Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 21st May 2012 04:03 UTC
Multimedia, AV "With over 3 million downloads per episode, the HBO hit series Game of Thrones is without doubt the most pirated TV-show of the season. Data gathered by TorrentFreak shows that most of the pirates come from Australia, while London tops the list of pirate cities. But why have these people turned to BitTorrent?" Because in order to get it legally, I have to take a monthly subscription costing me €15 per month. So instead, I buy the season box sets as they come out, and download them every Monday morning in the meantime.
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I can't get HBO
by BeamishBoy on Mon 21st May 2012 04:31 UTC
BeamishBoy
Member since:
2010-10-27

So I download it every Monday after it's aired in the US.

Of course, given that I live in the UK I could always get a subscription to Sky Atlantic and watch it there. However, there are several problems with that:

1) I *really* don't want to give Rupert Murdoch any money. He's already done enough damage to my country without me helping him to do more.

2) Even if I didn't mind Rupert and his offspring, I'd have to pay £20 a month for a subscription to Sky. Game of Thrones is the *only* thing on those channels that I want to watch and I'm not paying £240 a year for the privilege, especially when I already pay £150 a year for a TV license and have access to all of the channels on FreeViewHD free of charge.

3) I simply don't value television enough to want to pay a monthly subscription for it.

Reply Score: 3

RE: I can't get HBO
by Morgan on Mon 21st May 2012 06:53 UTC in reply to "I can't get HBO"
Morgan Member since:
2005-06-29

Forgive my USA ignorance, but I don't think I'll ever understand the need for a "license" to watch TV. A license to drive? Sure, cars can be deadly if you don't know what you're doing. A license to own a gun? Why not!

But a license to operate a television, a device which is nothing more than a visual broadcast receiver? That's a level of governmental control and intrusion that simply blows my mind. I'd almost rather see a requirement for a license to operate a cellular phone (a radio transmitter) than that. I realize it's nothing more than a way to further tax the citizens, but I just find the entire concept demeaning.

Though I'm positive that the ludicrous things my own country does to its citizens can provoke a similar reaction in others.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: I can't get HBO
by paolo on Mon 21st May 2012 07:01 UTC in reply to "RE: I can't get HBO"
paolo Member since:
2010-06-03

Brit here - It's not really a licence like a driving licence, it's more like a tax under a different name.

There are plenty of arguments for/against, but for me the way its structured means we get an independent national broadcaster funded by the public that can produce some fantastic material that doesn't rely either on being a dumb audience winner (X Factor anyone?) and doesn't have to interrupt its programmes every 15mins with crappy adverts.

Reply Score: 5

RE[3]: I can't get HBO
by Morgan on Mon 21st May 2012 07:11 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: I can't get HBO"
Morgan Member since:
2005-06-29

That does make sense, I guess it's just the terminology that gets me going. Why not call a tax a tax and a license a license? But if the expense and hassle are worth the quality programming as you say, then that's good.

And I must say, some of the most entertaining and fun stuff I've ever seen comes from British television.

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: I can't get HBO
by Laurence on Mon 21st May 2012 07:59 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: I can't get HBO"
Laurence Member since:
2007-03-26

That does make sense, I guess it's just the terminology that gets me going. Why not call a tax a tax and a license a license? But if the expense and hassle are worth the quality programming as you say, then that's good.

And I must say, some of the most entertaining and fun stuff I've ever seen comes from British television.

It's not really a licence as such, it's a tax. However it's only taxed against people who own a tuned TV set - which is probably why they call it a licence.

I wouldn't say the BBC produces the best quality shows, but they do produce shows that likely wouldn't get produced under other pricing models such shows that have relatively minor appeal (eg physics documentaries that are not as heavily dumbed down, educational curriculum-based programs for students and teachers, near-impartial press reporting (which is impressive for a government station!), etc).

The TV Licence also pays for radio stations and even the BBC News' website. Essentially anything owned by the BBC is paid for via the TV Licence.

There are big debates over in the UK about whether this tax is justifiable. Mostly I'm in favour of it but I can't completely relate to those why are not. Particularly with the way how the 'Beeb' collect these taxes (essentially if you don't pay then you are assumed to be breaking the law and even bullied to the point of paying it even when you're legally not supposed to).

Edited 2012-05-21 07:59 UTC

Reply Score: 4

RE[5]: I can't get HBO
by nutt on Mon 21st May 2012 10:59 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: I can't get HBO"
nutt Member since:
2011-06-22

It's not really a licence as such, it's a tax. However it's only taxed against people who own a tuned TV set - which is probably why they call it a licence.

