Following the FBI shutdown of MegaUpload and dramatic arrest of its founder Kim Dotcom, file-sharing website BTjunkie has voluntarily closed down.
While not involved in any legal action, BTjunkie issued a message on its site on 6 February stating that it is time to move on, possibly for fear of being shut down or face legal action.
A message on the BTjunkie site reads: "This is the end of the line my friends. The decision does not come easy, but we've decided to voluntarily shut down. We've been fighting for years for your right to communicate, but it's time to move on. It's been an experience of a lifetime, we wish you all the best!"
BTjunkie's founder has told website TorrentFreak that the decision to shut down was not easy, but the recent legal action against MegaUpload and The Pirate Bay played an important role.
MegaUpload was shut down in January as the site's owner, Kim Dotcom, was arrested at his luxury New Zealand mansion following an investigation by the FBI. Dotcom has been refused bail as he is believed to be a flight risk.
BTjunkie, which was founded in 2005, is one of dozens of BitTorrent websites which provide likes to torrent files; these in turn let users download files which may be legitimate, but are often pirated copies of films, TV programmes and music.
The site's owner told TorrentFreak that he believed there is a future for other BitTorrent websites. "I really do hope so, the war is far from over for sure," he said.
BTjunkie has never been directly targeted by copyright holders, but the site was reported to the US Trade Representatives in November 2011 and, along with The Pirate Bay, RapidShare and uTorrent, the site is censored by Google in search results.
While not the most popular torrent websites, BTjunkie was, according to web ranking service Alexa, the 392nd most popular website in February 2012; for comparison, The Pirate Bay is ranked 75th.