‘The Walking Dead’ Season 5 Premiere Piracy Hits All-Time High

Walking Dead Piracy Hits All Time

Record TV ratings for the fifth season premiere of “The Walking Dead” doesn’t mean the AMC drama can’t reach record piracy levels, too.

The episode was downloaded by approximately 1.27 million unique IP addresses worldwide in the first 24 hours since its U.S. TV debut Sunday, according to piracy tracking firm Excipio.

That’s more than four times than what the two previous season premieres in 2013 (178k) and 2012 (296k) achieved. That’s a sobering comparison considering “Walking” is distributed in over 125 markets around the world within 24 hours of its U.S. launch by Fox International Channels specifically to thwart piracy.

While the peer-to-peer copyright infringement was primarily here in the U.S. according to Excipio, Australia, United Kingdom, Brazil and Canada rounded out the top five of the worst offenders around the globe.

Massive as the series’ piracy growth is, “Walking” is still a close second to U.S. TV’s reigning piracy king: “Game of Thrones.” Its fourth season premiere and finale registered 1.86 million and 1.46 million downloaders in the first 24 hours earlier this year.

But zombies are a featured attraction among infringers. Last month, the Syfy series “Z Nation” came out of nowhere to premiere to over 300,000 IP addresses.


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  1. George Costanza says:

    Just cause of this I’m gonna download the show

  2. kala says:

    The Walking Dead has more viewers with every episode, breaking records with every new season, this means those who can afford to watch it on cable are and the poor are using the internet. Either way they are making a killing. Their merchandise is still bought and paid for by both cable and internet viewing fans alike.

  3. johnq says:

    So what am I supposed to do? Not watch something because I can’t afford it? Only the rich get to watch it? Go eat sand, I will do whatever the hell I want whenever the hell I want.

  4. Mac says:

    Option A) sign up for a cable, pay an outrageous monthly fee for the 3 shows I watch, as well as a DVR since I have a job. Then, after paying all that I still have to be bombarded by advertising.

    Option B) Download. I’ll buy the DVDs when it releases, so it’s not like AMC isn’t getting paid for the show.

    The solution for AMC would be to just offer other options to view the show. They can stream online and still have ads for starters.

  5. jedi77 says:

    Again with the “Piracy”.
    Look, I subscribe to Netflix, I subscribe to HBO Nordic, and I subscribe to any number of channels that show The Walking Dead.
    But… I don’t intend to wait a year for it to show up on Netflix and HBO.
    And I don’t record stuff off the TV.
    So when it comes time for me to binge the latest season of Walking Dead, I download.
    And for the love of sweet Christ, that is not piracy! I paid my dues, my fees and my subscriptions. It’s just that the easiest way for me to access what I want when I want it, is downloading. It’s fast, efficient, and the product is flexible.

  6. I’m so tired of the industry calling the sharing of free television programs “piracy”. No money exchanges hands and absolutely no money is lost to the producers of the program when people download and share the program. Real piracy is when someone takes an entertainment product (like a movie or CD or a DVD set) then reproduces it to look like the original, and then sells it for profit. If copying and sharing a free TV program is piracy then VCRs, cassette players, MP3 players and DVD burners should all be outlawed. Outside of “the industry” no rational human being sees sharing a TV show as piracy, and never will, even with the outlandish litigiousness of certain elements of “the industry.”

  7. Vidia says:

    That’s because TWD is the world’s most popular series currently on-air. The majority of those downloading unlikely live in the U.S., where it’s common people watch TWD as it airs and also DVR it.

  8. Camps95 says:

    Well maybe if paid tv wasn’t so expensive people would legally watch it. I have paid tv however it’s so not worth it when I just want to watch a few shows. I don’t care for the all the sports, the kids channels etc so when there isn’t an option to just subscribe to channels you want to subscribe to because the companies want more money, people are going to download…….

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