Nah, you still call car tax and tobacco tax taxes, even though only people who own cars and buy tobacco are taxed.
At least here in Sweden, the reason is a much more silly one. The idea is that if it's called a tax, then the TV station gets their money from the government, meaning the government would have monetary control over the station (which, according to this line of thinking, prevents the station from having full editorial control). This is a kind of stupid argument because while it is true that the government gets to decide how to spend the tax money, they also get to decide the size of the TV license fee...

Reply Score: 3

RE[5]: I can't get HBO
by foregam on Mon 21st May 2012 11:47 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: I can't get HBO"
foregam Member since:
2010-11-17

So how does the British IRS know whether you've tuned your TV? Do you swear an affidavit or what? Presumably one could buy a TV set to play with a Raspberry Pi, for example.

Reply Score: 1

RE[6]: I can't get HBO
by WereCatf on Mon 21st May 2012 11:52 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: I can't get HBO"
WereCatf Member since:
2006-02-15

So how does the British IRS know whether you've tuned your TV? Do you swear an affidavit or what? Presumably one could buy a TV set to play with a Raspberry Pi, for example.


The tax-thing is similar to what is used here in Finland, and well, there are inspectors that travel around the country at random intervals and visit people's homes to see if they have equipment capable of receiving TV-signal. This equipment may be as much a television as it may be e.g. a tuner-card, ie. you better not own anything such if you do not want to pay, even if you do not actually use it.

You *can* buy a TV or such and not use it for watching TV-broadcasts, but you have to take it to a professional that disables the radio and signs a paper proving you've done this. Then you just show this signature to the inspector to prove that your TV isn't capable of receiving transmissions.

Reply Score: 4

RE[6]: I can't get HBO
by spudley99 on Mon 21st May 2012 12:03 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: I can't get HBO"
spudley99 Member since:
2009-03-25

So how does the British IRS know whether you've tuned your TV? Do you swear an affidavit or what? Presumably one could buy a TV set to play with a Raspberry Pi, for example.


They're called the HMRC (Her Magesty's Revenue Collection).

They know who has a TV because the shops selling them are required to take your details and provide it to the HMRC. (that includes any TV-capable equipment such as a TV tuner card for a PC, though it doesn't [currently] cover internet-based viewing)

And yes, you can notify them that you don't have a TV at your address.

But by default, they pretty much assume any given address has a TV unless they've been notified otherwise.

I had a period a number of years ago when I didn't have a TV. They sent me the standard "You don't have a license" letter, and I sent the form back with the "I don't have a TV" box ticked. I didn't hear from them again until I bought another TV, about a year and a half later.

Yes, I agree it's not ideal, but in my experience they don't hassle you unless they have a reason to. And I'll reiterate my previous statement that I believe the license fee gives excellent value for money when compared with the subscription TV services.

Reply Score: 2

RE[7]: I can't get HBO
by Laurence on Mon 21st May 2012 12:49 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: I can't get HBO"
Laurence Member since:
2007-03-26


I had a period a number of years ago when I didn't have a TV. They sent me the standard "You don't have a license" letter, and I sent the form back with the "I don't have a TV" box ticked. I didn't hear from them again until I bought another TV, about a year and a half later.

Yes, I agree it's not ideal, but in my experience they don't hassle you unless they have a reason to.


You've been lucky then. Or maybe the licence fee collectors have gotten more aggressive in recent years. But either way, everyone I know without a licence (which is surprisingly quite a few) has been hounded, given court summons and so forth - despite them all being 100% entitled not to pay. (they either had a TV to game but didn't watch TV or other such like).

Edited 2012-05-21 12:52 UTC

Reply Score: 3

RE[7]: I can't get HBO
by zima on Mon 28th May 2012 23:59 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: I can't get HBO"
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

They know who has a TV because the shops selling them are required to take your details and provide it to the HMRC. (that includes any TV-capable equipment such as a TV tuner card for a PC

So, I wonder how many "sometimes viewers" bring TV tuners for their PCs from abroad...

BTW bringing stuff from abroad (cigarettes, most notably...) and ways of encouraging people to pay, there was this "commercial" of sorts directed at immigrants (with the overall message of ~"not being a citizen (or is it 'subject'? ;) ) doesn't exempt you from this obligation") ...so hilariously bad that it found its way to at least one (mine) of "origin" countries: at least the "Polish" of collector only sounded like Polish to average English-speaking person, I suppose, but it... well, it was an incomprehensible gibberish. I have my doubts about how well it worked... ;)

Edited 2012-05-29 00:09 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: I can't get HBO
by steogede2 on Tue 22nd May 2012 00:40 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: I can't get HBO"
steogede2 Member since:
2007-08-17

It's not really a licence as such, it's a tax.


