HBO's popular series Game of Thrones is on top once again. For the second year in a row, the show's Season 3 finale topped the list of the most pirated TV shows of 2013.
According to TV Line, TorrentFreak reported a staggering 5.9 million downloads of the show. The same finale episode hit 6.2 million total viewers the night of its broadcast on HBO on 2 June 2013.
After the show topped 2012's most-pirated list, the executives seemed to take the "honour" in their stride, reports CBS News.
HBO programming president Michael Lombardo told Entertainment Weekly earlier this year that it is "a compliment of sorts," while Jeff Bewkes, CEO of Time Warner (which owns HBO), said that online piracy leads to more paid subscriptions and is "better than an Emmy".
Other shows that made the list are:
2. Breaking Bad (4.2 million)
3. The Walking Dead (3.6 million)
4. The Big Bang Theory (3.4 million)
5. Dexter (3.1 million)
6. How I Met Your Mother (3 million)
7. Suits (2.6 million)
8. Homeland (2.4 million)
9. Vikings (2.3 million)
10. Arrow (2.2 million)
The Big Bang Theory and How I Met Your Mother are the only comedy shows to feature in the list. While the former is enjoying a good stable run in its latest season, HIMYM is half way into its final season where the series' big secret regarding the "mother" will finally be revealed.
While the studio bosses behind Game of Thrones are thrilled with this development, other entertainment professionals do not share the same level of excitement over the "supposed benefits" of video piracy, states the CBS report.
Gale Anne Hurd, executive producer of The Walking Dead, told Variety: "There's a mistaken belief by many of my peers that piracy is somehow good, that viewers will develop a habit to pay for it."