Game Of Thrones On Track To Be Most Pirated Show Of 2012; Pirates Still Asking HBO For Legitimate Options

from the blame-matthew-inman? dept

Much like the North, Game of Thrones cannot be held—it's too big and too wild. Matthew Inman warned HBO that they should make their content more accessible or risk driving people to piracy, but that isn't really HBO's style. Now jilocasin points us to the news that Game of Thrones is well on track to be the most torrented show of 2012, and nobody can deny that HBO's foolish subscriber-only distribution is a primary reason for that. Approximately 25-million times have people decided to pay the iron price for the show, and as the comments on Reddit attest, it's often because the gold price wasn't even an option. Others pay for the show but still pirate for the sake of occasional convenience:

Sometimes I just want to fire up an episode and watch it on my laptop immediately and with mobility as I'm wandering around the house, and not worry about streaming/quality issues or finding a disk, setting up the DVD player etc. I am truly lazy.

Meanwhile, Game of Thrones continues to have great ratings. And the torrent piracy count doesn't include streams, which are also hugely popular, so it only represents a fraction of the pirate world. Why not create new ways to legitimize some of those viewers, especially considering so many of them have said they want to be legitimized? I still contend that HBO-style shows owe a lot to piracy for their cultural dominance, because, if they were actually as exclusive as HBO wants to pretend they are, they would have had a much harder time gathering fans. But HBO co-president Eric Kessler thinks cord-cutting is a fad, so like most characters in the show, he's fighting silly battles while ignoring what's really going on.



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  1.  
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    Rikuo (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 5:02am

    Only TV network executives can have customers saying precisely what they want, and then turn around and say "No, we're not going to fulfill customer demand!"

     

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    Donnicton, May 11th, 2012 @ 5:09am

    GOODEVENING HBO
    FROM CAPTAIN MIDNIGHT
    $12.95/MONTH ?
    NO WAY !
    [SHOWTIME/MOVIE CHANNEL BEWARE!]

     

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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 5:12am

    Brace yourselves. The trolls are coming.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 5:15am

    Of course cord cutting is a fad! HBO's viewers are just spoiled kids who don't like the 'adults' like HBO tripling their prices over the last 11 years! HBO's viewers just have to learn that jacking up your prices for entertainment much faster then the rate of inflation is just life!

    In 10 years or so HBO's viewers will all be grown up, and will start paying triple what HBO is charging today just to watch their favorite shows like Game of Thrones!

     

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  5.  
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    Alana (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 5:23am

    Psh, you act like they listen.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 5:27am

    'none so blind as those that will not see'

    how many companies/industries suffer from this syndrome today?

     

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    Rob, May 11th, 2012 @ 5:29am

    Overpriced HBO

    If I could get HBO for $8 a month on all my computers, consoles and portable devices I would gladly pay. $15.99 I would have to pay Directv is too much especially when I only watch 3 shows on HBO. The executives who run HBO are clueless. I bet if the made the shows available via iTunes or pay per view at a resonable price many people would gladly pay.

     

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    Nellius (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 5:30am

    Ironically, Game of Thrones is one of the few US TV shows I don't pirate.
    I'm British, and most american shows, if they come to British TV at all, come weeks or months behind the USA. Some of the most popular ones air a few days to a week later. Game of Thrones airs on the Monday evening, about 18 hours after the US release, meaning that when I get home from work on Monday, and am ready to watch the show - it's on TV! Now, I'm a "cable cutter" - I don't own a TV, and do all my viewing through the internet. But Game of Thrones is on the Sky Atlantic channel. Sky offer a great online service - SkyGo, which I am happily subscribed to without having a TV in the house. Perhaps if more TV networks/providers had a similar outlook, and made it easier to pay them money to watch their shows, many more would!

     

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    SabreCat, May 11th, 2012 @ 5:34am

    "Approximately 25-million times have people decided to pay the iron price for the show"

    Pirates are murdering people to get access to HBO shows? o.O

     

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    Sion, May 11th, 2012 @ 5:38am

    Re:

    Sssshhh.... Eric Kessler might hear you.

     

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    surfer (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 5:38am

    ironic

    what I find truly ironic is that every TV show and movie that is out there still has the beginning credits and ending credits. If the file sharing world was so hell bent on 'free', why would every single one of them go to such lengths to ensure the creators got credit for the content. And everyone IN the content during the credits is there as well, and not just the actors. It's plainly obvious the file sharers are doing this on purpose, because there are no commercials, they cut them all out, or the anti-piracy intros, but leave everything else. (except with Game of Throse, no commercials, yet the beginning is the pssssssssswhooooommmmmm of HBO)

    Why is that?

     

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    surfer (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 5:42am

    DVD Copy

    and if the MAFIAA is telling the educational system that the only way to make a legitimate copy of a DVD is play it on a screen and videotape it with another device while playing the DVD.

    Doesn't that make Cam Cording in a movie theatre legal? And if you own the copyrights to video you take yourself, doesn't that automatically give you copyright on the video of the DVD, and/or the CAM from the movie theatre?.

    I'm confused..

     

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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 5:42am

    Re: Overpriced HBO

    Being from the UK, if I could get HBO at all I would be happy.

     

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    surfer (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 5:47am

    Audio Format

    I'm on a roll this morning.. if the RIAA Studios can get a new copyright on 'digitally remastered' music, then why don't file sharers get their own copyright when then convert FLAC to mp3? This is absolutely defined as 'digitally remastered', so it's not like a mash-up, mix-up, tribute, sync, cover, or any other stupidity. It's digitally remastered, complete new format, sound quality, file size, codec and hash tag.

    Now I'm really confused...

     

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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 5:51am

    I am trying to get my household to get rid of tv and go full on internet. But some minds are hard to change. I download GOT every sunday night after Mad Men! HBO and the like need to allow multiple ways to get their service. Get with your cable or get a subscription online. That would be too easy and too profitable though.

     

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    Ninja (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 5:53am

    Ffs, just give me a place where I can download the damn thing 1080p with no DRM and I will give you my money. Fair deal?

    HBO doesn't think so.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 5:55am

    People support what they love and what these corporations fail to realize is even if people stream/download pirated copies they will end up buying it.

     

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    surfer (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 5:56am

    Re:

    possibly in 5 years.., maybe..

    how long did it take the series'Lost' to make it to DVD?

     

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    E. Zachary Knight (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 5:57am

    Re: Overpriced HBO

    That's $16 after the typical package from Direct TV. so probably closer to $75. I wouldn't know as I don't pay for tv.

     

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    surfer (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 5:59am

    VAT

    how does that VAT per TV work in the UK now, especially if you use the internet for all your viewing? is there an internet VAT now?

    /just honestly asking.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 6:01am

    price i would pay

    i am currently downloading GoT. Which is a bit boring to do. I think each episode costs about 10m.
    If i hired the box set for a week it would cost 3. But watching it as a DVD in a week doesn't suit either.
    There are 10 episodes in a season - so renting an episode costs 30p.
    My BBC licence is 160 per year, i once worked out that for prime TV i pay about 10p per hour.
    i reckon i would pay 20p per episode if i could watch GoT when i wanted, ie now, on anything, anywhere.
    If they could get 60million viewers worldwide to pay that per episode they would make a good profit on each one.
    I think that is probably doable.
    What do you think?
    Apologies for shoddy maths and invented figures.

     

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    Maria Joo Nogueira, May 11th, 2012 @ 6:03am

    The same issue, in draw

     

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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 6:05am

    Re:

    I would stab you, to watch Doctor Who.

     

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    m3h3r3, May 11th, 2012 @ 6:12am

    Re: VAT

    TV licence for live broadcast/stream because it's classed as a 'service'. VAT only for pre-recorded like DVD or CD as it's classed as a 'product'.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 6:12am

    Re: The same issue, in draw

     

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    Palmyra (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 6:18am

    Re: $12.95/MONTH ?

    More than that because one has to have a upgraded package to get HBO.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 6:20am

    Re: ironic

    Hmm, now that you mention it, the credits are always cut on every show and movie our commercial television channels air, just so they can cut directly to loud commercials (and save time to show more of them).

     

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    Rich "Forge" Mingin (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 6:22am

    Re:

    Here in the Iron Islands, we pay the Iron Price for everything. Just this morning I paid the Iron Price for breakfast, then paid for cigarettes, then I paid a toll on the turnpike! YARRR!!

     

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  29.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 6:26am

    Re:

    No, they won't always end up buying it. There are various reasons for that. But that's why it's even more important to offer a convenient way of buying the product when it counts and not a year later when nobody cares anymore.

     

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  30.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 6:27am

    Count me as one of the "pirates" who'd pay for the show if they'd just get out of their own way and let me. Hell, I couldn't even buy the first season on DVD until March.

     

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    PaulT (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 6:33am

    Re: Re:

    I'm not sure how long it would have been after transmission, but I remember buying the US DVD box set of Lost after watching the pilot on its first UK broadcast. But then, that wasn't an HBO show...

     

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    Rich Kulawiec, May 11th, 2012 @ 6:42am

    If HBO put it up for 99 cents an episode

    With no DRM, no nonsense warnings, none of that -- they'd make a fortune.

     

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  33.  
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    Angel (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 6:49am

    I would gladly pay HBO for Game of thrones as well as true blood, but they apparently don't want my money :(

     

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    Josef Anvil (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 6:56am

    FU HBO

    I really don't care what HBO's business model is, but I'll give them some FREE advice. Stream the damn show from hbo.com for free. If 25 million eyes pirated it, then you should be able to capture at least 12.5 million of those eyes and THAT should be worth something to advertisers.

    "but..but... that would cannibalize our revenue stream."

    Well you say that cord cutters are some mythical species, so streaming it from your site shouldn't affect your core audience at all. To be fair, I seriously doubt the bulk of your current subscribers would cut the cord anyway. That's a generational trend that you will have to deal with in the next 10 years or so.

    In the meantime, you can either a) complain about lost revenue that never existed, or b) make a new revenue stream and enjoy the profit.

    We will understand if you choose to whine about loss while we enjoy the programming. Good luck.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 6:57am

    Re: If HBO put it up for 99 cents an episode

    If they canny see that they need to sack their business advisers.