It is a licence in the sense of a software licence - which strictly speaking is the same sense as a driving licence, gun licence... Easier to relate it to a software licence though.

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: I can't get HBO
by MrWeeble on Mon 21st May 2012 18:08 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: I can't get HBO"
MrWeeble Member since:
2007-04-18

The reason is mainly historical. Back in the early days of broadcasting (the era of Marconi) there was very little difference between transmitting equipment and receiving equipment, and to prevent the airwaves getting cluttered it was necessary to obtain a license to operate a "Wireless Telegraphy Station". By the 20s, the majority of "stations" became domestic radios, which were incapable of transmitting, but by this time it had become a nice little earner for the government, so they instituted a separate broadcast receiving license, which is a tax in all but name (legally it is classified as a tax). In order to make it more palatable when the government took over the British Broadcasting Company and formed the British Broadcasting Corporation, it became a hypothecated tax to fund public broadcasting.

So we all know it is a tax, but are happy to call it something else because the UK tends to be reluctant to change things just to tidy things up

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: I can't get HBO
by coren on Mon 21st May 2012 10:09 UTC in reply to "RE: I can't get HBO"
coren Member since:
2006-05-22

Here in Italy too the terminology is misleading. Our "RAI licence fee" is a tax like the others but has the goal of financing the public television and radio broadcasting. This allows in *theory* the production of some interesting programs not share-related with deep cultural or reporting content or national "free" information (in the tree main national channels all main political areas with representation in the Parliament are -or should be- represented, regardless they are majority or not). The *practice* is different though and we had a very bad evidence during the last two decades of that, at least here in my country.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: I can't get HBO
by spudley99 on Mon 21st May 2012 11:05 UTC in reply to "RE: I can't get HBO"
spudley99 Member since:
2009-03-25

Forgive my USA ignorance, but I don't think I'll ever understand the need for a "license" to watch TV.


I can understand that sentiment. I don't agree with you, but I can easily see where you're coming from. I'd like to give you my counter arguments, to help you understand where we're coming from:


The cost of the license pays for the BBC (all their TV channels, plus radio, web etc), as well as subsidising Channel 4 and several other media. It also covers some of the cost of the terrestrial transmission network, which means that even the non-subsidised "free to air" channels are benefiting from it.

I'm not Welsh or Scots, but the BBC and Channel 4 between them also provides the only TV output in the Welsh and Gaelic languages. Not something I'd watch, but I believe the world would be poorer without them, and they certainly wouldn't be made by a commercial company.

The BBC also provides broadcast services for Parliament. I consider this to be very valuable service for the democratic process, but it only works due to the non-political, non-commercial nature of the BBC. (see http://news.bbc.co.uk/democracylive/hi)

So there is significant value in all that output, which is worth paying for. Personally, I'm very happy with the value for money provided by the license fee. I just think of it as a subscription to the "free to air" TV services. It makes for good value even just for that, before you even count the additional services it provides.

The complete lack of advertising on the BBC channels is an added bonus that, frankly, would be worth paying the license for on its own -- I've tried watching TV in the US, and I just couldn't cope with the constant interruptions. The adverts completely ruined my favourite show, and I had to give up an extra half hour of my time to watch it compared to watching it on the BBC.

Given that, I really don't see any need to pay a subscription for the commercial services (ie either Sky or Virgin). Sure, they offer channels and shows I can't get otherwise, but there is sufficient good quality TV on the standard service that I don't miss them.

If there are any shows or films I really want to watch, I can always buy the DVD a few months later anyway - with the quantity I'd want to buy, it's still cheaper than subscribing to Sky, and I get to choose when to watch. Plus no ads.

The only thing still missing is all the live sport that Sky have snapped up. But I'm not really a sports fan anyway. Certainly not enough to pay the kinds of premiums Sky thinks it can get away with.

Oh, and no I haven't pirated Game Of Thrones. If I want it, I'll see if I can buy the DVD.

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: I can't get HBO
by Neolander on Mon 21st May 2012 15:47 UTC in reply to "RE: I can't get HBO"
Neolander Member since:
2010-03-08

In my country, I think they call it a tax (AV tax), not a license. Basically, the point is that even if you want to watch "free" broadcasts, you still have to pay for the underlying infrastructure costs.

