HBO targeting users who downloaded GOT leak episodes

edited April 2015 in Game of Thrones
Hey guys,

Just a head up if you are obtaining GOT (this also applies for any copyrighted material via torrent) to possibly look into another way to obtain your content or look into VPNs via anon bitcoin payment etc. 

HBO has sent out thousands of copyright infringement notices to users who connected to the torrent and transferred data, this was recorded by HBOs anti-piracy partner IP-Echelon who logged user IP addresses.


More details:


  • TaraC73TaraC73 Manchester NH
  • ksa1001ksa1001 Plano, TX
    No one should be using Torrents as they aren't private.

    Usenet FTW
  • Very true @ksa1001

    Nice a fellow usenetter!, what are your favoured indexers?
  • ksa1001ksa1001 Plano, TX
    @phil_neko usenet-crawler & NZBgeek are my main go to sites.
  • Nice one nzbgeek is very good
  • Wouldnt torrents on private sites be private? Are you referring to the disaster known as piratebay?
  • @Jovial_Falcon Yeah they are, in general. IPT is a 'private' tracker but isn't really that private because it's a huge site and, in the case here, idiots re-shared a private tracker to (a) public site(s), making it no longer private. Anyone concerned about privacy that wants to use torrents should use a private tracker and use a VPN.
  • A_Ron_HubbardA_Ron_Hubbard Cincinnati, OH
    Well, much like Dany, they probably felt like they had to do something, so this is what they did.  hissssssssssssss

    Haha, I really feel for the reviewer who's screener copy got uploaded to the internet, assuming HBO is smart enough to watermark their copies.  I bet a whole lot of legal hell came their way.  

    [Deleted User]
  • AndrewAndrew New York
    They're also targeting other methods of "piracy."

    They've recently told a bar they can't air episodes live.

  • @andrew that is pretty sad right there. Thats going a lil too far
  • pavlovsbellpavlovsbell Brooklyn, NY
    @A_Ron_Hubbard I heard (on a critic's podcast) that the watermark was scrubbed.  Critics are fearful that HBO may discontinue screeners; moreover, it is suspected that the leak did not originate from a reviewer (because why would they -- it's not in their interest to do so), but instead from a secondary source (e.g., dubbing / subtitling houses). 

    As for Videology, they should have known better, as screening movies and television is their business model.  Any business owner should know to investigate if they need to procure a license to publicly perform copyright-protected material.  The defense of, "Well, everyone else is breaking the law, so why can't I?" is not a defense at all.

    I suppose I shouldn't be surprised by the backlash against HBO for merely doing what they are legally obligated to do.  In order to maintain a copyright, the copyright owner must enforce that right.  Same thing with trademarks, if you want to keep your trademark protection, you have to enforce it, and if you do not enforce it, it can weaken a claim that you choose to bring later.

    I am, however, surprised by the sense of entitlement.  Many people seem to feel entitled to what they want, when they want it, how they want it, and how much they want to pay (or not pay) for it, to hell with the people whose rights they are violating.  
  • ksa1001ksa1001 Plano, TX
    edited April 2015
    It's just the way of the world these days. Everything is instant, and with services like Spotify, people don't feel they have to pay for about any form of entertainment.

