×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

‘House of Cards’ Season 3 Pirated, With China Top Country for Downloaders

House of Cards” is a global franchise — and the political drama is popular in many countries where Netflix isn’t yet available, prompting a surge in piracy downloads for the just-released season three.

Within the first 24 hours after season three hit torrent services, there were 681,889 unique downloaders worldwide, according to piracy-tracking firm Excipio. That’s more than twice as many as for “House of Cards” season two, which had 320,927 downloaders within 24 hours of being pirated back in February 2014.

For five of the top 10 countries for “House of Cards” season 3 pirates — China, India, Australia, Poland and Greece — Netflix service is currently not available (although the company plans to launch in Oz later this month).

The top 10 territories for “House of Cards” season 3 piracy were China (60,538), followed by the U.S. (50,008), India (47,106), Australia (40,557), Poland (37,552), the U.K. (32,703), Canada (27,584), France (27,151), Greece (20,551) and the Netherlands (20,402).

In addition to illicitly downloading pirated copies of shows, millions of consumers in areas where Netflix is not available use virtual private network services to access the streaming service — including more than 20 million Chinese, according to research firm GlobalWebIndex.

Netflix has set an aggressive rollout plan to expand internationally, pegging a footprint of 200 countries by 2017. As for when it might enter China, Netflix has said is still exploring “modest” options and faces a range of unique challenges. For one thing, in China Netflix needs to get a license to offer service there’s no guarantee it will be able to secure one from the government.

Netflix launched the 13-episode “HoC” season three on Friday, Feb. 27, at 12:01 a.m. PT, in most of its territories. The show stars Kevin Spacey as ruthless politician Frank Underwood and Robin Wright as his scheming wife, Claire Underwood.

It’s worth noting that in non-Netflix territories, producers have licensed “House of Cards” for TV or online distribution, including Australia and China. As such, the piracy activity stands to diminish the commercial value of those rights. “House of Cards” is produced by Trigger Street Prods. in association with Media Rights Capital, and distributed internationally by Sony Pictures Television.

More Digital

  • hdhomerun roku app

    HDHomerun App Brings Live TV to Roku Devices

    Roku users are getting another way to watch live television with the help of their favorite streaming devices: Silicondust, maker of the HDHomerun TV tuners, has released a beta version of its HDHomerun app for Roku TVs and streaming devices. “We need to start out by saying this is very much a beta product,” the [...]

  • Vox Media

    Vox Media Staff Ratifies First Union Contract, Negotiated by Writers Guild

    Staffers at Vox Media, which includes Curbed, Eater, Polygon, Recode, SB Nation, The Verge and Vox.com, have ratified their first collective bargaining agreement with more than 90% in support. The staffers are represented by the Writers Guild of America East. Vox Media’s 350-member unit began bargaining their first contract in April 2018. The campaign to [...]

  • Joslyn Davis, Lily-Marston - Shared Media

    Clevver’s Joslyn Davis, Lily Marston Launch Their Own YouTube Media Venture (EXCLUSIVE)

    Here’s the latest chapter in the saga of Clevver, the entertainment/lifestyle YouTube network marooned by the shuttering of former parent Defy Media and subsequently snapped up by Hearst Magazines. Two of the principal creatives behind Clevver — Joslyn Davis and Lily Marston — together with Clevver Media co-founder Jorge Maldonado have launched Shared Media, their [...]

  • Money-Diaries-Refinery29

    Refinery29 to Produce Interactive Series Funded by Eko (EXCLUSIVE)

    Refinery29 has been bitten by the “Bandersnatch” bug. The millennial-female-focused digital media and entertainment company inked a pact with Eko, an interactive-video platform developer whose backers include Walmart, to produce several “choose-your-own-adventure”-style series based on Refinery29 content properties. The companies have started development on their first project: an interactive scripted adaptation of Refinery29’s popular “Money [...]

  • Dan Howell

    YouTube Star Dan Howell Comes Out as Gay: 'It Gets So Much Better'

    It’s Pride Month, and popular YouTube vlogger Dan Howell had a message for fans that he’d been working on for a year: “Basically, I’m Gay,” he shared in a video Thursday. In the 45-minute video, Howell discussed coming to terms with his sexual orientation and his thoughts on labels that people use to define themselves [...]

  • Netflix Expands Korean Content Commitment

    Netflix Expands Korean Content Commitment as Industry Deepens

    Global streaming giant, Netflix is expanding its involvement in the Korean film and TV industries by greenlighting several new shows and renewing others. “When we started three years ago, we had a high degree of confidence that Korean drama would work well in Asia, but we had no internal metrics of our own,” Korean content [...]

  • Instagram Logo

    Instagram Outage: Facebook’s Photo Sharing Service Went Down For Multiple Hours

    Instagram faced another major outage Thursday afternoon, with users from around the world reporting that they weren’t able to access Facebook’s photo sharing service via its app and website. An Instagram spokesperson told Variety around 5pm PT that the issue had been resolved: “Earlier today, a technical issue caused some people to have trouble accessing [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content