There are many ways to gauge a TV show’s popularity, though one of the most reliable is also the one the networks most despise. I’m talking, of course, about how many people are pirating the series through torrents. And now, with 2018 fast approaching, prominent Torrent site Torrent Freak has totted up the numbers and worked out a top ten of thievery.
Somewhat predictably, Game of Thrones is number one on the list of most pirated TV series. The show is wildly popular, with HBO’s fantasy epic reserved to premium subscription services, thus creating a motive for cash-strapped or tight-fisted pirates to avoid paying for it. Plus, there were the widely publicized leaks from the show, further driving up pirate traffic.
Number two is The Walking Dead and three is The Flash, followed by The Big Bang Theory (Really, pirates? Really?). Three newcomers to the list, meanwhile, fill out spots five to seven – Rick and Morty, Prison Break and the BBC’s Sherlock – while Vikings comes in at eighth, Suits at ninth and Arrow tenth.
While no production company would trumpet getting on the list as a success, it at least proves that viewers are so hungry to watch these shows that they’ll go to illicit ends to get their hands on them. Still, a series descending the list should worry a little that their popularity is diminishing: you’d imagine that the news that Arrow has dropped five places from 5th in 2016 to 10th in 2017 indicates that audiences are losing interest just a bit, right?
All this said, each year the rates of torrenting decreases. Far more prevalent now is piracy via streaming, with a plethora of spyware and crypto-miner laden video sites popping up in the seedier corners of the web enticing viewers with the promise of the latest shows in HD quality. I’m sure there are aren’t many pirates among the esteemed and noble readers of We Got This Covered, but on the off-chance there are, let us know what you think of all this in the comments section down below.