As it does at this time every year, TorrentFreak released stats for content that earned the dubious distinction of being the most pirated throughout the year, and you’ll never guess which TV show won out. OK, guessing the right answer is actually fairly simple, as the same show has retained the “most pirated” crown for the past four years.
According to the numbers, HBO’s Games of Thrones, which garnered 14.4 millions downloads, was the number one pirated show in 2015, followed by The Walking Dead and The Big Bang Theory. I wonder how much pirating was affected by the introduction of HBO Now? Food for thought as we ease into 2016.
Unsurprisingly, downloads occurred most frequently in the first week after a show aired, TorrentFreak said. What is surprising, however, is how the 14.4 million downloads actually exceeds traditional viewership, listed at 8.1 million U.S. TV viewers. That’s a lot of eyeballs on one show, pirated or not, and goes to show how supremely popular Game of Thrones is.
TorrentFreak’s data also reveals that although the streaming market is becoming stronger, piracy continues to rise. If you’ve been keeping up on the news, you’ll know that films like The Hateful Eight and The Revenant—among about 40 different films—were leaked even before their release dates, which proves that piracy is still a huge problem for Hollywood.
Rounding out the top ten list of most pirated shows includes Arrow, The Flash, Mr. Robot, Vikings, Supergirl, The Blacklist and Suits.