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Top 10 Illegal UK Broadband File Sharing Piracy TV and Film Downloads

Posted: 28th Aug, 2009 By: MarkJ
Rights collector PRS for Music has released the results of a new study into illegal file sharing, which reveals that the UK TV industry is facing dramatic digital disruption and huge piracy problems. The study, which was presented at the Edinburgh Television Festival, claims that piracy has caused music sales to drop to 1994 levels and is spreading rampantly to TV and Film.
Key findings reveal that:

• Popular UK show Top Gear is consistently one of the most illegally swapped shows, especially in the US.
• Charging for television programmes that had been free leads to a significant spike in illegal downloads.
• Millions of television viewers now access free, unauthorised versions of favourite shows and this is beginning to replace standard viewing hours.
• Top illegal TV swaps included Desperate Housewives, 24 and Prison Break whilst top films included Slumdog Millionaire and Twilight.
Will Page, Chief Economist PRS for Music said:

“The music industry was the first to fully feel the force of digital disruption. It is important for the film and television industries to understand and learn from the experience of the music business and to look not just at possible lost value, but the opportunities that digital distribution can bring.”

Eric Garland Chief Executive of Big Champagne commented:

“Millions of television viewers now access free, unauthorised versions of favourite shows at least some of the time. This is a socially acceptable form of casual piracy - and it is replacing viewing hours."

The results also include a list of the top ten illegal TV and Film downloads, which makes for an interesting read. It should be noted that similar stats can easily be gained by visiting some of the more popular P2P (BitTorrent) tracker sites.
Most Popular Film Torrents
Watchmen; 16,906,452
The Curious Case of Benjamin Button; 13,133,137
Yes Man; 13,038,364
Twilight; 11,632,645
Fast and Furious; 10,613,668
Gran Torino; 9,880,700
Marley and Me; 9,099,219
Slumdog Millionaire; 8,840,884
Bolt; 8,690,633
Australia; 8,628,012


Most Popular TV Torrents
Heroes; 54,562,012
Lost; 51,151,396
24; 34,119,093
Prison Break; 29,283,591
House; 26,277,954
Fringe; 21,434,755
Desperate Housewives; 21,378,412
Grey's Anatomy; 19,916,775
Gossip Girl; 19,706,870
Smallville; 19,598,999
It's not clearly stated in the press release but we suspect that the download numbers contain both UK and USA statistics. After all, no sensible British person would actually download that horrible movie 'Australia' (we still have nightmares about the lack of acting, plot and interesting dialogue + annoying kid) and so the 8.6m must surely be from the USA :tongue: .

We're also fairly sure that there aren't 54m+ UK broadband users to download 'Heroes' with in the first place; the actual broadband subscriber figure is closer to 18m.
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