    The watermark was scrubbed btw (bottom left hand corner)
  • DeeDee Adelaide
    I will freely admit to having that "sense of entitlement", because as I said earlier - we just don't have the easy, cheap, legal access to the good stuff like the U.S. has. I'm happy to pay a reasonable fee for something, but if that's not available to me, then damn straight I feel entitled to pirate it.
  • I work for a Big 10 school and we have seen a number of warnings to students busted downloading. They appear to be targeting episode 4 in the leaked run. Personally, a friend got them and we marathoned the four last Monday night. Low resolution looked ok on his 70" TV
  • HatorianHatorian Dagobah
    edited April 2015
    They need to do something. Look what happened when the British and French just let Hitler invade Poland. Many historians believe that Hitler could have easily been stopped in 1939-40 if the Allies put a massive military foot down on Germany. However, they stood idle and Hitler had his way. Same concept today. HBO needs to have some sort of response so that people just assume they will let people get away with DLing all their IP/content. :)
  • ArctorArctor The Netherlands
    edited April 2015
    A little offhand tip for HBO: Screeners always leak. During award seasons every movie is released the moment their screener is released. Whoever you're sending them out to you can't trust them and those watermarks get scrubbed out. I'm not trying to justify it or tell you how to run your business but maybe you shouldn't send out 4 full episodes ahead of the air-date if you don't want this to happen next time.
  • Do they always leak? HBO has always sent out multiple episodes and I don't remember this happening before.
  • ArctorArctor The Netherlands
    @SlytherinSister Maybe a new precedent for TV? For movies at least it seems to be a rule rather than an exception.
  • AndrewAndrew New York
    Dee said:

    I will freely admit to having that "sense of entitlement", because as I said earlier - we just don't have the easy, cheap, legal access to the good stuff like the U.S. has. I'm happy to pay a reasonable fee for something, but if that's not available to me, then damn straight I feel entitled to pirate it.

    I hear ya. I've been tempted a few times to try to illegally procure the Hamm episode of Black Mirror. I'm just to lazy to figure out how to do it.
  • chriskchrisk Indianapolis
    A man has had occasion to torrent things over the years, and the only notices have come from House HBO. They have done this through many, many winters, as far back as The Sopranos. The trick to escaping the King's justice, unfortunately, is to download and not to seed. A man is perhaps less honorable for doing so, but a man keeps his internet. 
  • MmmBopMmmBop United Kingdom
    A girl simply streams everything.
  • ksa1001ksa1001 Plano, TX
    A man should usenet, a man would be in the clear.
  • As someone who happily gives HBO $15 / month for HBO Now, I wouldn't feel bad at all for downloading the episodes early and, as long as I continue to pay through the official run of those episodes, it shouldn't be illegal.  It probably is, strictly speaking, but it shouldn't be.

    I wish HBO would sponsor our podcasts because HBO Now is seriously the best $15 I spend in a month.  It's cheaper than subscribing to HBO through a cable provider and they make the best content on TV, period.
  • davidjacobsdavidjacobs Portland, OR
    If I didn't have a family with three kids, I would absolutely cord cut. Dish Network charges $19 for HBO, so $15 is actually not to bad. but I know a lot of people who add HBO for GOT and then cancel. A lot of churn would be reduced if they went full a la carte. Waiting for the John Oliver routine about, hey, why isn't anyone making a fuss about bittorrenting ME?!
  • I heard it was just a 'hey please stop doing this' type of email?
  • edited April 2015

    Full resolution Here
  • chriskchrisk Indianapolis
    That infographic is very stuffed.
  • I heard it was just a 'hey please stop doing this' type of email?
    Yeah it was, there were no legal ramifications, just a "I see what you did there" from HBO to intimidate them a bit from downloading in the future. 

    [Deleted User]
  • aberry89aberry89 California
    edited April 2015
    It is a "i see what you did there" email, but people have been fined thousands of dollars for breaking copyright infringement laws. And it doesn't matter if you download or upload. There is no rhyme or reason to who they go after, but I do know that the larger or higher quality files you download will ping on their radars more often. It doesn't happen a lot, but I have heard stories of people getting notices in the mail that they have to pay very large amounts of money  for things downloaded years and years ago. I use to download a whole bunch of stuff all the time, but I have cut down to basically nothing now. HBONow has been a huge help with that, since you can find most basic cable shows  now on Hulu, etc. 

    Also, don't download Marvel stuff, you will DEF be getting a notice if you do...they must have good tech people, they can afford them. 

  • Im pretty sure there is a "3 strike" rule in place. Maybe its just NH but I really dont think the 1st time you get caught that you get fined. It may even be a 4 or 5 strike "rule". They have made laws to help people not get huge fines for the first time getting caught
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