Long gone are the days when HBO seemingly paid little mind to piracy. Following the leak of the first four episodes of season 5 of Game of Thrones, TorrentFreak is reporting that HBO is now dead serious about thwarting individuals from illegally downloading the world’s most pirated show.
Specifically, HBO is now putting individual pirates on notice. HBO has already issued “thousands of warnings to Internet subscribers whose connections were used to share leaked Game of Thrones episodes.” The warning messages, naturally, are being relayed through each individual user’s ISP.
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What’s more, HBO has provided ISPs with a handy reminder on how to deal with users found to be downloading or uploading unauthorized HBO content.
The reminder, which is actually more along the lines of a directive, reads in part:
1. Contact the subscriber who has engaged in the conduct described above and take steps to prevent the subscriber from further downloading or uploading HBO content without authorization.
2. Take appropriate action against the account holder under your Abuse Policy/Terms of Service Agreement.
It’s important to note that HBO doesn’t know (nor does it appear that they are interested in learning) the individual identities of suspected pirates, which is to say that individual pirates don’t have to fear any pending legal action. Still, HBO is seemingly hoping that if they put a little bit of fear into the hearts of BitTorrent users, piracy rates might go down accordingly.
News of HBO going after individual pirates is simply the latest in a series of actions HBO has undertaken in order to reign in Game of Thrones piracy. Just last week, for instance, HBO went after Periscope users who were found to be live streaming the show. Early on Monday, we reported that HBO was also clamping down on bars that hold public viewings of each new episode.