Edited 2012-05-21 15:51 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: I can't get HBO
by ashes_786 on Mon 21st May 2012 15:47 UTC in reply to "RE: I can't get HBO"
ashes_786 Member since:
2011-10-22

I suppose it does sound stupid to have to pay a TV license fee but its that fee that is used to fund the BBC and imho the BBC is better than all the other UK channels put together plus it has no commercials!

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: I can't get HBO
by zima on Mon 28th May 2012 23:53 UTC in reply to "RE: I can't get HBO"
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

At my place it's described by a word which seems to translate to "subscription" ...frank, I suppose.

And it's definitely worth it for the non-shitty stuff that gets on public TV ...or radio, the more or less only decent radio station ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polskie_Radio_Program_III ), actually promoting good music (even if mostly during my evening hours and nights; and it's at least more bearable during the day).
Meanwhile, don't NPR or PBS seem always underfunded?

Reply Score: 2

RE: I can't get HBO
by Ford Prefect on Mon 21st May 2012 08:12 UTC in reply to "I can't get HBO"
Ford Prefect Member since:
2006-01-16

So why not wait until they sell the box?

Is it your citizen's right to freeload the content that others pay a subscription fee for?

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: I can't get HBO
by arpan on Mon 21st May 2012 08:51 UTC in reply to "RE: I can't get HBO"
arpan Member since:
2006-07-30

So why not wait until they sell the box?


The question is, whom does this benefit? Whether you watch it now, or after you get the box, the producers still get your money.

What this article is basically saying, is that if the producers made it possible for people outside the US to just buy an episode of a TV show, or subscribe to it online and get it when it is released on TV, many of them would pay for it, instead of pirating it.

It's just good business sense to sell what people wanna buy. Refusing to sell it, and then whining about piracy is just stupid.

Reply Score: 5

RE[3]: I can't get HBO
by Ford Prefect on Mon 21st May 2012 08:58 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: I can't get HBO"
Ford Prefect Member since:
2006-01-16

You are right arpan, the business model looks outdated. I would have bought much more media myself if it would be accessible in digital form under reasonable cost and constraints.

However be reminded that it is the cable network providers that do the financing of these series, to the extend that they decide which ones get produced or not. It is natural for the rightholders then to give priority to the cable networks and not infer in their business models by selling the episodes "early". You may call this stupid, I prefer the word "outdated", but that's how the system currently works and I assume you cannot produce a series like this with Kickstarter just as of today.

All I wanted to point out is the stark self-justification that seeps from the comments here. It sounds like as if people would have no chance other than pirating to survive.

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: I can't get HBO
by AWdrius on Mon 21st May 2012 10:41 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: I can't get HBO"
AWdrius Member since:
2006-07-18

I am not sure if it is correct to call this a "pirating". You download episode by episode as they are released. OK. Now after season is finished you go and by a boxset even if you have already seen all the episodes. So where is piracy in this? If you won't buy a boxset at the end then sure, but in this instance there should be a new term for it. Postpay? (-.

Reply Score: 3

RE[5]: I can't get HBO
by Ford Prefect on Mon 21st May 2012 11:16 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: I can't get HBO"
Ford Prefect Member since:
2006-01-16

That's like saying "I download this movie right now and I'm gonna buy the DVD a year later when it's cheap enough"...

Reply Score: 3

RE[6]: I can't get HBO
by shmerl on Mon 21st May 2012 15:49 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: I can't get HBO"
shmerl Member since:
2010-06-08

It may be formally incorrect, but the point was to show HBO foolishness in not allowing to purchase the content right away without subscription fees.

Reply Score: 3

RE[7]: I can't get HBO
by jptros on Mon 21st May 2012 19:57 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: I can't get HBO"
jptros Member since:
2005-08-26

If HBO would allow people to subscribe without going to a cable provider they would still be doing better. For example, if I could watch the HBO content on HBOGO through my roku box without having to pay comcast who doesn't allow me to even use HBOGO on my roku box I would probably get a HBO subscription. I had one through comcast at one point but I cancelled it partly because comcast would not allow me to watch HBOGO on my roku which is unacceptable so I just cancelled the service. Voting with my wallet I guess you could say.

Any way, I haven't downloaded any of the game of thrones episodes however I would like to see season 2 but I don't care enough to take the risk. I also don't care enough to pay for a subscription to HBO that comcast limits how I can use.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: I can't get HBO
by WereCatf on Mon 21st May 2012 11:14 UTC in reply to "RE: I can't get HBO"
WereCatf Member since:
2006-02-15

So why not wait until they sell the box?


