HBO’s Game of Thrones has not only set viewing records for HBO (see "Geek Shows Rule"), the superbly-produced adaptation of George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Fire and Ice fantasy saga is also the most pirated TV show in the world according to TorrentFreak.
More than 11 million people watch each episode of the fantasy saga on HBO, but according to Torrent Freak, over 4 million people also illegally download each episode of Game of Thrones. Part of the reason is that HBO inexplicably delays the broadcast of the show in Australia for a week, but the show is also heavily pirated here in the U.S. by those who don’t want to pay for the premium HBO service.
Surprisingly The Big Bang Theory, which is available on a free over-the-air network and is shown on multiple outlets because of syndication, is the third most frequently pirated series with 2.75 million illegal downloads per episode, something that speaks to the tech-savvy nature of the show’s geek audience.