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United Kingdom Leads the World in TV Downloads

CowboyNeal posted more than 9 years ago | from the stolen-telly dept.

Television 1077

SumDog writes "The UK is known for many things, great food, a wonderful climate and beautiful women. However, according to a story on the Guardian, a new study puts the UK ahead in one more category: it leads the world in TV piracy, accounting for 38.4% of the world's TV downloads, with Australia coming in second at 15.6% and the US in third at a pitiful 7.3%"

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1077 comments

known for beautiful women?? (-1, Troll)

Cryptnotic (154382) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709575)

Is it? I thought English girls were supposed to be all slightly overweight with sickly white skin.

Wait a minute... (0)

Cryptnotic (154382) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709591)

Great food and wonderful climate? Obviously this guy has never been to Britain and is basing his observations on movies that are always shot in good weather, actors who have one in a million looks, and fish 'n chips.

Re:Wait a minute... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11709605)

He's taking the piss.

You know, the stuff you drink warm (you freaks).

Re:Wait a minute... (0, Offtopic)

Gumph (706694) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709614)

you are obvisouly forgetting this little 'delicacy'

Recipe for Black Pudding

1lt (1¾ pints) Blood (Pig, Lamb or Goose)
340g (12oz) Shredded Suet
300ml (½ pint) Milk
50g (2oz) Oatmeal
3 Medium Onions, chopped
1 tbsp Salt
½ tsp Mixed Herbs
½ tsp Cayenne Pepper
Pinch Nutmeg
Pre-heat oven to 160C: 300F: Gas 2.
Mix all of the ingredients together thoroughly, making sure that the seasonings are evenly distributed.
Next fill the large sausage cases, see: Sausage Making Basics for advice on doing so.
Place into an ovenproof dish with a cover, standing in a larger dish half filled with water.
Bake for 1½ hours. Allow to cool.

hmmmmmmm, pig's blood!

Re:known for beautiful women?? (2, Insightful)

CdBee (742846) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709612)

No, American girls are ridiculously underwight with grotesquely fake-looking skin. No, actually, that's not true either

"beautiful" american girls are as above. the majority are McDonalds-stuffed rhinos

Or shall we just stop with the stereotypes?

Re:known for beautiful women?? (1)

mboverload (657893) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709682)

There is a cliché saying that must be said here, but applies.

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

If you were brought up in some culture (heaven forbid) that says fat, bitchy white women are as hot as hell, your going to be turned on by fat, bitchy white women. Your sense of beauty only applies to you and people brought up in your culture. Even close friends differ on if a girl is hot or not.

Take for example Grant Snow on Fox's Point Pleasant (Image:http://www.elisabeth-harnois.net/images/alb ums/events/fox2005winterparty/004.jpg [elisabeth-harnois.net] ). I think she is hot (I am a teenager, so don't go all yelling pervert on me) but my best friend says she looks freaky. Eye of the beholder my friend.

Re:known for beautiful women?? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11709613)

shuddup unless you want a knuckle sandwich like the girls over here have had.

Re:known for beautiful women?? (1, Funny)

tod_miller (792541) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709637)

Just to put parent and sibling down:

As a brit male who has sown his seed in many a fine field, both here and abroad - the concentration of fine women does not differ greatly, however in tourist places or high profile places (in city centers) where shopping is good you will find some fine filly.

It is true, there are many corners of foreign fields that will be forever england. I just cannot remember some of thier names.

Tod the stud (I was drunk)

Re:known for beautiful women?? (3, Funny)

eatmywake (858118) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709642)

The UK is known for many things, great food, a wonderful climate and beautiful women.

This is what is known as a "e u p h e m i s m"! It can be read as "The UK is known for many things, fish 'n chips, overcast skies and slappers."

Re:known for beautiful women?? (2, Insightful)

Grimster (127581) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709654)

You forget bad teeth. But a good british accent can be sexy on a woman, not as sexy as a french accent but it'll do.

Good food and good weather? haha cute.

Now on to the topic, TV piracy seems... I dunno almost impossible, ASSUMING it's something I get normally. How can you "pirate" say, Survivor (ugh) it comes on my TV normally, it's not something I couldn't watch otherwise, so what if I decide to watch it on saturday night around 1am via an mpeg? Ok so I didn't record it myself, I COULD have. Is it any more piracy for me to download that episode of south park, or Tivo it?

Sure I suppose if it's something I wouldn't normally get but then another argument comes into play "if I wasn't ever gonna get it no way, have I taken anything away from the provider?" it's not like "hey I was gonna buy this DVD but I downloaded it instead" ok that's theft of a sort, or "hey instead of buying this music cd I got it via kazaa" this is TV shows, they kinda give those away anyway.

