environments (double the costs above!!!)

      The development environment can be on the server or even on the dev’s laptop. They already paid for that, so $0.

      And infrastructure like Jenkins/monitoring which can scale high as well, but likely <$20k/year

      Put it on the server. Scalability isn’t practical for pirates to begin with. If they lay all eggs in one basket for maximum scalability and cost savings, then the cloud provider can end their entire operation.

  • Valmond@lemmy.mindoki.com
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    6 months ago

    Person spending days and weeks to make content, repacks it and makes it available for free.

    Person downloading and using it for free: why are you asking for money?

    .

    Anyone can spin up a website for cheap and serve torrents for the heavy lifting. At least when you know people will seed your stuff, which is the case it seems.

    Maybe the website takes a big load, IDK, but did you consider that asking for funds for the site isn’t (only) for paying the hoster? It’s for paying for the site, for supper, pc parts and the games, work, among others. Seems to be quite exclusive work too.

    I’m not trying to do a moral judgement here, just trying to clear up the confusion.

    • Corroded@leminal.spaceOP
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      6 months ago

      I donate to them regularly because I respect and appreciate what they do. I asked because I was curious about the logistics behind it and how sustainable it is (if they rely on donations versus ads or pay out of their own pocket).

      Gnarly-Repacks for example says

      I pocket none of this, as every donation sent will only be used for hosting costs so this site stays up to keep providing you with quality releases.

      on the donation page of their site and as someone who has minimal experience running a website it made me curious.

    • southsamurai@sh.itjust.works
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      6 months ago

      I think they were more asking about what the costs are, not what generates the costs or any kind of complaint about paying for such things.

      • Valmond@lemmy.mindoki.com
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        6 months ago

        Dude it’s a piracy community. People do it for free. Some people ask for help to continue doing it.

        That’s it.

        • southsamurai@sh.itjust.works
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          6 months ago

          I’m not asking asking this as a put-down, but is English not your first language? Allow me to try and say it all differently.

          What you’re saying is that the people perform the necessary tasks without expecting did be paid for their labor, but some ask contributions for it.

          What OP was asking is what those people (the ones running a site to maken the fruit of their labor available to others) have to pay in order to make it available.

          We’re well aware that the labor is possibly free.

          But it still costs someone money to host a site with a domain name and the ability for other people to download anything. That’s what OP was asking about, those costs to the person providing the files that get pirated by others.

          That’s it.