     

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    Martin, May 11th, 2012 @ 6:59am

    You have to give some credit to HBO. At least in Latin America, the second season episodes are premiered on the same day and time as in the U.S., so if you are subscribed to HBO, the "waiting for months" argument for downloading new episodes is very weak.

     

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    bob, May 11th, 2012 @ 7:05am

    Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    Hey, if you want to see the show, buy cable. It's available almost everywhere. And I wouldn't be surprised if a large fraction of the people who are stomping their feet and asking for a so-called "legitimate" version of the show are downloading their torrent files over Comcast. Yet they're too cheap to pay for HBO.

    I don't buy HBO. I don't think it's worth it. But if there's a show I want to see, I wait until it's out on DVD. That's their business model and they're entitled to it.

    How would Mike feel if we broke into the Techdirt CMS and took stories that weren't available to the public yet? He would be screaming about how this was violating his privacy etc etc. Yet here he his championing people who break into HBO's admittedly big CMS with an admittedly huge set of authorized members.

    Face it. You can either either be champion of privacy or a champion of piracy but you can't be both because, at its core, piracy is just violating the private files of the content creators.

     

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    bordy (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 7:07am

    Re: ironic

    I'd hazard to guess that TV release groups ("thieving pirates" to some of you) don't cut beginning credits because it's just a little more of a pain in the ass to edit these out, especially considering they're often run directly over a show's beginning scenes. As for ending credits, I often find these partially if not wholly cut from the types of files about which you write.

    It's not that I don't want to believe you're right (though to be clear, redacting credits from pirated TV releases does not offend me in the slightest), but my gut just tells me those credits that you see are there for WAY less altruistic reasons than you seem to believe.

     

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    bob, May 11th, 2012 @ 7:13am

    Scientific Proof of the success of paywalls!

    Let me include my obligatory praise of paywall systems. After Mike calls the HBO paywall "foolish", he goes on to celebrate the cultural significance of the shows. I like how he pretends that this is because of torrent streams.

    But we've done this experiment, science fans. There are dozens of torrent-only shows. All of the koolaid drinkers around here are making them and posting them. How many of them have 1/1000th of the "cultural significance" of HBO shows?

    So if you're a scientist, not a Paywall-denier on loan from the Global Warming denying website, you've got to believe that the paywall is a big part of HBO's success.

    Why? It gives them the money to pay professionals and nurture their talent. It collects the money directly instead of forcing the audience to support the show by purchasing a t-shirt they don't want to wear. This is why Mike is celebrating KickStarter, a site I call Paywall++. It cuts out the t-shirt-making middleman.

    So if we're going to grant HBO a modicum of "cultural significance" we've got to admit that the scientific method says that there's strong evidence that this is because of the paywall, not the torrent-based piracy.

     

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    ltlw0lf (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 7:15am

    Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    How would Mike feel if we broke into the Techdirt CMS and took stories that weren't available to the public yet? He would be screaming about how this was violating his privacy etc etc. Yet here he his championing people who break into HBO's admittedly big CMS with an admittedly huge set of authorized members.

    He gives it to you if you pay him $15. He doesn't make you pay Google $100 to get it for $15 from him, and he doesn't wait until next year to put it out on DVD form that you can buy.

     

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    ltlw0lf (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 7:19am

    Re: Scientific Proof of the success of paywalls!

    Scientific Proof of the success of paywalls!

    If that is scientific proof, I've got this scientifically proven method for cold fusion that would make you millions; I am only asking for a million for it.

     

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    The eejit (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 7:19am

    Re: VAT

    About 14/mo. due to the TV Licence that pays for the BBC. It's basically a TV tax.

     

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    PaulT (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 7:23am

    Re: Scientific Proof of the success of paywalls!

    Did a paywall touch you as a child or something? I can't fathom your ridiculous obsession with them.

     

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    PaulT (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 7:24am

    Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    "Hey, if you want to see the show, buy cable. It's available almost everywhere. "

    But not everywhere, by your own admission.

    On top of that, people aren't saying they won't get cable. They're saying they won't get the cable packages required to even have HBO as an option plus the extra expense of HBO itself just to watch one or two shows. There's a huge difference. people want to pay, they just don't want to pay for $100 of unnecessary crap every month just to watch a TV show.

    "But if there's a show I want to see, I wait until it's out on DVD."

    ...and if it's never released on DVD? Or the DVD is restricted or blocked from you in some way?

    "That's their business model and they're entitled to it. "

    ...and others are entitled to voice their opinion about it if they think it's flawed or doomed to failure, especially if it clearly incentivises piracy.

    "He would be screaming about how this was violating his privacy etc etc."

    Citation needed.

    "Yet here he his championing people who break into HBO's admittedly big CMS with an admittedly huge set of authorized members."

    Except that's absolutely nothing like the post you're responding to. Read the actual words, not the fantasy you make up in your head.

    "Face it. You can either either be champion of privacy or a champion of piracy but you can't be both because, at its core, piracy is just violating the private files of the content creators."

    Yes, you're one of the paranoid lunatics who troll this site by launching unfounded accusations against others and never deem it necessary to back up your claims or admit you're wrong when faced with clear evidence of that. You may be one of the more polite and less single minded trolls here, but that label still fits.

     

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    Zakida Paul (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 7:25am

    Re: Scientific Proof of the success of paywalls!

    Question - Would Game Of Thrones be such a cultural phenomenon and talked about so extensively if it were not for people 'pirating' it?

     

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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 7:30am

    Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    Really? So your response to "hey, we want to pay for your show but we don't want to pay for cable" is "get cable you cheap pirates"? Wow. Just when I thought you couldn't possibly say anything stupider... and for you that's almost impossible for me to say.

    The people asking for a legitimate version of the show are asking for it to be available either on iTunes or through Netflix or through HBO itself. They want to pay to watch the show. They just don't want to have to subscribe to cable/satellite and then subscribe to HBO just for one tv show which airs only one time per week (insofar as one new episode per week, not necessarily just one time per week).

    "How would Mike feel if we broke into the Techdirt CMS and took stories that weren't available to the public yet? He would be screaming about how this was violating his privacy etc etc. Yet here he his championing people who break into HBO's admittedly big CMS with an admittedly huge set of authorized members. "

    I can't with certainty say how Mike would feel, but I'm sure his first concern would be security related. How did they break in? What exactly did they take? And so on and so forth. But I don't see how he's championing for people to break into HBO's CMS. He's stating facts. People are pirating the show. People want to pay for the show. They have no legitimate means to do so, beyond "buy cable" as you not so eloquently put it.

    "Face it. You can either either be champion of privacy or a champion of piracy but you can't be both because, at its core, piracy is just violating the private files of the content creators."

    bob only in you're deluded world is Mike a champion for piracy. By saying "piracy happens, you can't kill it completely but you can focus on the people who want to pay etc etc etc", Mike is stating things as they are, he's being a realist. He is NOT however being a "champion of piracy". And sorry, but "piracy is just violating the private files of the content creators" is a CROCK OF SH*T. If those files were private they WOULD NOT be able to be pirated. Once something is released to the world in any form it is no longer private. A tv show, aired on television is MOST DEFINITELY NOT the "private files of the content creators".

    And the fact that you can't distinguish the difference between Mike's stories on a server which haven't been released to the public yet and a tv episode that has already been broadcasted multiple times to the public says just how out of touch with reality/proper analogies you are.

    "Your music's bad and you should feel bad!" - Dr. Zoidberg

    That quote came to mind when I read what you wrote. Except I'd change "music" to "argument/comment".

     

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    JEDIDIAH, May 11th, 2012 @ 7:30am

    Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    I don't want to pay for cable. I despise commercial channels generally. HBO is already a-la-carte. They should offer their product independent of cable already. They need to stop living in the 70s. You should too.

     

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    Leigh Beadon (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 7:35am

    Re: Scientific Proof of the success of paywalls!

    Hi bob! Check the byline again. There's a good bob!

    So if we're going to grant HBO a modicum of "cultural significance" we've got to admit that the scientific method says that there's strong evidence that this is because of the paywall, not the torrent-based piracy.

    Um, how exactly? Both the paywall, and the extreme piracy, have been happening since pretty much the beginning. The "scientific method" does not just casually determine one to be the cause and the other to be irrelevant. I for one never claimed I had "scientifically" determined that piracy played a role - in the original post I clearly said it was speculation (I wasn't even so bold as to call it hypothesis, because there is no clear way of testing it)

     

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    bordy (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 7:36am

    Re: Scientific Proof of the success of paywalls!

    Which parts of your analysis are supported by "science"?

     

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    ChurchHatesTucker (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 7:49am

    Re: Re: ironic

    "Scene" (the definitive quality) releases always have credits. Pirates actually care about who worked on what.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 7:51am

    Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    I don't have cable. I can easily afford it, I just choose not to because for 9 months out of the year, I wouldn't turn my TV on. If I wanted Game of Thrones in HD, I wouldn't need just an HBO subscription, I would need a Cox cable subscription, an HD package, an HD converter box and an HBO subscription. That is $100 per month for 1 show.

    I have no problem giving HBO money. I would give them quite a bit of money, actually. I would give them significantly more than they would get from Cox for my subscription. They just refuse to accept my money unless I give a third party a lot of extra money.

     

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    bob, May 11th, 2012 @ 7:55am

    Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    1) HBO is essentially everywhere, even where there's no cable. I forgot about DirectTV. So no one in North America has an excuse to pirate it because they can't buy a legit copy.

    http://www.directv.com/DTVAPP/content/premiums/hbo

    2) "There's a huge difference. people want to pay, they just don't want to pay for $100 of unnecessary crap every month just to watch a TV show."


    So this gives them the right to take it? I want to pay for a BMW, but I want it at a Chevy price. What? BMW won't give it to me for that price? I'm just going to take it. I love your morals.

