View Finder: The world still loves torrenting Game of Thrones

Nick Broughall 30 December 2016

game of thrones piracy

In news that even a returning Sherlock wouldn't find surprising, the pirates still love HBO shows.

Much like Jon Snow, channel bittorrent just refuses to die. Despite the relative ease of accessing shows like Game of Thrones through legitimate streaming platforms like Foxtel Play (now known as Foxtel Now), recent numbers from TorrentFreak suggest that the Westeros soap opera still managed to retain the number one position for most torrented show in 2016.

At its peak, the program managed to have 350,000 people simultaneously downloading the finale just after it became available.

While the numbers aren't broken down for Australians specifically, we do know from previous years that Aussies historically love downloading the show via the file sharing platform. Also worth noting is that it's highly unlikely that the recent court decision to make ISPs block sites like the Pirate Bay will make any difference whatsoever to those numbers.

It's also interesting that the sheer number of people downloading the shows on bittorrent didn't top previous years, which suggests that the availability via different streaming services is impacting the need for people to torrent, or that the show's demand is waning.

Of course, the fact that new HBO show Westworld skyrocketed to position 3 in the most torrented list for 2016 means that HBO's global streaming approach could possibly do with a bit more work.

Here's the full list of shows, according to TorrentFreak's data:

Title2016 position2015 positionAvailable on
Game of Thrones11Foxtel Now
The Walking Dead22Foxtel Now
Westworld3(new)Foxtel Now
The Flash45Stan
Arrow54Netflix
The Big Bang Theory63Presto
Vikings77Netflix
Lucifer8(new)iTunes
Suits910Netflix
The Grand Tour10(new)Amazon Prime Video

Nappy New Year

It's New Year's Eve tomorrow, and if you don't feel like braving the monster crowds or yet another abysmal year of live event coverage from free-to-air TV, Netflix has got you (or more precisely, your kids) covered.

The streaming giant has delivered a handful of New Year's Eve countdown programs from some of its more popular kids programming.

If your children enjoy All Hail King Julien, Skylanders Academy, Trollhunters, Puffin Rock, Beat Bugs, Luna and Petunia, Word Party or Project MC2, then you can navigate your Netflix browser to special New Year's Eve countdown episodes of these shows. They only last somewhere between 1 and 4 minutes each, and can give your kids the joy of a New Year's countdown at any time you want them to go to bed.

If you're feeling particularly masochistic, there are also Fuller House and Chasing Cameron versions to endure as well.

Get streaming this week

Dr. Strange is back, and this time, he's even more neurotic than ever before. Wait, I may be mixing up my Cumberbatches. In any case, the first week of January sees the return (final return?) of the BBC's excellent Sherlock, starring Cumberbatch and Bilbo himself, Martin Freeman.

Stan is offering the first episode day and date as the UK, and the show really is quite great, so if you haven't seen it yet, grab yourself a Stan account and binge all the previous episodes before this season airs.


Each week, View Finder rounds up the latest news in streaming TV and movies for Australians.

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