Newly collated figures show that Game of Thrones is the most illegally downloaded show of 2012 so far.
The swords-and-sorcery epic, based on the novels of George R.R. Martin has been already been downloaded over 25 million times, despite the series being far from over. That’s the equivalent of of 2.5 million downloads per day.
Broadcast and made by HBO in the US, and screened in the UK on the Sky Atlantic channel, analysts believe the reason the show is being downloaded by so many is that it is unavailable through HBO’s TV catch up services for free.
“The fact that it’s consistently at the top of the Pirate Bay’s top one hundred TV show chart seems like an in-your-face leading indicator of the huge volume at which this is being shared,” said Big Champagne analyst John Robinson.
“This is absolutely a reaction to the show’s not being available elsewhere online It’s a very tricky game trying to create this kind of scarcity.”
However, with a budget that rivals a large scale movie production, it’s unlikely that HBO will change their attitude to Game of Thrones video on demand availability any time soon, lest they struggle to recoup the show’s giant costs.