     

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    surfer (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 7:57am

    Re: Re: ironic

    emblazoned with watermarks for the broadcaster, TV show rating, in-show promotions for other shows, zippy graphics that obscure subtitles crucial to the show. things like that? were it not obtrusive enough to have 15 min of commercials in every 1 hour show,( thats 25%!!! ) you have to inject more shit onto the screen, typically to promote beer, condoms, human cock-fighting, or more beer.

    and please, for the love of all things beautiful in the world, please fit the zippy graphics, promotional crap to a WIDE SCREEN 16:9 format!! Nobody owns a square TV anymore.

    not to contradict, but 'this guy I know' gets all his entertainment digitally, and I, er, I mean 'he' has noticed that almost every TV rip and Movie contain the credits. Now I am not thinking altruistically, that the 'filthy pirate' that created such a wonderful distributable file, but it makes you wonder. If he took the time to rip out 15 min of commercials, not so tedious, yet left the credits in, it does give you a look at the psyche behind the 'filthy pirate', regardless of your opinion, it's a good thought exercise.

     

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    bob, May 11th, 2012 @ 7:57am

    Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    No. My response was to Mike's call for "legitimate versions". I'm sorry, but there's a very easy legit version: buying cable at whatever the insane price happens to be.

    What? You don't like the price? Tough beans. Just because you don't want to marry a girl doesn't mean you have a right to take whatever you want. Just because you want a Porsche at a Chevy price doesn't give you the right to just take it.

    Get some morals dude.

     

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    Leigh Beadon (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 7:59am

    Re: Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    Wait... explain to me what is being "taken" when someone pirates a show please.

     

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    surfer (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 8:00am

    Re: Re: Re: ironic

    Bingo, that's the answer. To prove its' authenticity.

    +5 internetz

     

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    bob, May 11th, 2012 @ 8:03am

    Re: Re: Scientific Proof of the success of paywalls!

    First, sorry not to notice that you're not the same person as Mike. Perhaps you should try articulating some different opinions so we can tell that you're not a clone. No one mistakes me for Mike around here.

    Second, you're right that you never used the word science. That's me.

    The paywall is the secret sauce here. If we just try releasing things for free through torrents, we get ignored. But if we try a paywall and some jerks just happen to release it for free on torrent sites, well, we get cultural significance.

    We've done the experiment and now we have scientific proof.

     

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    The eejit (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 8:07am

    Re: Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    And what about about those NOT in the US? WE want to watch it too. It's just that a good number of us would pay for a sub for just the shows we like, rather than paying a lot for the vast majority of the shite out there.

     

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    The eejit (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 8:07am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    16 jobs, a unicorn and bob's sanity.

     

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    PaulT (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 8:11am

    Re: Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    "1) HBO is essentially everywhere, even where there's no cable. I forgot about DirectTV. So no one in North America has an excuse to pirate it because they can't buy a legit copy."

    Is that available on its own? Because that still doesn't solve the problem if the customer still has to buy hundreds of dollars of unwanted crap. It *might* increase the number of people serviced by an insanely expensive option, but it doesn't address any other problem.

    Plus, you always forget the 3rd option - do without. If piracy suddenly disappeared and the choices were not to watch HBO content and pay $100/month to watch it, most would choose the latter. I fail to see how this helps HBO. The "waaah! piracy!" excuses would disappear, but HBO would be making less money.

    "So this gives them the right to take it? "

    Why are you morons incapable of understanding there's a difference between "this is reality, piracy is happening and this is why" and "I support everything that every pirate does".

    Perhaps you would understand people better if you weren't putting words into their mouths and attacking them for things they've never said. Oh, and stop with the physical analogies. You people are horrible at them.

    "I love your morals."

    You would if you bothered to read what they actually were.

     

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    Eponymous Coward (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 8:12am

    Re: Re: Scientific Proof of the success of paywalls!

    Show me on this doll where the paywall touched you.

    Sorry, had to do it :)

     

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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 8:13am

    Re: Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    You do know it wasn't Mike who wrote the article right?

    Regarding "legitimate versions", again, you ignore that people DON'T WANT TO PAY FOR THINGS THEY DON'T WANT/NEED. A cable/satellite subscription to just watch one show is most definitely not the answer. They want just one show. Offer it in other legitimate ways is what they're saying. Ala iTunes, ala Netflix, ala a Pay Per Download directly from HBO. Something. Anything but "pay for a whole lotta other stuff that you won't actually watch".

    And please, stop with bad analogies. What does not wanting to marry a girl have to do with wanting to pay for ONE show only? And sorry, but the Porsche analogy is even worse. Why? Because you can get a Porsche for the price of a Chevy. Locally, about a month back, there was some severe thunderstorms with hail. Guess what? You could buy any BMW from the dealership for under $4,000. Were they all damaged? Nope. Some had like a minor dent/ding here or there. Some were beyond worth paying even that much for. A smart consumer shops around. In every industry but the entertainment one can you find what you want at a price that is reasonable and in multiple offerings. EVERY SINGLE OTHER INDUSTRY.

    Get some brains, dude. FYI, morals are very subjective. He probably has better morals than you do. That much is evident to me by his not showing up on a high horse like someone...

     

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    bordy (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 8:17am

    Re: Re: Re: ironic

    Honest query: by what standards should a netizen judge a release group and it's offerings?

     

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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 8:31am

    Re: Re: Re: Scientific Proof of the success of paywalls!

    God, you are fucking retarded.

     

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    Leigh Beadon (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 8:36am

    Re: Re: Re: Scientific Proof of the success of paywalls!

    Uh-huh.... okay, well, I shall counter with an equally "scientific" argument: a unicorn told me I'm right and then the raindrops spelled out "bob doesn't know what science means"

     

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  66.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 8:40am

    Re: FU HBO

    They really do seem to prefer nothing to something, don't they?

     

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    Eponymous Coward (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 8:42am

    Re: Re: Re: Scientific Proof of the success of paywalls!

    Talking science, eh? Well, let's proceed down that path a bit.

    You have here an anecdote, a single instance, proving nothing apart from "this is how it happened this time". If you want something approaching proof, you're going to need a bit more rigor in your method. Here's what I propose:

    Create 3 unique products of equal quality and general appeal (this is the tricky bit). For the first, put it behind a paywall with no possible way to obtain it apart from going through said paywall. The second, behind a paywall with options to circumvent the paywall. The third, open and free to all.

    Release these products into the wild and see what happens, then report your findings back to us. I'll make no predictions, and I'll encourage you to refrain from speaking in absolutes until you've tested your hypothesis.

    Anecdotally, I pirate the hell out of the current season of GoT because, with cable and HBO package upgrades, it would cost me about $50/month to watch it "legally". I pay for my basic cable and watch a fair amount of programs there, so the aggregate value is solid, but there is no reasonable pricing plan for current GoT content. I bought the first season on DVD (then ripped/converted it for portability and ease of use), and, again, WOULD PAY for the current season, but there's no way to buy only that, so HBO can pound sand until Season 2 comes out on DVD.

    In closing, please seed.

     

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  68.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 8:43am

    Re: Re: Overpriced HBO

    It's like the only way I can get rosewood is to buy a car with rosewood accents in it.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 8:45am

    Re: Re:

    I'd club you with a baby seal to watch Doctor Who.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 8:54am

    Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    Yeah, just buy a bunch of stuff you don't need or want to get access to the stuff you do. It's so simple! Assuming it's available in your area, some people don't even have the option of paying for a dozen dozen channels they don't want just to watch this one show.

    How is asking for a version you pay HBO for not a legitimate version? Or do you have no notion what-so-ever of what putting so-called and quotes around something actually means? If it's offered by HBO directly it's a legit version.

    They sure are acting entitled and it's not in their best interests and It's sad.

     

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    Eponymous Coward (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 8:56am

    Re: Scientific Proof of the success of paywalls!

    I especially like the part where you bring Global Warming into the mix. Non sequitur FTFW!

     

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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 8:58am

    Re: Scientific Proof of the success of paywalls!

    "It collects the money directly instead of forcing the audience to support the show by purchasing a t-shirt they don't want to wear."

    HAHHAHHAHHAHHHHAAHAHHAHHA

    This from the guy that says 'Hey, just buy basic cable so you can buy HBO.'

    What a fucking joke.

    By your inane logic if you took the torrent only shows and put them on HBO and took the HBO shows and made them torrent-only the two groups would magically flip positions on cultural significance.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 8:59am

    Re: Re: Re: Scientific Proof of the success of paywalls!

    TIL bob understands as much about the scientific method as he does about everything else.

     

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    iambinarymind (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 9:00am

    Cutting the Cord a Fad?!

    So HBO co-president Eric Kessler believes that cutting the cord is "a fad"?

    That maybe could have been a legitimate argument a few years ago, but today with Netflix/Hulu/VODO/"other avenues"...Mr. Kessler is ridiculously out of touch with reality.

    So called "piracy" is a servicing issue.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 9:05am

    Re: Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    Who said anything about a 'right' to infringe? We're talking about the practical effects here. Rights don't enter into it at all. It's very clear that if the price dropped and availability was more ubiquitous (if only there was a world wide network of interconnected tubes through which content could be delivered) there would be less infringement and more money in it for HBO. By your own logic more money means more cultural significance so you should be all for it.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 9:07am

    Re: Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    The point of the article is that the only legit version is overpriced and unavailable completely in many areas. It doesn't solve the customers problem of how to get legit access to the show.

    Rights on both side are completely irrelevant to the discussion. You can scream about morals until you're blue in the face and it's not going to change anything about the consequences of HBO's decision. It's costing them money because they're stuck in the past and are too stubborn to change.

     

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    Greg G, May 11th, 2012 @ 9:09am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Scientific Proof of the success of paywalls!

    +1 insightful

     

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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 9:12am

    When HBO starts maintaining the cable lines to your house, hires an army of vans to drive around your neighborhood to install HBO-Cable, then you can get HBO by itself. And it will be $100 a month.

    Until then you have to pay the people who do these things, your cable company. HBO just piggybacks off of this service that's offered by your cable company. And that's the reason you can't get it by itself.

    Remember ON tv, where you had a box that just said off & ON You basically paid for ONE channel, and guess what, it wasn't $15

    While I agree that HBO is dumb for not offering episodes of their shows via iTunes, etc. That's their choice. And it doesn't justify pirating the show.

