Cable dramas lead the charge in this year’s list of most-pirated television shows, according to a report published by TorrentFreak.com.
In the case of HBO’s Game of Thrones – which has been notoriously difficult to download or view legally unless you’re a subscriber of the pay channel – the number of estimated viewers is nearly equal to the number of legal television viewers.
The top 10 most-pirated shows of 2013 are:
1) Game of Thrones (5.9 million downloads, 5.5 million TV viewers)
2) Breaking Bad (4.2m downloads, 10.28m TV viewers)
3) The Walking Dead (3.6m downloads, 16.1m TV viewers)
4) The Big Bang Theory (3.4m downloads, 20.44m TV viewers)
5) Dexter (3.1m downloads, 2.8m TV viewers)
6) How I Met Your Mother (3m downloads, 9.4m TV viewers)
7) Suits (2.6m downloads, 3.52m TV viewers)
8) Homeland (2.4m downloads, 2.38m TV viewers)
9) Vikings (2.3m downloads, 6m TV viewers)
10) Arrow (2.2m downloads, 3.24m TV viewers)
These numbers are based on BitTorrent downloads per episode. Most of them are cable dramas because less people have those channels at home.
Torrent Freak conducted the same poll in the middle of this year and found Game of Thrones in the same spot, though the number of downloads per episode has risen over the past few months.
Torrents of television shows have become increasingly easier to obtain over the years as demand amongst internet-savvy viewers grows greater. Not to mention the fact that it’s a great way to save money and watch the shows on your own time.