I personally would like to buy the actual boxes, but they're ridiculously expensive here in Finland and arrive like half a year later than anywhere else. Neither of those are anything more than temporary hindrances that can be overcome with patience however, and a few months back I would likely have bought the boxes.

But alas, with the recent announcement from MAFIAA that there'll be even more unskippable FBI-warnings on DVD - and BluRay - releases and that those will be placed after you press Play -- ie. you cannot just go to toilet during them like you can during the previews -- I finally decided to not buy BluRays or DVDs anymore. There's over 1000 movies/boxes in this household, all completely legitimate, yet MAFIAA still insists on punishing me for paying for the movies?

Ergo, I pirate the shows and movies now. A Spotify-like service for TV-shows would look quite attractive to me, but I'm not aware of one at the moment that'd service Finland. Besides, it'd probably end up being just as shoddy as the few movie-streaming services I've tried, with missing subtitles, extremely poor quality, clients that push ads on your browser even when you're not watching anything..

Basically, I pirate because I am being treated like a pirate whether or not I actually do it, and because no one seems interested in providing me with a worthy online-service to use.

Reply Score: 11

RE[2]: I can't get HBO
by BeamishBoy on Tue 22nd May 2012 00:54 UTC in reply to "RE: I can't get HBO"
BeamishBoy Member since:
2010-10-27

So why not wait until they sell the box?


Because it's more convenient to simply download each episode as it comes out than it is to wait for six to twelve months to buy a box set.

Is it your citizen's right to freeload the content that others pay a subscription fee for?


Of course not.

The main point here is that the current model by which TV series are supplied to consumers is broken. I, for instance, will not pay between £20 and £60 a month for a subscription to Sky simply for the privilege of watching the one or two shows they have that interest me. That would be a stupid waste of my time and money.

I would, however, gladly pay £2 to £5 to watch each episode of Game of Thrones online legally. I don't even require that I be able to download it; all I ask is that I can watch it whenever I want, whether that be the same time as it's broadcast on HBO in the US or perhaps up to a week after the initial broadcast.

The moment that HBO makes that deal available, I'll stop getting torrents for their shows.

Reply Score: 2

Comment by MOS6510
by MOS6510 on Mon 21st May 2012 04:51 UTC
MOS6510
Member since:
2011-05-12

Just received a message on my phone, episode 8 has been downloaded!

Reply Score: 2

Reason for UK
by steogede2 on Mon 21st May 2012 04:57 UTC
steogede2
Member since:
2007-08-17

In the UK, there are two dominant subscription broadcast TV providers; Sky (BSkyB) a satellite provider and Virgin Media a cable provider. Sky licences much of their content to Virgin Media, however they do not licence Sky Atlantic - the channel they broadcast all their HBO content on.

Many people cannot get Sky TV because they cannot install a satellite dish on their property for various reason (e.g. planning permission, landlord approval, shared ownership (flats etc.)). Likewise many people (IMHO) choose to boycott News International/BSkyB/Rupert Murdoch.

This leaves many people unable/unwilling to receive HBO broadcasts. Game of Thrones is probably the most popular HBO show. Hence, it ends up being the most downloaded.

BTW, I suspect that many people who use BitTorrent to "pirate" already subscribe to a subscription TV service - probably more, as a percentage, than the general population.

Edited 2012-05-21 05:00 UTC

Reply Score: 3

Because I'm living in Europe
by reez on Mon 21st May 2012 05:12 UTC
reez
Member since:
2006-06-28

Could I even get it here?

Edited 2012-05-21 05:12 UTC

Reply Score: 3

Crisortunity
by kwan_e on Mon 21st May 2012 05:17 UTC
kwan_e
Member since:
2007-02-18

Let's hope HBO sees this is a sales opportunity rather than something to kill off...

Reply Score: 5

In Oz...
by brissietex on Mon 21st May 2012 05:21 UTC
brissietex
Member since:
2006-03-09

you'd have to subscribe to Foxtel which will set you back at least 51 AUD/month if you get the absolute bare essentials to watch something like Game of Thrones on Showtime. Add all those installation fees plus a minimum 12 month contract. Check out foxtel.com.au to see how complicated their pricing structure is unless you package and that will set you back 92 AUD/month (+10 for HD). Bloody monopoly it is too.

Also, it usually takes several months for the DVD/Blu-ray editions to get here if at all. Purchasing overseas is the way to go.

Little wonder BT-ing here in Australia is the way to watch tele.

Reply Score: 1

RE: In Oz...
by blacknought on Wed 23rd May 2012 10:50 UTC in reply to "In Oz..."
blacknought Member since:
2012-05-15

... or you could pay 28.99 on iTunes for a season pass and download the episodes the day after they are aired on Foxtel.

