‘Game of Thrones’ Draws Torrent Piracy

    May 9, 2012
    Chris Gabbard
    Comments are off for this post.

As Forbes’ Andy Greenberg is reporting, HBO’s Game of Thrones is a huge hit in the file-sharing community, and is on track to be the most downloaded show of 2012.

Accorrding to BitTorrent-tracking and analysis firm Big Champagne, the second season of the shaow has been downloaded more than 25 million times last month. Downloading peaked after April 30th’s episode, with 2.5 million downloads in a day.

By TorrentFreaks estimation, the show was second to Dexter last year in terms of total downloads. Game of Thrones was downloaded 3.4 million times last year, almost 40,000 more viewers than the actual broadcast on HBO. But if you look at the statistics of shows airing on network television, you notice they have a lot more viewers than they have downloads. It seems people who cannot afford to pay for premium cable shows are much more apt to just download them for free anyway.

My solution would be to offer these shows as part of a side package, so customers can see the shows they want without having to pay for cable and the premium service, which can cost $60 or more per month. A subscription to just Game of Thrones could cost a lot less and lure a lot of non-subscribers away from piracy.

This comic from the Oatmeal summarizes the dilemma well.

The Oatmeal

Oatmeal 2

Oatmeal Part 3

[Source: Forbes Via: Big Champagne}

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  • Dan

    Amen to this point of view. I had purchased the entire first season on iTunes and became instantly hooked. When season 2 came out it wasn’t available from iTunes or any other place that I could find online and didn’t want to have to buy a lock-in, with premium cable offerings for a year at $60 a month to get the HBO upgrade.

    I always advocate honest pay per viewing, however, for the majority, why do we have to wait until a season is over before we can purchase it legally?

    Yes, I succumbed to torrenting each episode of the second season and absolutely love doing so. Quick, easy and commercial free. Streaming from the iTunes movie store to my Apple TV isn’t even as good – no stalls or stutters.

    However, I believe strongly that this content is so good that the producers, actors, writers, creative people etc. who are creating this great series need to be properly compensated and not at the leisure of money grubbing networks. When the following seasons eventually show up on the iTunes music store I will be purchasing them there to keep my conscience clear and keep the content coming.