... then how do companies like YouTorrent get funding and survive?
If record companies and movie companies alike find file sharing akin to theft, then how do companies like this get a following and become part of the cultural zeitgeist? I'll tell you how. The consumer likes them. The stats are impressive; live for 3 months. 2.7 million unique visitors in February. The cost to run the site; $500 per month.
I did a quick search on YouTorrent for Pearl Jam (which is my default first search on everything) and it came back with 319 results ranging from concert videos to albums to DVD-copies, some of which were posted 5 years ago and some within the last hour. Why would I do a search like that, other than to test the service? Because I can. It's that simple.
The company was written up in Business Week in an article on March 24th. Business Week is a pretty main stream publication so it's not a matter of some obscure little company finding a way to beat the system. This is the system. As long as consumers want access to information for free, these systems will survive and thrive. Personally, I pay for all my music and movies. I'm really old-school like that. Thats why iTunes is now the number music retailer in the US.