Reply Score: 1

Comment by marcp
by marcp on Mon 21st May 2012 06:20 UTC
marcp
Member since:
2007-11-23

"Who's pirating Game of Thrones, and why?"

Definitely not me. I'm generally bored with the mass-media content from the start. Never liked that kind of stuff. Everyone - pick your own poison!

Reply Score: 2

RE: Comment by marcp
by Morgan on Mon 21st May 2012 06:45 UTC in reply to "Comment by marcp"
Morgan Member since:
2005-06-29

I got the first season DVD box set of Game of Thrones from my fiancée for my birthday yesterday. I am interested in the show since I've read the first two books, and I did download the first episode last year just to see if I would like it. I must say that it's a fairly good interpretation of the book so far.

In general though, I try not to download anything that isn't free-to-air, which is why I didn't just download the entire series. I know that's not a perfect moral excuse, but I see no difference in downloading what someone else has pulled from their DVR, and recording it live myself. In fact, I'd say the only difference is my own laziness. I do have my home-built DVR set up to record OTA shows I watch, but as a backup I have Sickbeard/Sabnzbd set up for the whole seasons too.

I do understand your viewpoint though. With all the better shows getting the axe in the first season lately, and redneck "reality" garbage getting multiple seasons and spinoffs, what's the point in getting invested in a show these days? Why not just download it when it's convenient for you, rather than scheduling your life for the TV?

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: Comment by marcp
by galvanash on Mon 21st May 2012 08:13 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by marcp"
galvanash Member since:
2006-01-25

I know that's not a perfect moral excuse, but I see no difference in downloading what someone else has pulled from their DVR, and recording it live myself.


Yeah... most people don't. But the MAFIAA will try and extort you anyway if they can - they have no concept of morality.

But yeah, I get where you are coming from. I actually have a subscription to HBO (and have had it for at least 15 years) - the only time I download Game of Thrones is when my DVR screws up or they air an episode early on HBO GO - which ironically I can't get because my fiber provider isn't on Time Warners list of blessed cable operators.

Even if I could get HBO GO I would probably still download the episodes - I don't want to watch it on my computer - I want to use my Apple TV...

If these idiots would just realize there are a lot of people like me... I don't want free stuff, I just want it without all the bullshit hassle in a format I can do what I like with. It is FAR easier to just download a torrent...

Reply Score: 4

RE: Comment by marcp
by kwan_e on Mon 21st May 2012 07:21 UTC in reply to "Comment by marcp"
kwan_e Member since:
2007-02-18

"Who's pirating Game of Thrones, and why?"

Definitely not me. I'm generally bored with the mass-media content from the start. Never liked that kind of stuff.


Game of Thrones is very popular and very well adapted and produced, but I wouldn't call it "mass media" content. "Mass media" isn't known for having scenes of people kicking other people's heads off after unsuccessfully hacking away at the neck with a sword in broad daylight...

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: Comment by marcp
by marcp on Mon 21st May 2012 08:50 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by marcp"
marcp Member since:
2007-11-23

"Mass media" isn't known for having scenes of people kicking other people's heads off after unsuccessfully hacking away at the neck with a sword in broad daylight...


That is exactly what the mass-media is today ...

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Comment by marcp
by kwan_e on Mon 21st May 2012 09:38 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by marcp"
kwan_e Member since:
2007-02-18

""Mass media" isn't known for having scenes of people kicking other people's heads off after unsuccessfully hacking away at the neck with a sword in broad daylight...


That is exactly what the mass-media is today ...
"

Of course, that's why they cancelled shows like American Idol after Simon Cowell kicked the head off a contestant...

Mass media indeed.

Reply Score: 3

RE[4]: Comment by marcp
by Thom_Holwerda on Mon 21st May 2012 09:42 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Comment by marcp"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

"[q]"Mass media" isn't known for having scenes of people kicking other people's heads off after unsuccessfully hacking away at the neck with a sword in broad daylight...


That is exactly what the mass-media is today ...
"

Of course, that's why they cancelled shows like American Idol after Simon Cowell kicked the head off a contestant...

Mass media indeed. [/q]

I'd watch that.

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: Comment by marcp
by MOS6510 on Mon 21st May 2012 10:48 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Comment by marcp"
MOS6510 Member since:
2011-05-12

It doesn't happen often Thom, but we can agree on this.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Comment by marcp
by No it isnt on Mon 21st May 2012 07:34 UTC in reply to "Comment by marcp"
No it isnt Member since:
2005-11-14

I was like that at first, thinking the show wasn't for me: it was much too obviously made for younger nerds, with titillating softcore in a fantasy setting vaguely based on European history. Then I saw a few episodes and was hooked. Then I got tired of it and stopped watching.

