A billion times. That’s how massive the flood of pirated Game of Thrones video was for the show’s most recent season. The recently released data presents some interesting insights, too — namely that torrents aren’t nearly as popular as illegitimate streaming sites.
Torrentfreak makes the note that the data is extrapolated by MUSO and SimilarWeb from a representative sample of 200 million devices, and also doesn’t cover the Chinese market — so it’s not comprehensive. But it’s still telling, particularly of the fact that streaming is a hell of a lot more popular than torrenting.
There are some pretty straightforward reasons for this, of course: streaming doesn’t need anything other than a half-decent laptop, phone or tablet, a half-decent internet connection, and a Web browser. Torrenting requires a tiny bit more technical expertise, and sometimes involves mucking around with your router to open ports or ISP-level throttling or filtering. But streaming is more popular by a 10:1 ratio versus torrenting, and that’s a lot.
Each episode was pirated around 150 million times, according to MUSO’s estimates, apart from the leaked sixth episode which nearly hit 200 million episodes — unsurprising, since its early availability was big news when it happened.