Top 10 most pirated US TV shows unveiled
10.08 Europe/London, December 20, 2011 By Robert Briel

With 3,620,000 downloads per single episode, Dexter has the honour of becoming the most pirated TV-show of the year, according to TorrentFreak’s annual review of the most-pirated entertainment titles.

Although the number of illegal downloads is still sizeable, the trend of pirate TV series seems to be levelling off. Especially in the US, the percentage of TV downloaders has steadily declined in recent years, according to TorrentFreak.

“This is in part thanks to alternative viewing options such as Hulu and Netflix. In other regions, such as Australia and Europe, the demand for US TV-shows remains strong,” notes TorrentFreak.

“Outside the US fans sometimes have to wait endlessly before their favourite show airs on TV in their own country. Many of them are simply not that patient or willing to torture themselves, and turn to BitTorrent in desperation.”

This trend suggests that availability is the key when combating piracy. This looks like being confirmed by recent events. When the US network Fox decided to delay the airing of new episodes on Hulu in August, many former Hulu users turned to BitTorrent where the number of US downloads more than doubled.

TorrentFreak concludes: “In common with many branches of the entertainment industry, the challenge for TV companies is to come up with a business model that allows users to consume what they want at any given time, without losing revenue in the process. When that puzzle is solved worldwide the number of unauthorised downloads will be pretty much insignificant.”

The full Top 10 pirated TV shows is:
1) Dexter – 3,620,000 downloads - 2,190,000 estimated US viewers
2) Game of Thrones - 3,400,000 (3,040,000)
3) The Big Bang Theory – 3,090,000 (15,980,000)
4) House – 2,760,000 (9,780,000)
5) How I Met Your Mother - 2,410,000 (12,220,000)
6) Glee – 2,200,000 (9,210,000)
7) The Walking Dead – 2,060,000 (7,260,000)
8) Terra Nova – 1,910,000 (9,220,000)
9) True Blood – 1,850,000 (5,530,000)
10) Breaking Bad -1,730,000 (2,580,000)