I still like that dwarf, though.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Comment by marcp
by l3v1 on Mon 21st May 2012 08:09 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by marcp"
l3v1 Member since:
2005-07-06

Then I saw a few episodes and was hooked


Well, for most people it's quite hard not to, since the story has all elements of a good old south american soap opera. The tv show has less, and mostly tries to concentrate on parts with some action, but still has enough of it.

Reply Score: 2

because
by Brunis on Mon 21st May 2012 07:36 UTC
Brunis
Member since:
2005-11-01

Because i don't want to be a slave to my tv, when i hear about a show being great.. i don't want to wait 6-12 months for a channel to get it here! And i certainly don't want to wait a whole week in between episodes! Thom says tv can't get much better, i say it it sucks total ass and can get alot better. And i can't wait for Apple to revolutionize it. Only the TV shows i want and when i want it, for a much lower price. I'll get the cheap Android knockoff ofcourse. ;)

Reply Score: 6

RE: because
by marcp on Mon 21st May 2012 08:55 UTC in reply to "because"
marcp Member since:
2007-11-23

Years ago people used to have their own taste, interrests and different personalities. Nowadays it's all about "the popular" stuff. If it's popular it must be good. Maybe I'm just old, but I don't find myself in it. Got my own, unpopular interrests.
Now, don't get me wrong. I am not trying to be elitist or anything. I'm just pointing out something that - IMO - has to be pointed out. People have lost their critical sense and rationality so they grab everything that you throw at them.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: because
by kwan_e on Mon 21st May 2012 09:29 UTC in reply to "RE: because"
kwan_e Member since:
2007-02-18

Years ago people used to have their own taste, interrests and different personalities. Nowadays it's all about "the popular" stuff. If it's popular it must be good. Maybe I'm just old,


Probably, because to me, it seems back in the "old" days, it was just as much about "the popular" stuff as it is today. I find it very hard to buy the nostalgia of you old folks that things were better in the old days.

No they weren't. You just got older and you've seen history repeat itself, but instead of seeing it that way, you invent an imaginary past where everyone was indie. No, they weren't.

Got my own, unpopular interrests. Now, don't get me wrong. I am not trying to be elitist or anything. I'm just pointing out something that - IMO - has to be pointed out. People have lost their critical sense and rationality so they grab everything that you throw at them.


Except fantasy has never been "popular". It's always been in a separate section of bookstores away from the popular books. LOTR made high fantasy acceptable in recent times, but it's a fad. Hard core fantasy geeks who have their own unpopular interests read/watch more than Game of Thrones, but they also watch Game of Thrones.

Reply Score: 7

RE[3]: because
by helf on Mon 21st May 2012 14:13 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: because"
helf Member since:
2005-07-06

Thank you. People waxing nostalgic drive me nuts.

Go pick up "The way we never were". Its not perfect but it does a good job of destroying nostalgia.

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: because
by Laurence on Mon 21st May 2012 12:15 UTC in reply to "RE: because"
Laurence Member since:
2007-03-26

Years ago people used to have their own taste, interrests and different personalities. Nowadays it's all about "the popular" stuff. If it's popular it must be good. Maybe I'm just old, but I don't find myself in it. Got my own, unpopular interrests.
Now, don't get me wrong. I am not trying to be elitist or anything. I'm just pointing out something that - IMO - has to be pointed out. People have lost their critical sense and rationality so they grab everything that you throw at them.

That's weird, because in the old days there were fewer channels, no satellite, cable nor internet stations. There were also fewer genres of music as newer playing techniques and music technology hadn't been invented and there were also greater limits on all media content as boundaries hadn't been pushed as much.

Don't get me wrong, I love some classic media (TV, movies, music), and getting older myself, I'm growing to loath some modern adaptations (particularly in music). But this whole perception that people were more individual at a time when choice was limited and starting your own indie station was very expensive is just bonkers.

These days any spotty teenager can produce music on his laptop, publish his own blog and even record his own TV show or movie on budget consumer hardware. These days there's more possibilities then you could ever imagine even as recently as 30 years ago. These days you have internet-based TV networks their air everything from RPG soap operas through to whole shows dedicated to board games (eg Wil Wheaton's, 'Table Top').

If you can imagine it, then there's likely an internet community. And if there isn't, then it's easy to start one.

