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Games of Thrones breaks piracy records, but sees it as a compliment

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Game of Thrones has ranked as the most illegally downloaded TV series for 2012, but the programming president of HBO merely sees this as a “compliment”.

The third season of Game of Thrones launched last night in the UK on Sky Atlantic and should top Sky’s viewing charts for several weeks to come, but it is its position at the top of the piracy chart that has the series causing a stir.

“I probably shouldn’t be saying this, but it is compliment of sorts,” said HBO programming president, Michael Lombardo. “The demand is there. And it certainly didn’t negatively impact the DVD sales. [Piracy is] something that comes along with having a wildly successful show on a subscription network.”

One estimate suggests that the season finale of Game of Throne Season 2 was downloaded illegally over 4.3 million times globally during 2012, but despite widespread piracy, Game of Thrones is still HBO’s top-earning programme.

“If you look at aggregate of international and DVD sales – which are the two revenue streams we look at since we’re not selling it domestically on another platform – yes, absolutely, in terms of shows we have on now.”

However, Lombardo’s biggest worry about the illegal copies of the series available is about quality. The Games of Thrones team takes great pride in the efforts made to make the TV series look fantastic, so are worried illegal copies could be showing the series in a bad light.

“One of my worries is about the copies [downloaders are] seeing. The production values of this show are so incredible. So I’m hoping that in the purloined different generations of cuts that the show is holding up.”

Game of Thrones Season 3 is currently showing on Sky Atlantic HD at 9pm on a Monday evening. Sky is also offering the popular TV series live or streamed via its Sky Go service, or users can opt to download the series for offline viewing using Sky Go Extra. Game of Thrones Season 1 and 2 are also available through the Sky on Demand library.

What did you think of the Game of Throne Season 3 premiere last night? Are you surprised to hear Game of Thrones is the top TV series to be watched illegally? Drop us a line via the TrustedReviews Facebook and Twitter pages or the comments below.

Via: Entertainment Weekly

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