    When The Sopranos was on, I didn't watch it because I didn't have HBO. I did however wait until after all the seasons were out on DVD and bought all 7 seasons USED for I think about $75. And because I bought them used, HBO saw no revenue from me, and I got to watch the show. I now have all the discs and I can rip them, loan them or use them as frisbees if I so choose to.

    You can play by the rules and still stick it to the man.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 9:17am

    Re: Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    I pay for it and pirate it. Morals are weird.

     

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    Weegordon, May 11th, 2012 @ 9:22am

    STOP JUSTIFYING pirates.

    Honestly I am getting tired of these sleazy pirates justifying their actions by saying things like " Make it available for all " etc etc.
    Here are the facts:

    HBO follows a business model where people *MUST* buy their premium services for watching their shows. IF you don't like this model,wait for the DVD/Bluray release or DON"T WATCH THE SHOW.PERIOD. Don't justify your piracy actions.

     

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    Benjo (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 9:29am

    Re:

    You bought seven seasons of a show you never watched for 75$? For most people that is quite a plunge, and I daresay they would rather spend the 5m it takes to bittorrent a few episodes to see if they like it first.

    It's not about sticking it to the man. Most people want to support shows they like, if its at all possible and within their budget. It's not their fault that all these companies have half-century old business models.

    Piracy is a force that every company making digital goods has to deal with at some point. Understanding why people are pirating your software/media can help you make better business decisions.

     

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    Benjo (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 9:31am

    Re: STOP JUSTIFYING pirates.

    You should hope that most people don't think the way you do, or we are going to watch the US legislate itself into economic stagnation.

     

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    DC, May 11th, 2012 @ 9:33am

    Re: Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    And once again, the car stealing analogy. Truly brilliant.

     

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    DC, May 11th, 2012 @ 9:43am

    Re:

    Or HBO could stream it from their website. Did you miss that part?

     

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    Eponymous Coward (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 9:44am

    Re: STOP JUSTIFYING pirates.

    I, for one, am not trying to justify. I am trying to explain. Call it Free-Market Disobedience, if you will.

    Here are a couple facts for you:

    Shows like GoT are freely and readily available in HD quality within hours of airing.

    Torrenting and streaming are easy, convenient, and, if you take some care, nigh on impossible to stop or police.

    There are certain among the torrent/streaming crowd who would pay for these shows if there were a convenient and reasonably priced service through which to do so.

    There is no convenient and reasonably priced service through which to download/stream these shows.


    When you consider the above facts, this sleazy pirate (read: lost customer) will choose to circumvent the established distribution channels until such time as HBO's business model becomes more agreeable.

    Disclaimer: Not all sleazy pirates are lost customers, but I feel safe in saying that I'm not the only one.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 9:47am

    Re: Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    "So this gives them the right to take it? I want to pay for a BMW, but I want it at a Chevy price. What? BMW won't give it to me for that price? I'm just going to take it. I love your morals."

    Chevy prices to be found?
    Nope
    BMW cost?
    1 million
    Who can afford it?
    A certain type of people
    Why?
    Quick buck or million......per transaction.....maximum gain
    Will i support this business mentality as an AVERAGE consumer?
    FUCK NO, you puppet, Id rather buy second hand, thankyou fucking much,

    and if anyone here is drinking thE "koolaid" my delusional corporate "friend", that'll be the one preaching the words of a system set up to butt rape the AVERAGE consumer, all the while saying

    please sir, can i have some more

    You cant apply the "koolaid" defence on those with an independant thought, which happens to be the same independant thoughts going through other independant thinking peoples

    Implying that we are influenced by an organisation such as google for instance would be in your part either ignorant, a lie, or just your pathetic attempt at propaganda

    Bob, you are either well off, or you do not consume nearly enough media to realise the amount of money it would take to view ALL media available around the world

    Corporations would have an interest in limiting said media in order to maximise profit, in the internet age, thats fucking redundant

    Whats that bob?.....enti......enti....entitlement, you say

    Its called progress, the same kind of progress that allowed hollywood to set up shop all those years ago, away from those looking to cash in on other peoples sucess, or be crushed under the pressure by the status quo

    Seems history is repeating its self, and in this case, your role at the moment is to stifle hollywods sucess

    You know what ignore everything ive just said, this next bit feels alot more satisfying

    DUMBASS

     

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    BrownFrown, May 11th, 2012 @ 9:47am

    I want to pay!

    I want to pay for Game Of Thrones only! The rest of HBO is recycled movies from the eighties. It seems hard for me to pay a subscription for only ONE show... If there was only an affordable la carte subscription and pay for only shows YOU want I would stop pirating.. I have practically stopped pirating music. Services like Pandora and Groov Shark fill my need... and I use Netflix and Hulu FIRST.. if what Im looking for is not available or affordable only then will I pirate it

     

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    DC, May 11th, 2012 @ 9:48am

    Re: STOP JUSTIFYING pirates.

    I think most of the arguments being made are that HBO doesn't need the base cost of cable added to its premium subscription model.

    Most of these arguments are that HBO doesn't need a distribution channel that costs 5 to 10 times the cost of the premium to serve its customers.

    The arguments being made are that HBO is rejecting a large number of potential customers.

    Piracy is just a side effect.

     

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    DC, May 11th, 2012 @ 9:50am

    Re: Scientific Proof of the success of paywalls!

    Who wound bob up today?

     

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    Bill (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 9:54am

    My opinion: Game of Thrones and Deadwood are the best HBO has ever had. Rome was a distant 3rd place.

     

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    bordy (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 10:00am

    Re: STOP JUSTIFYING pirates.

    Old Guard Entertainment Cronies: Accept the fact of life that piracy is not "curable" - if you're personally troubled when your copyrighted material is infringed, INNOVATE or STFU. Don't go rent-seeking and lobby for increasingly draconian IP legislation to support a business model that is falling more out-of-sync with a digital economy.

    Turn about is fair play, no?

    Of course pirates don't respect your IP -- very many are still your customers, or could be, and as much as you loathe their actions, they are as equally offended (justifiably) by your aversion to a digital and consumer-friendly economy.

     

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    RD, May 11th, 2012 @ 10:03am

    Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    "I don't buy HBO. I don't think it's worth it. But if there's a show I want to see, I wait until it's out on DVD. That's their business model and they're entitled to it. "

    Yeah, because everything always automatically comes out on DVD. Pray, tell, where can I purchase a (legit) full/uncut copy of Song of the South by Disney? Oh thats right, its NEVER BEEN RELEASED ON HOME VIDEO. It is not always a given, so just "waiting" isn't always a solution. How about region-restricted sales? Want to share your glorious wisdom on how someone is supposed to "buy" a DVD not offered AT ALL in their part of the world? What, they should move to another COUNTRY if they want to see it? Or do you just pull the "they will just have to do without" card, because thats a GREAT way to build an audience and sell your product: fuck them if they can't see it.

     

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    Watchit (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 10:06am

    Re: Re: The same issue, in draw

    Hey, just because you know it, doesn't mean everyone else knows it.

     

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    Watchit (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 10:08am

    Re:

    No, they want your money... they just want all of it as well as an arm and a leg.

     

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    Bill (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 10:11am

    Re: I want to pay!

    I have practically stopped pirating music. Services like Pandora and Groov Shark fill my need

    Same with me. I have subscribed to Pandora for the last two years. Since I got the subscription I haven't downloaded much music at all.

     

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    TtfnJohn (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 10:11am

    Re: Re: Scientific Proof of the success of paywalls!

    Cable companies and HBO will happily sell you tshirts at inflated rates, too. But bob doesn't seem to understand that part.

    Game of Thrones shirts go on sale at the end of Season Two at only $300 a pop. You don't really need that new suit for work, do you? ;-)

     

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    Colin, May 11th, 2012 @ 10:14am

    Re: Re: Re: The same issue, in draw

    But when it's linked to in the original article...

     

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    bob, May 11th, 2012 @ 10:17am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    If people choose the third option and do without-- something I do myself-- then HBO has only itself to blame. If there aren't any options available at the price you want to pay, tough.

    And insisting on buying HBO separately is another sophism. Many content systems are subscription-based and you must take the good with the bad. Magazines, newspapers, and cable. Even the book business has subscription services like the Book of the Month Club designed to give people bulk discounts.

    Just think of cable as a bulk discount.

    And I'm certain that everyone around here would be complaining and asking for a bulk discount if the cable businesses forced everything to be pay-per-view.

    So the fact remains: there is a nice legit option. If you don't like the $100+ cable bill, don't pay it and buy DVDs. That's what I do. That will send them a much better message than pirating.

     

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    bob, May 11th, 2012 @ 10:19am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    More often than not, there's a local alternative. BSkyB bought the entire HBO catalog:

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/2010/jul/29/bskyb-buys-hbo-tv-catalogue

    Just look around. There's more to the Internet than just the torrent finders. You might find a legit option.

     

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    Watchit (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 10:19am

    Re: STOP JUSTIFYING pirates.

    Why should you care if I watch the show or not if I wasn't going to pay the ridiculous prices they have now anyway? If it was priced within the range I would be willing to buy, but then I pirated it anyway then you can call shenanigans on me.

    And I'm not a pirate, I'm a space viking. :3

     

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    Colin, May 11th, 2012 @ 10:21am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    The keys to the paywall.

     

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    bob, May 11th, 2012 @ 10:22am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    Is HBO charging too much? For me, yes. But pricing is a complex process and there's no easy way to set a good price for everyone.

    Alas, I don't believe that cheaper prices would mean less piracy. Everyone says that around here, but I haven't seen the evidence. Apple and Amazon have revolutionized content delivery. It's much easier to use their system then the cruddy torrent browsers. The only catch is that you must pay for it.

    I think there's a big block of people who are just tooo cheap. Then they sit around and look to this blog for intellectual justification for taking someone's hard work without compensating them. Oh sure, they complain when a big corporation takes work without paying, but they think it's okay for themselves to do it.