So if you can't find content that matches your individuality, then I suggest it's because you're not looking hard enough.

Reply Score: 4

Comment by tuma324
by tuma324 on Mon 21st May 2012 09:40 UTC
tuma324
Member since:
2010-04-09

Because I can.

Reply Score: 6

The convenience of piracy
by kokara4a on Mon 21st May 2012 10:05 UTC
kokara4a
Member since:
2005-09-16

It was mentioned already in this thread but I think it deserves a discussion of its own - piracy is just so much more convenient than legal content:
* No DRM
* Comes in a variety of widely supported formats
* No unskippable bullshit
* Very fast downloads; well, not always, but if it's a popular torrent I can hit 5-6MB/s (B is for bytes, not bits)! No single server has ever provided me with downloads so fast. And I never stream - only download. So slow downloads are a show stopper for me.
* I need only use my browser to find it - so I can do it on any platform (I'm looking at you, iTunes!)

If I am to pay for content it has to have all the features listed above before I even consider it for purchase. To me a download amounts to piracy only if it's available for purchase while passing the checklist above. And since this is not the case for majority I am, therefore, not a pirate - I'm "stealing" a product which is not available for purchase.

Reply Score: 7

RE: The convenience of piracy
by Erunno on Mon 21st May 2012 10:41 UTC in reply to "The convenience of piracy"
Erunno Member since:
2007-06-22

I have the habit to download most of the stuff I bought for the reasons you outlined. It's far more convenient to keep everything on a streaming file server than on physical media. Call me lazy but right now I don't even have to get up and search for the disks, put them into the player and bring them back after usage should I suddenly feel the urge to watch (or listen to) something. My almost complete media library is always just a few clicks away. I also don't have to keep the disks around in the living space but can keep them safely stashed away in the basement.

The other way around: I've bought a *lot* of stuff after watching the downloaded version first simply to express my support for certain formats in the only language corporations understand: money. I'm sure I wouldn't have bought half the stuff I own if I didn't have a chance to, er, sample it beforehand because the prices are usually high enough to prevent impulse purchases.

Reply Score: 4

Convenience
by getaceres on Mon 21st May 2012 12:29 UTC
getaceres
Member since:
2005-07-06

Because I can see it whenever I want, wherever I want and in every device that I can. It's the same with every other series. I don't watch TV anymore, I don't want to organize my social life based on when they want to air something. I watch shows in my free time when I'm at home and in the moment that I feel it.

Reply Score: 2

Comment by sagum
by sagum on Mon 21st May 2012 13:41 UTC
sagum
Member since:
2006-01-23

Am I the only one that thought this was a game? Never heard of a TV show with this name. Then again, I don't really watch much TV apart from TBT and Top Gear, so I'm not really sure why I'm even paying for a tv license.

Reply Score: 1

Me too
by ashes_786 on Mon 21st May 2012 15:42 UTC
ashes_786
Member since:
2011-10-22

I have to admit I pirated the first season and decided to read the book before watching the series. After reading the book I was impressed by the story and immediately ordered the second book but I was disappointed with the TV series, it feels childish and dumbed down with just enough titties in it to keep the average guy interested. I may just struggle through the 7 remaining episodes to see if it improves but I have to say the books are awesome.

Reply Score: 1

In Brazil
by franksands on Mon 21st May 2012 20:27 UTC
franksands
Member since:
2009-08-18

Fisrt and foremost, I have to thank HBO for launching the series here in the day as in the US, that's really amazing. Unfortunately, you'd have to pay at least R$150(74 USD) to subscribe to a cable tv to watch HBO. Sorry but that's to expensive for me.
And honestly, I didn't find season 2 that much exciting, so I just stopped watching.

Reply Score: 1

Comment by tidux
by tidux on Tue 22nd May 2012 00:40 UTC
tidux
Member since:
2011-08-13

HBO Go doesn't work on Haiku, so if I want to rewatch an episode later I either reboot into Linux every time or pirate once.

Reply Score: 1

in New Zealand
by Lion on Tue 22nd May 2012 10:33 UTC
Lion
Member since:
2007-03-22

I want to watch it in a timely fashion so I can talk about it with friends overseas, and at a time of my choosing.
There is no legal way to do that here.

I subscribe to an online video service for the anime I watch so I feel I am being honest when I say that if an option with sensible pricing, decent quality, and timely episode releases were to be available, I WOULD take advantage of it.
But Hulu etc is blocked, and even taking advantage of services that unblock it I still can't give them my money because they block overseas creditcards. I have tried.

Reply Score: 3