Game of Thrones has been one of the most successful TV series in 2015. Aside from its controversial scenes and mind-boggling narrative, Game of Thrones has reached a new peak after claiming the top spot for being the "most pirated show on earth."
According to Torrentfreak, George R.R. Martin's TV adaptation has exceeded the downloads for The Walking Dead and The Big Bang Theory. With an outstanding 14.4 million downloads in BitTorrent, the show is far beyond the 6.9 million and 4.4 million downloads for The Walking Dead and The Big Bang Theory.
The popularity of the show is one of the things to consider in this feat, but it has been reported that since the quality of the pirates has increased, downloaders have been encouraged to watch the series via torrent.
Though 720p and 1080p versions have been highly downloaded during the past few months, the 480p copies are still the most popular.
Game of Thrones continued to rise to the top after breaking another record in the piracy industry. It has broken the record for having the highest numbers of peers, with 258,131 people sharing the same Torrent file at the same time.
HBO Strives to Counter PiracyWith the large amount of piracy activity for Game of Thrones, HBO has done its best to reduce piracy. One of the things they did was a simultaneous airing for Game of Thrones Season 5. It has been reported that the previous seasons received a higher number of download because of the gap in the air dates.
In countries outside U.S., they would have a couple of weeks (or months) delay compared to the U.S. airing so this paved the way for pirates to share the show in torrent ahead of time.
HBO also implemented HBO Now, which aimed to reach audiences that do not have cable subscriptions. By purchasing HBO Now, they will get licensed streaming for HBO shows like Game of Thrones.
HBO Now also offers a 30-day trial, a hefty but normal trial for subscription services nowadays. They also partnered with Roku so Roku players can simply add HBO Now channels to their devices. Unfortunately, this service is only available in the U.S. and certain U.S. territories "where a high-speed broadband connection is available."
This limitation in the geographical reach of HBO Now could be one of the factors in why fans still continue to patronize piracy. Though local cable companies have been airing Game of Thrones in their HBO subscriptions, the time slots are still limited.
HBO also hit another roadblock when the first four episodes were leaked online. The season premiere content was supposed to be for critics' review. Because of this incident, HBO has supported a purely online preview system.
GoT Season 6 Is Much-AnticipatedEven with all the piracy, HBO is still going strong with its live viewer's statistics. It still holds around 20 million viewers per episode. It also won 12 awards during the Emmys.
The fans are still very loyal to the show. George R.R. Martin has definitely left a mark with his "murders" of the show's beloved characters. One of the earliest deaths was Ned Stark's. After Stark's death, the show went completely ballistic and the Seven Kingdoms seemed to be in complete chaos.Fortunately, the fans can anticipate a renewal in Season 6. Game of Thrones Season 6 will be based on Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire and it will focus on Westeros preparing for a new winter.
Controversies about Queen Cersei Lannister will also unfold in a messy trial that fans can look out for when Game of Thrones come back in April 2016.
[Image via HBO]