     

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    TtfnJohn (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 10:24am

    All in all I'd rather watch Game of Thrones and see flashes of cast nudity rather than anything including nudity of Eric Kessler. ;-)

    Now that that's out of the way bob or no bob if the entertainment vendor won't make what they have available simply, easily and at the lowest cost possible including streaming and torrenting then fans of the show shut out for whatever reason will...ahhhhh...pirate. Even if they'd much sooner pay if they only could.

    Fad or no fad if HBO is not doing faddish things like streaming or, even, torrenting the show they're losing money they'd otherwise be bringing in.

    This is known as cutting off your nose to spite your face.

     

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  104.  
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    Colin, May 11th, 2012 @ 10:26am

    Re:

    While I agree that HBO is dumb for not offering episodes of their shows via iTunes, etc. That's their choice. And it doesn't justify pirating the show.

    No one's saying it's justified. They're saying it's happening.

     

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  105.  
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    bob, May 11th, 2012 @ 10:30am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    I'll tell you what's being taken. You can continue with this sophistry while patting yourself on the back and telling yourself that you're not taking anything, you're not depriving anyone of anything.

    But you are. You're depriving the world of fairness and economic justice. The people who buy legit subscriptions need to pay more because the company can't recoup their costs from the freeloaders.

    In many cases, the people who get stuck with the extra costs are the ones who aren't so smart. Maybe they're older. Maybe their daddy didn't buy them a big fat Internet pipe. Maybe they're just not so good with computers.

    You're basically saying, "Tough nuts, morons. I'm smart and I can use torrents to not pay. My daddy got me a fat pipe and not you. I'm just going to be laughing at you suckers while I download and refuse to pay for the slice of the pie I'm eating."

    In essence, you're picking the pockets of the retired folks who can't work a torrent system. You're forcing the undereducated folks to pay more just to feed your habit. You're sticking it to the poor who can't afford the extra $40 for the fat Internet pipe.

    Face it bub: you're taking fairness and economic justice from the world.

     

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  106.  
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    bob, May 11th, 2012 @ 10:35am

    Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    Face it. Most of the things for sale are on sale for a subscription. You want a cookie, you've got to buy a box. You want to drive on a road, the government taxes you for all of them. You want to read a magazine article, you've got to get a subscription.

    The economy has evolved this way because it's more efficient. Sometimes things evolve to support the pay-per-view model-- Apple's iTunes is a good example-- but often they don't. It's just too inefficient.

    Let me ask you a question: are you also the kind of person who's complaining about how wireless companies are now metering you by the megabyte? Are you complaining that Netflix doesn't have enough cool new shows available for one fixed price?

    I don't buy cable because I don't like the price. But I fully support their right to bundle things in arbitrary ways. I wish they didn't, but that's how life works. It's often too inefficient to unbundle everything.

     

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  107.  
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    lj, May 11th, 2012 @ 10:35am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    What is "sophistry" on Bob's word of the day calendar?

     

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  108.  
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    Lowestofthekeys (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 10:35am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    "Alas, I don't believe that cheaper prices would mean less piracy."

    There's numerous factors contributing to the swell of piracy, not just pricing but quality. These companies have an obligation, if they still want to get our money, to provide a better product.

    If you weren't so blinded by your anti-piracy stance, you'd see it, but you're more than willing to be ignorant and silent when companies treat their consumers poorly, and frankly that only decreases any credibility you have commenting here.

     

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  109.  
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    bob, May 11th, 2012 @ 10:38am

    Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    Pray, tell, where can I purchase a legit copy of your diaries, journals, tax records, or unfinished novel? What? You think it's your right to do what you want with your papers? Oh my. You probably think that it's wrong for the government to spy on your communications too.

    My feeling is that it's their choice. They made. They put the money up. They can choose to do what they want. Just like you can choose what to do with your creations.

     

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  110.  
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    lj, May 11th, 2012 @ 10:40am

    Re: Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    the economy is still evolving, so sad it doesn't fit with your view of "economic justice"

     

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  111.  
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    bob, May 11th, 2012 @ 10:40am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    Yeah, yeah, yeah. It's just another rationalization. First, the cheapskates around here said they would stop pirating once there was an easy to use system. Then they changed their tune with iTunes came along.

    So you're new game is saying that iTunes won't give it to you in the right format. Waaahhh.

    Cheap couch potatoes will always come up with some rationalization not to pay their fair share.

     

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  112.  
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    Lowestofthekeys (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 10:42am

    Re: Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    "The economy has evolved this way because it's more efficient. Sometimes things evolve to support the pay-per-view model-- Apple's iTunes is a good example-- but often they don't. It's just too inefficient."

    What if one company tried to control how "efficiently" the economy evolved? The term is subjective, and the RIAA has fought to extinguish what they was "inefficient" before.

    Take for example Itunes...you don't even know the hell Apple had to go through to get the RIAA execs to greenlight their Itunes model. Though if Apple had held your "that's how life works" attitude, paying ten bucks for a CD when you only wanted one song would have have continued on a lot longer.

    "I don't buy cable because I don't like the price. But I fully support their right to bundle things in arbitrary ways. I wish they didn't, but that's how life works. It's often too inefficient to unbundle everything."

    Let me ask you this...are consumers wrong for complaining that a company does things in an arbitrary way?

     

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  113.  
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    bob, May 11th, 2012 @ 10:43am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    So it's overpriced. That's their choice. If they don't want to change, it's their tough luck, right?

    The problem is that it's almost certainly not costing them money. They know what the market will bear and they spend plenty of time watching how often that people cancel their subscriptions to cable. They know when it's too much.

    And while it might be too much for you, most of America thinks differently. They're willing to pay. So I bet it's not costing them money. In fact, it's making them enough to buy health coverage for a bunch of artists. That's good in my book.

     

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  114.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 10:45am

    Re: STOP JUSTIFYING pirates.

    "IF you don't like this model,wait for the DVD/Bluray release or DON"T WATCH THE SHOW.PERIOD. Don't justify your piracy actions."

    I'd rather wait for an upstart company to make and improve a NEW business model, which caters to ALL consumers, including those brushed aside by the old stagnate ways

    Would a company, catering to the needs and wants of a market, which happens to be in direct competition to a long standing and well established media corporation/s, ever be allowed to flourish, i dont know, why dont you ask Mr Dotcom, and the very early stages of his attempt

    Theres is a market, if they choose to ignore it, then they deserve to loose profit, if they continue to abuse their established influence in the market to block other companies who want to cater to that market, a market, artificially created by these established media companies

    And its not all about piracy, cheaper second hand products for will do just as well

    "Thats business" is not gonna cut it, when that "business" is actively blocked from evolving

     

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  115.  
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    bob, May 11th, 2012 @ 10:47am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    Consumers can and should complain, but that doesn't mean the company is going to listen. In many cases, they can't.

    HBO shows are very, very, very expensive to make. They can't just put them on Netflix and pay for them with the pennies they get for each viewing.

    So you can complain all you want, but it doesn't mean the company can afford to listen to your plaints. It's just economics. You can't get just tell Porsche to start pricing their cars like Yugos. Somethings got to give.

     

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  116.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 10:50am

    Re:

    +1 for deadwood

     

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  117.  
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    Lowestofthekeys (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 10:50am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    Cheap couch potatoes? Well, hell man at least they're looking for solutions here instead of pointing their fingers at everyone and calling them "pirates" when they don't agree with a companies method of distribution.

     

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  118.  
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    bob, May 11th, 2012 @ 10:53am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Scientific Proof of the success of paywalls!

    While I used an anecdote, the content industry has been running this experiment for years and years and years.

    Why are the production values on movies higher than ad-supported TV? Because the ads don't yield as much money as the box office.

    In the meantime, people have been playing with Internet-based television for years. YouTube is littered with them. Some are dumb, some are pretty good and most have some redeeming value. But none of them are close to having the cultural significance of HBO or anything on regular networks.

    We've been running this experiment for years. "We Need Girlfriends" is over five years old now. Yet on Saturday night, we head to the movie theaters.

    So it's not one anecdote. Can you point to any web-based, freely distributed show that's got as many viewers as a low-grade cable network?

     

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  119.  
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    bob, May 11th, 2012 @ 10:55am

    Re:

    Thank god there are a few others who believe these kind of things.

     

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  120.  
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    Josh in CharlotteNC (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 10:56am

    Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    Hey, if you want to see the show, buy cable.

    I'll pay $5 per episode of GOT. Why does HBO want me to buy cable when they would make LESS money from me if they offered a downloadable option themselves, plus force me to pay for a whole bunch of crap I don't want or need?

    Time Warner price list for my area:

    Digital TV $85.49/mo
    If bundled with Time Warner Cable Internet $82.49/mo

    Equipment
    Digital Box (Each) $6.46 ea/mo
    Universal Remote Control $0.36 ea/mo

    Premium Channels
    One premiums $15.99/mo

    Standard Internet (10 Mbps download, 1 Mbps upload)
    Standalone $57.95/mo
    With Digital TV $50.45/mo

    Ok, so for 10 episodes of GOT per season, HBO would get $50 from me if they offered a DRM-free HD downloadable option online.

    However, if I buy cable, even if Time Warner gives them every penny of the premium subscription (which they don't), they'd get $47.98. And I would need to pay an extra $396.78 above that for something I don't need.

    So, thanks, but no thanks. I'll pirate it.

    I'm not costing them a penny. They are refusing to give me an option to pay them $50, for content they have already made and in which they could trivially setup a way to sell it to me.

     

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  121.  
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    bob, May 11th, 2012 @ 10:57am

    Re: Re:

    Sure there are. Read up above. People call me four letter words just because I suggest that it's not justified. There are plenty of people up above saying that they're justified in pirating the HBO shows because HBO won't unbundle them.

     

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  122.  
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    Lowestofthekeys (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 10:57am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    HBO has it's own form of Netflix...so the process is do-able, but the like the studios they do not trust Netflix with the security of their shows. So it's obviously not a financial risk (plus HBO has 60 million subscribers worldwide) for them to stream their shows over the internet, and even if they did there's methods of making money with ads that they don't use on the cable channel.

     

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  123.  
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    Lowestofthekeys (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 11:00am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Scientific Proof of the success of paywalls!

    Comparing internet to tv? Are you insane, that's like comparing apples and oranges.

    Besides, time has been a factor in companies like HBO establishing themselves. No web-based tv series has had the time to accrue 60 million subscribers. You're also forgetting there's a lot more competition for web-based tv series than HBO

     

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  124.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 11:04am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    Yes, do please continue to preach the holding back of progress one shiny piece of plastic at a time.

    Market dictates. Fail to meet its needs at your own peril.

     

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  125.  
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    bob, May 11th, 2012 @ 11:07am

    Re: Re: Scientific Proof of the success of paywalls!

    "bob" is just "Mike" commenting as "Leigh" pretending to be "bob" in order to drive up comment counts, as required by Big Piracy. I put their names in parentheses because in actuality none of them exist - they're just bots. I know this because I have never met any of them in person. Have you?

     

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  126.  
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    Leigh Beadon (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 11:08am

    Re: Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    Stop conflating copyright with privacy, bob. They are not the same thing.

    Everyone has a right to keep information to themselves. It's when they decide to share it - even once - that they begin to lose control over it. That used to be a slow process, held back by distribution limitations. Now it's almost instant. Share once and you've shared with the world.

     

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  127.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 11:10am

    Re: Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    So if they choose not to sell it, then why the bitching when it's made available by someone else? They weren't making any money off it anyway BY THEIR OWN CHOICE.

    Market has no morals, only wants or needs. It's not going to wait around to be fed if it doesn't have to.

     

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  128.  
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    RD, May 11th, 2012 @ 11:10am

    Re: Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    "Pray, tell, where can I purchase a legit copy of your diaries, journals, tax records, or unfinished novel? What? You think it's your right to do what you want with your papers? Oh my. You probably think that it's wrong for the government to spy on your communications too.

    My feeling is that it's their choice. They made. They put the money up. They can choose to do what they want. Just like you can choose what to do with your creations."

    Uh uh, no, thats not the same, you don't get to roll out something that ridiculous and get away with it.

    If you have private, unfinished, etc work that is NOT the same as a product you release to the public for consumption. To conflate the two as a way to counter my question is specious and misleading.

    When you put something out for the public to consume (paid or not) you get certain LIMITED rights via copyright. It's not a blanket set of absolute control. If you are so concerned with infringing or unpaid consumption, then DON'T RELEASE IT. Just like no one is holding a gun to my head to consume it, no one is holding a gun to your head to put it out there either. If you put something out, one of 3 things happens:

    1) The public ignores it and it doesnt sell (this is what happens to the VAST majority of stuff out there, and is THE single biggest problem, not piracy)

    2) The public likes it and wants to see/consume it, but can't due to factors like restricted access, limited funds, region blocks, waiting a year for DVD etc. This leads to piracy. Most piracy is less about price than these other factors. If you block a country of 65 million people from being able to see your show, don't be surprised if they find other means. Thats a lot of potential viewers that are just cut off from the get-go.

    3) The public likes it and pays for it in some manner (if there is a method for them to do so.)

    #1 is what happens in 95% of all creative output. #2 is what mostly happens when something is popular and indeed usually contributes to the popularity despite the restrictions.

    You still didn't answer my question: where can I get Song of the South? I have money, ready to buy. If I can't buy, which option do you think will happen? If it has NEVER BEEN available, then it has been abandoned as a product. Please explain how I am morally or ethically wrong in doing so when there is NO other legit option to be had?

     

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  129.  
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    Lowestofthekeys (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 11:12am

    Re:

    I wholeheartedly agree you can play by the rules.

    My only issue is that these companies try to stem the rate of progress as seen here - http://www.freepress.net/node/75731

    There's a balanced way to make money off of progress, and it doe snot involve stunting it's growth.

     

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  130.  
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    RD, May 11th, 2012 @ 11:14am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    "Yeah, yeah, yeah. It's just another rationalization. First,
    the cheapskates around here said they would stop pirating once there was an easy to use system. Then they changed their tune with iTunes came along. "

    Horseshit. I have netflix, I pay for whatever I can watch there. Gladly too. I don't seem to be alone in this, as there are many others who do as well.

    Your iTunes example is bogus. No one ever said it would "stop" piracy. What it DID do, and the lesson that Big Media seems to not be able to get, is it MONETIZED a lot of them and created a NEW revenue stream where there wasn't one before. Seems this is a lesson you don't get either.

     

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  131.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 11:29am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    "So it's overpriced. That's their choice. If they don't want to change, it's their tough luck, right?"

    Yeah, that's the gist of what the article said. Coupled with some frustration that they were letting that happen.

    "The problem is that it's almost certainly not costing them money. They know what the market will bear and they spend plenty of time watching how often that people cancel their subscriptions to cable. They know when it's too much."

    This is as obviously false as it is ludicrous.

    "And while it might be too much for you, most of America thinks differently."

    Ad hom aside it's evident from the rampant infringement that many of their fans do not, in fact, think differently.

    You live in some fairy land where whatever price it is is obviously the best price because that's what the price is. It's circular logic that completely ignores the very real possibility, in light of the evidence on hand near absolute certainty in fact, that the price was set poorly to begin with.

     

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  132.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 11:30am

    Re: Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    "It's just too inefficient."

    Wow. You're a full blown parody of yourself at this point.

     

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  133.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 11:34am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    You don't see a problem with a company the insists on making sure the legit options are much harder to find than torrents? Who am I kidding, of course you don't.

     

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  134.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 11:35am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    What's the difference from HBO's perspective between infringing and doing without?

    Nothing.

     

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  135.  
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    iambinarymind (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 11:38am

    Re: Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    "Face it. Most of the things for sale are on sale for a subscription. You want a cookie, you've got to buy a box. You want to drive on a road, the government taxes you for all of them. You want to read a magazine article, you've got to get a subscription."

    You're comparing apples to oranges to bananas.
    - A cookie is in the physical world & is scarce. When purchased it is a voluntary exchange.
    - Government owned roads are also in the physical world & are scarce, however, they are funded through theft & coercion. Not a voluntary exchange.
    - A magazine article could be in the physical world of scarcity or in the digital world of non-scarcity. A voluntary exchange if the publisher decides to charge for access.

    "The economy has evolved this way because it's more efficient. Sometimes things evolve to support the pay-per-view model-- Apple's iTunes is a good example-- but often they don't. It's just too inefficient."

    You could legitimately make the efficiency argument if the exchange in question were purely voluntary. However, government intervention/force permeates so much of the current economic state of affairs, it's next to impossible to find a market not molested by the violence of the State.

    People are going to copy things like "Game of Thrones" no matter what the situation. So it would make the most economic sense for HBO to create various services with more value than .torrent's to entice people to purchase through competition (rather than resorting to State violence via "the law").

    Persuade through voluntary means and all will benefit.

    Continue implementing State violence through the censorship that is "intellectual property" and all will suffer.

     

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  136.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 11:40am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    You haven't seen the evidence because you're willfully blind to it. It's been presented over and over. Just type HADOPI into the search box up at the top right and you'll get a list with an article near the top with evidence that the raise of effective content delivery results in less infringement. You just have to open your eyes and read it.

     

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  137.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 11:53am

    Re:

    "I now have all the discs and I can rip them"

    Damn dirty pirate!

     

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  138.  
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    Simon, May 11th, 2012 @ 11:56am

    Re: Re: Re: ironic

    4:3 isn't square [/pedant].

    P.S I'll be back after I've checked your grammar.

     

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  139.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 11:59am

    Re: STOP JUSTIFYING pirates.

    You first. Stop justifying pig-headed business models. Stop making excuses for the entitled and selfish. Don't justify their stubborn actions.

     

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  140.  
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    every_tomorrow, May 11th, 2012 @ 12:13pm

    Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    I don't have cable. I don't even want cable. Game of Thrones is the only thing on cable I'm currently interested in watching.

    My cable provider's cheapest package that you can get HBO with (they won't give you any premium channels if you have the VERY cheapest package) is $64/month. HD is $10 extra. HBO is another $20, so in order to watch Game of Thrones in HD I'd have to pay $94/month for cable and HBO.

    There is literally no way I can legally obtain access to the show without paying $94/month. Well, I guess I could watch it in standard def... for the low, low price of $84/month.

    Seriously I'd pay for this show on iTunes or Amazon or whatever if they'd let me, but they won't.

     

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  141.  
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    Eponymous Coward (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 12:33pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Scientific Proof of the success of paywalls!

    You're missing the part where the products need to be of equal quality and appeal. I'm waiting for one content producer to have the stones to pilot a program where you can watch online for a nominal price, and download for a slightly higher price.

    Louis CK had what appeared to be a pretty rousing success doing this, but again the matter of equal quality and appeal is subject to debate.

    I'll be reasonable, even if HBO suddenly offered their original offerings in this manner, people would still pirate them. However, I don't doubt that they would see a revenue bump as those lost customers would suddenly have an avenue to make the purchase. Bottom line, I don't see how it could hurt them to attract more paying customers from a group that is already showing that they like and follow the show. As it stands, their attitude shows an unwillingness to change that galls me.

    Once upon a time, HBO was an innovator. They need to find their way back to that.

     

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  142.  
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    Chris, May 11th, 2012 @ 12:34pm

    Re: Overpriced HBO

    3 Shows x 4 Eps/mo = 12 episodes. 16/12= $1.33 per show/episode. That's pretty reasonable man. Think of the hourly cost of other things you happily pay for. I'm not arguing that HBO isn't making bad decisions, but you sound kind of ridiculous whining about that aspect.

     

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  143.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 12:41pm

    Re: Re:

    No one said anything about the shit island.

     

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  144.  
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    Chris, May 11th, 2012 @ 12:44pm

    Re: Re: Overpriced HBO

    You can get sky atlantic.

     

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  145.  
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    Vince, May 11th, 2012 @ 12:59pm

    Re:

    Hehe! Awesome vintage reference. Now, spank Max Headroom.

     

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  146.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 1:35pm

    Re:

    think the iron price is you keep what you take, by any means necessary...

     

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  147.  
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    BentFranklin (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 1:35pm

    Cord cutting is a fad, just like home foreclosures are a fad.

     

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  148.  
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    Ed C., May 11th, 2012 @ 1:36pm

    Re: Re: Overpriced HBO

    It's not three shows per month, every month, it's three shows per year. The real figures would be:

    3(shows) * ~12 episodes/year = 36 episodes/year
    $16/month * 12months/year = $192/year.

    The average would be: $192/36 = ~$5.33/episode.

     

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  149.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 2:37pm

    Re:

    They may intend to buy it, but if the company waits two years until fans don't care about the show anymore, they might not be able to convince themselves to buy it out of obligation only.

    Timing is everything. (Well, timing and convenience. And price. And quality.)

     

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  150.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 2:51pm

    Re:

    If you live in Australia, you wait 2 weeks for series 2. Completely different story for series 1, I'm told.

    As an American who waited over a year for several BBC shows to arrive here while all my friends online were busy getting excited about them, I sympathize with people in markets where local stations wait until the first series is long done abroad before checking the ratings and deciding to buy. The gap tends to close a bit after that for popular shows, but I've seen shows where even series 2 or 3 weren't available until months after airing. In the internet age, that's not the first local release - it's syndication.

     

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  151.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 3:01pm

    Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    Mike didnt defend piracy. He suggested that HBO is not capitalizing on the show's popularity and that the popularity does stem in large part from piracy. HBO could blaze a trail and create a totally new and truly viable way to connect content creators with viewers. But they think the cable model is their long term best bet. They could not be more wrong and are squandering a tremendous opportunity.

     

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  152.  
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    Dave Allen, May 11th, 2012 @ 3:03pm

    Re: Scientific Proof of the success of paywalls!

    You are using the term "science" but committing a scientific or logical error, the fallacy of false equivalence.

    You are implying there is a binary choice either torrent only (which you claim will be a failure), or TV only (which they have gone for).

    You miss the obvious third option which is to allow both TV access and downloading access. Remember torrenting or downloading don't have to be illegal. Look at bittorrent.co m - a legal torrenting site, or hulu.com - a TV downloading service.

    The scientific method says nothing at all about the paywall being part of the cultural significance of the show. Indeed I would argue against that notion based on the data available.

     

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  153.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 3:06pm

    Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    at its core, piracy is just violating the private files of the content creators.

    Incorrect. It's legally impossible to violate privacy if someone publishes the content publicly with the intent for the public to consume it. For example, if you tweet that you are about to commit a crime, you may be detained based on that information, just as you have the right to remain silent after arrest but can have anything you say used against you in a court of law.

    To frame the broader context, if I make photocopies of a drawing of mine and give it to 100 people on the sidewalk, I cannot then claim a violation of privacy if some of them copy it and give those copies to yet more people. I may claim a violation of copyright, but privacy doesn't even enter into it. Neither does theft, since that was probably what you meant to say. I am still in possession of my original; no one broke into my home and took it from me.

    You're objecting to people objecting to and circumventing HBO's business model. Your hyperbole and random attempts to drag in irrelevant and even opposing arguments in order to frame this debate as a moral issue instead of an economic one are thin at best, and willfully misleading at worst.

     

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  154.  
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    PantsPockets, May 11th, 2012 @ 3:34pm

    Fact: Piracy exists. Fact: Many pirates won't pay for everything they pirate, regardless of their means or how much they like the product. Fact: Many people will continue to pirate; tough titties, bob, HBO. Fact: Should HBO make their products available via the internet like 90% of all other content providers. They'd be tapping a new revenue stream and would open themselves up to new customers. They may lose a few subscribers, but so what? They'd just be moving to their new service. Fact: HBO isn't changing right now, so they're not making money they could be. Sucks to be them.

     

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  155.  
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    jolacola, May 11th, 2012 @ 4:31pm

    Give me a Spotify style subscription service and I'm happy, I feel like the BBC license fee is money well spent (and i don't even own a TV) would happily pay more per month to stream content to my laptop.

     

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  156.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 5:06pm

    Re:

    Iron price doesn't mean murder, it means taking what's yours. Piracy could be considered paying the iron price.

     

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  157.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 6:06pm

    Re: Re: Re: Scientific Proof of the success of paywalls!

    Thank you! I heard it's good for one's health to have a nice, long laugh.

    1) Torrent-only shows have only the tiniest fraction of the budget for either production or advertising that an HBO show does. You need these things called "controlled variables" to actually run an experiment.

    2) We call these strange science-like discussions that involve people, economic systems, and business models "social sciences." You might want to look the term up sometime.

    3) The Guild.

     

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  158.  
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    wes, May 11th, 2012 @ 6:10pm

    uh.. there are mobile options

    buy a subscription. hbogo.com

    welcome to the 21st century.

     

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  159.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 6:40pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    >you're taking fairness and economic justice from the world

    No, bub (Can I call you bub?), fairness and economic justice from the world was taken when people could be sued for hundreds of thousands of dollars for allegedly downloading a song or movie, without proof or verified evidence gathering methodology.

    You can't take something that was never there to begin with. Surely even you understand that.

     

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  160.  
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    ChurchHatesTucker (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 6:57pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: ironic

    Good question. If you have access to a private tracker, they'll usually note which (films/tv) are "scene" releases. They are high quality jobs that are feature-complete. The stuff on public trackers is more random (although the scene stuff ends up there in short order.)

    There's variance by medium, too. Eg, for comics you usually follow a particular group, while for TV shows there's a race among several competing groups to be the firstest with the mostest.

     

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  161.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 7:14pm

    Re: Re: Re: Overpriced HBO

    And that doesn't include the cable/satellite TV subscription, either.

     

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  162.  
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    Alana (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 7:19pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    No legal alternative in my country.

    No streaming here. No netflix. No hulu.

    Only alternative = piracy.

    Get your facts straight.

     

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  163.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 7:21pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    WHEN YOU DOWNLOAD A CAR, YOU'RE DOWNLOADING COMMUNISM!!!11!?!

     

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  164.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 7:24pm

    Re: Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    So this gives them the right to take it? I want to pay for a BMW, but I want it at a Chevy price. What? BMW won't give it to me for that price? I'm just going to take it. I love your morals.

    Reading failure, again, bob. The proper analogy would be paying for a Ford, a Chevy, and a garage just to be able to purchase the BMW. But you aren't really buying anything, you're just renting.

     

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  165.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 7:32pm

    Re: Re: Re: denial

    > JEDIDIAH, May 11th, 2012 @ 7:30am: They need to stop living in the 70s. You should too.

    > bob, May 11th, 2012 @ 7:57am: No.

     

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  166.  
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    RadialSkid (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 7:32pm

    Re: uh.. there are mobile options

    If you were paying attention, you would note that's already been addressed. Namely, that you have to subscribe to a cable or satellite television service (with an HBO subscription) in order to subscribe to HBO Go.

    Id est, you only get to watch the shows you want on mobile if you pay about $75 a month for something you don't want.

     

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  167.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 7:43pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    "Now it's almost instant. Share once and you've shared with the world."

    And as far as I'm concerned - that's a fantastic thing, and I'm glad to be alive to see it. I just don't understand why some people can't see this as a triumph of human ingenuity. No human being need ever go without access to all the knowledge and information we've accumulated over thousands of years. How is this a bad thing, again?

     

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  168.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 7:54pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    No, he doesn't.

     

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  169.  
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    Derp, May 11th, 2012 @ 8:21pm

    Re:

    What you bunch of morons dont understand is if no one SUBSCRIBES then there will be no money to CREATE and FUND shows like Game of Thrones. It doesnt work without money. Not enough people pay for HBO then there wont be any shows. Its not like a movie where you can make it then charge 16.00 for a ticket, there are 10 or more episodes a season, they need way more money than just the price of a DVD/BluRay set to fund epic shows.

     

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  170.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 8:26pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Scientific Proof of the success of paywalls!

    You're a creationist, aren't you, bob? Still no clue how science actually works, and all the sadder for trying to mimic it here.

     

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  171.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 8:28pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    Can't count, either. 'Troll' is five letters, not four.

     

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  172.  
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    Alana (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 8:31pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    Um, they're saying it happens as a direct result of that.

    Not that it's justified, but that it's being CAUSED by it.

     

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  173.  
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    bugmenot (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 8:51pm

    I actually subscribe to HBO but I pirate Game of Thrones anyway because I prefer the freedom of watching it on my computer to having to go to the room where I have a cable box and watch it on the tv.

     

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  174.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 9:12pm

    Re: Re: Re: Scientific Proof of the success of paywalls!

    ...and in some way, Google is there in the background, pulling all the strings in a nefarious attempt to destroy the movie industry, or whatever the hell it is they're supposed to be doing whenever I can't find my meds...

     

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  175.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 9:15pm

    Re: Cutting the Cord a Fad?!

    I heard that these so-called "horseless carriages" are just a fad as well.

     

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  176.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 9:26pm

    Re: Re: STOP JUSTIFYING pirates.

    If US economic stagnation translates into other countries feeling less pressured into passing US-authored anti-consumer legislation, then I have no problem with that. In fact, please hurry up with it!

     

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  177.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 9:32pm

    You are all missing another option. If you can't beat'em join'em. I'm a network engineer for a cable company and get free cable, Internet and all premiums for free as a benefit.

    Problem solved.

     

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  178.  
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    Violentos, May 11th, 2012 @ 9:44pm

    You know nothing HBO...

     

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  179.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 9:56pm

    Re:

    Freedom is often well expressed by openly doing something which other people don't approve of.

     

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  180.  
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    Guy that watches the show, May 11th, 2012 @ 9:57pm

    I WILL PAY

    I would gladly pay to watch the show in high definition if there was an option available to pay for it but there isn't. You think I like downloading the show at 17kb/s when it first hits torrenting sites that night? You think I like stumbling across spoilers on reddit and all over the internet? No.

    I would pay something like $4.99/month to watch Game of Thrones HD streaming whenever I want. I don't have cable.

     

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  181.  
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    GB, May 11th, 2012 @ 10:47pm

    Logic

    The reason HBO doesn't alternative access to their shows is because they make their through cable as a subscription based channel. Cable companies will drop them in a heartbeat if they started allowing shows to be purchased through Itunes, Amazon, They can't afford to bite the hand that feeds them.

     

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  182.  
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    PaulT (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 11:21pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    "Just think of cable as a bulk discount."

    You seem to be missing the point. Yes, it's a discount package, but it's a discount on useless crap. There's no real reason why it's neecessary, apart from the fact that HBO have chosen that distribution system (itself something people are already abandoning). HBO is offered as a premium over and above that package. It doesn't matter whether the package is $100 or $10, whether it's a 50% or 70% discount, it's still more than people want to buy. So they don't.

    "And I'm certain that everyone around here would be complaining and asking for a bulk discount if the cable businesses forced everything to be pay-per-view. "

    Stop living in a binary world. Reality has shades of grey. "All or nothing" are not the only 2 choices.

    "That will send them a much better message than pirating."

    I agree. However, I cannot force human nature to cease, and neither can HBO. Piracy will always exist, you just have to convince more people to part with money. People are here telling you exactly how they're willing to do that, yet you mock them and tell them to waste an extra $100/month so they can watch a single show. Either that, or wait a year to be offered the chance to buy the show, long after everything's been spoiled for them in every online discussion about the show, or after its faded into irrelevance for them.

    Hopefully, you'll realise how silly this is. You might even recognise these arguments for what they are, instead of launching the usual parade of false accusations against anyone who dares question the validity of the current status quo.

     

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  183.  
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    PaulT (profile), May 11th, 2012 @ 11:28pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    Sigh... first of all, Sky is a single provider in a single country. It's also a premium satellite service, so all the arguments against cable also apply - people won't have the expense if they only want to watch one show. If you read The eejit's comment properly, you'll see that he wasn't simply saying it wasn't available overseas, just that he'd like to only pay for the shows he wants.

    You also miss another point - most countries don't have such clear-cut options. What do people in those countries where GoT has not been made available by a local supplier do? Between region blocked DVDs and no legal online streaming, people either do without or they pirate GoT. Whether you think it's moral does not change the fact that these people are being offered zero legal options.

     

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  184.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2012 @ 11:46pm

    bob, if you're such a fan of waiting until something is (never) available, and you did insist that anyone who thinks paywalls stifle innovation should go to Somalia, maybe you should be the better man and move there instead. Go ahead and do without.

     

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  185.  
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    Marcel de Jong (profile), May 12th, 2012 @ 1:06am

    Re: Re: Overpriced HBO

    I can get HBO through my Dutch cable tv provider, but I'm not paying 16~17 euro a month for just 1 show.

     

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  186.  
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    Wrinkletusk, May 12th, 2012 @ 1:49am

    Re:

    I'm in the UK, and I still download GOT. Why? Adverts.

     

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  187.  
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    gregorylent, May 12th, 2012 @ 2:48am

    tried to buy it, couldn't

    so, just waiting for the pirate version

     

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  188.  
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    JayTee (profile), May 12th, 2012 @ 3:10am

    Re: Re: Re: Overpriced HBO

    which requires a 30/month + subscription

     

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  189.  
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    JayTee (profile), May 12th, 2012 @ 3:13am

    Re:

    Yes that is fine, but it does require spending a lot of money on a sky subscription still which is precisely the same situation that everyone in america is complainging about too

     

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  190.  
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    Steve212, May 12th, 2012 @ 4:26am

    Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    "That's their business model and they're entitled to it.". Excuse me but not anymore, it's not how business works. They're supposed to be providing a good service for the customer, full stop, shouldn't need incentive. As if that wasn't enough, people have been given free access to their product so I'd say it's in their best interest to try and compete at a reasonable level and try to bring some people over. Instead they practically say: "pay for an outdated product that you can't / don't use or fuck right off". Let me get home from work, watch the programs at my own pace and in my own time and they can have my money.

     

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  191.  
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    surfer (profile), May 12th, 2012 @ 4:40am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: ironic

    Englisch ist nicht meine erste sprache =]

     

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  192.  
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    bob, May 12th, 2012 @ 8:28am

    I'm bob! I'm a complete moron who doesn't have the slightest clue about anything! Not the nature of digital technology, or disruptive innovation, or anything! I just love Big! Gotta be Big, Big, Big! I hate change! I hate consumers! I love money and profits! And I wish I could be a Ferengi, because that's who I am in spirit if not in body! Like all maximalists, I know all the Rules of Acquisition by heart, if not by word, because I live them every day! I am a maximalist! Reason, sanity, and decency are not nor will they ever be part of my character! Whee! Big Copyright! Big Boneheads! Big Backwards-Thinkers! That's what we maximalists are! WAHAHAHAHAHAHA!

     

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  193.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 12th, 2012 @ 8:35am

    @53

    just wanted to secretly tell you that those movies and tv rips that have the credits in...well they come from the copyright holder....and are then given to a pirate to scene up and then some in p2p ....YUP folks prolly half the scene now is hollywood themselves.....
    haha
    especially ANYTHING HD/BLURAY

     

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  194.  
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    Cthulku, May 12th, 2012 @ 9:00am

    Re: Re: Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    When I buy a box of cookies, it is usually not filled with 99% of indedible trash and one tasty cookie. If I'm paying for cookies, I want all of them to be tasty, thank you very much.

    The road model doesn't really hold up either, since it's a government service that everybody HAS to pay for. Period. Just to remind you, we're talking about a luxury service provider that is using an antiquated distribution model and would rather try to legislate stasis than adapt. Kind of (but not exactly) like the movie studios that didn't adopt sound.

    Going back to your car analogy, it's not a matter of wanting to pay a Chev price for a BMW; it's a matter of having to also buy a Chev, Ford, Smart, VW, Honda, Nissan, Mercedes and Audi to be able to get the BMW. Hence why physical product analogies don't work well with describing electronic media distribution/sales models.

    Maga-what? Who on earth still reads physical magazines? It's been easily 15-20 years since I've read a magazine, much less had a subscription. I was 13 when I figured out that they were little more than targeted marketing systems, with only just barely enough content to make it so that gullible people would pay for them. This is an honest question to the thread at large: does anyone actually think that print magazines are at all relevant?

    And, please pardon the poor thread etiquette, to comment on your post in #109: I never published any of those. They are private documents and are not intended for public view. HBO's reason for existing is to publish media. Again, perhaps you might want to re-think your analogies. I have no interest in an HBO exec's diaries or tax forms.

     

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  195.  
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    Mutterwolf, May 12th, 2012 @ 10:43am

    HBO, GOT and the future

    HBO and all the media companies, and many retail and other businesses all face a radical model change in the near future. Part of this is a race to the bottom in pricing. Your local vet in the USA or Canada can't afford to price compete on pet medications with Target, Wal-Mart or 1800Petmeds, so they will lose the pharmacy portion of their business unless they find new innovative solutions. The entertainment media are used to having a lock hold based on scarcity, but their products increase in value with wider distribution. They are all trying to narrow access and demand higher price. They need to embrace easier access and lower price. Share revenue on hundreds of distributions and small parts of many pies - not just a lion's share of one pie. They talk piracy - but mostly they are talking System D blackmarket and they don't get the digital distribution at all. We want our media available on our terms, not theirs.

     

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  196.  
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    Robert King, May 12th, 2012 @ 10:56am

    Miss the mark

    What is missing from this article is that the cable networks won't let the premium channels do what your asking for.

    Do you think Comcast or Verizon could survive pay channels selling directly to the customer? And would HBO/SHO continue to survive without the marketing and security cable providers give to their network?

     

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  197.  
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    Robert King, May 12th, 2012 @ 10:57am

    Miss the mark

    What is missing from this article is that the cable networks won't let the premium channels do what your asking for.

    Do you think Comcast or Verizon could survive pay channels selling directly to the customer? And would HBO/SHO continue to survive without the marketing and security cable providers give to their network?

     

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  198.  
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    That One Guy (profile), May 12th, 2012 @ 8:37pm

    Re:

    You are aware that as far as HBO is concerned, the fact that you got it used is basically as bad as if you'd pirated it in the first place, yes?

    Likewise, ripping it would be considered just as bad(and illegal to boot, assuming the discs have any form of DRM on them) as if you'd pirated it as well, so you may think you're playing by the rules here, but as far as HBO and those like them are concerned, you're just another dirty pirate.

     

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  199.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 13th, 2012 @ 7:28am

    I have HBO, yet I download Got.
    The air times and rerun times of GoT in my area make it impossible for me to watch due to graduate school and work schedule.

    And their stupid stream service is US only so I can't pay for their on-demand service (HBO Go) even if I wanted to pay twice!

     

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  200.  
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    Vikarti Anatra, May 14th, 2012 @ 9:04am

    Re: Legitimate versions? Try getting a cable subscription!

    One little problem.
    There isn't HBO here in my city at all(hint:I'm not in USA,and btw, my mother prefer to see GOT with voice dub in language she COULD understood(and on Wendsdays such version is usually becomes available)
    So which legal options I have?

     

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  201.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 14th, 2012 @ 12:48pm

    Re: Re: $12.95/MONTH ?

    No, actually, I have basic cable and can add HBO. This is Time-Warner cable in New York.

     

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  202.  
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    brian, Sep 13th, 2012 @ 8:25pm

    HBO keeps up their pointless efforts

    HBO have been poisoning torrents for a long time, at least five years. To this day they are still at it. But I cannot understand why they think there is a point. The Bittorrent world figured out as soon as it started how to work around this problem with block lists. Today I think the popular clients have been designed to efficiently block sources of contaminated data without any user intervention. When I see an apparently poisoned HBO torrent with way too many seeders, there's not the same string of comments complaining about download speed, and I have no speed problems with a current version of uTorrent.
    Also, I think they are still sending out threatening letters. Today they are only catching new users or perhaps the very lazy. Anyone who wants to use bittorrent without the risk of this happening should just buy VPN service from one of the many providers. For about $6/mo on an annual plan, there is no way for some HBO corporate hacker to find your IP address and start bothering you.
    I wonder what they are accomplishing by continuing these efforts to slow torrents and menace downloaders. I am inclined to think they are being sold a bill of goods by the companies that provide these services, and that they are being downloaded just as much as companies that don't do these ineffectual measures.

     

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