Yeah I know, all sortsa lawyers could shoot all sortsa holes in my arguments but really what's being pirated? Either you get the show normally and could easily enough record it yourself or you wouldn't ever get the show at all normally and you're merely adding to the viewership, I can't see how this would be a "bad thing" for the people behind the show "hey not only did we get a nielsen rating of X there were at least another Y thousand viewers via internet downloads, PEOPLE LIKE OUR SHOW, please renew our contracts, k thx".

I dunno just seems like a no lose situation for the studios, it's not like they sell me the TV shows I watch (I wouldn't PAY for most of them UGH TV sucks ass).

Re:known for beautiful women?? (1)

mboverload (657893) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709759)

Exactly. If it could have recorded and watched it myself, how the hell can you say I pirated it? After all, I "own" the original by seeing it or having automatic timeshift files on my DVR's hard drive.

Re:known for beautiful women?? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11709679)

The beautiful ones are the visitors from overseas. :-)

Malfunction, Will Robinson! (5, Funny)

Xner (96363) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709578)

"The UK is known for many things, great food, a wonderful climate and beautiful women."

My sarcasm detector must be malfunctioning, I actually had to read that twice before it blipped ...

Re:Malfunction, Will Robinson! (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11709728)

What do you call a pretty girl in the UK? A tourist.

Re:Malfunction, Will Robinson! (1)

R.Caley (126968) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709739)

I'm sitting here eatind some rather nice cheese, looking at the bright sun on the red sandstone building oposite contrasting with the gorgeous blue sky with just a decrorative amount of cloud and thinking ``damn, all the women must have gone to the US to become hollywood stars and supermodels''.

Re:Malfunction, Will Robinson! (5, Funny)

meitsjustme (415702) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709742)

Britain, Britain, Britain! Discovered by Sir Henry Britain in sixteen-oh-ten. Sold to Germany a year later for a pfennig and the promise of a kiss. Destroyed in eighteen thirty-fourty two, and rebuilt a week later by a man. This we know. Hello. But what of the people of Britain? Who they? What do? And why?

Piracy is why Battlestar Galactica is on usenet. (3, Funny)

ABeowulfCluster (854634) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709579)

.. not like any of you whippersnappers know what USENET is...

Re:Piracy is why Battlestar Galactica is on usenet (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11709618)

Quiet you! They'll never find out about it if you don't mention it!

Nothing to see here folks.

Usenet? Why that's what they called the internet before it went global. Yup. U.S. Experimental Network. That's what it was called. Al Gore ya know, he invented it.

TV Tax (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11709580)

Must be because of the TV Tax. There might be a lot of people who want to watch some TV programs but don't want to buy a TV because they don't want to pay TV tax.

Re:TV Tax (4, Interesting)

Xner (96363) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709597)

Nonsense. I bet you dollars to scones that every Brit in the relevant age group just pays the TV tax without batting an eyelash.

Thre real reason for rampant TV piracy on this side of the pond is that shows are released a lot later around here, sometimes even YEARS. This does encourage people to take their viewing habits into their own hands.

Re:TV Tax (4, Insightful)

gowen (141411) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709635)

Exactly. Why do Brits download so much US TV
i) They don't want to wait for it appear over here.
ii) Unlike other European countries, they don't need TV companies to dub/subtitle it into a different language.

File under : Not Rocket Science.

Re:TV Tax (5, Interesting)

Xner (96363) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709685)

Expounding a bit more on your point two ..

ii) Unlike other European countries, they don't need TV companies to dub/subtitle it into a different language.

This is very significant. Even here in the netherlands where most people speak english at an excellent level, the majority of the population is not able to follow a sub-title-less show. I have no idea whether it is due to lazyness (being used to reading subs), actual language problems or unfamiliarity with accents and vocabulary I have no idea. However it is a rather large issue.

BTW, the french have a very active fansubbing community for most mainstream shows. Just search on you favourite P2P netowork for VOST (voix originelle sous-titres francaises).

Re:TV Tax (1)

Tim C (15259) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709715)

Oh rubbish. I don't know a single person who doesn't own at least one TV, and in many cases a number of them. Sure, lots of people grumble about the TV licence, but I don't know a single person who actually objects enough to not own a TV.

Hell, it's only £10 a month - in London, that's often not enough for a round of drinks down the pub.

People are downloading TV shows because they miss them (perhaps they hear about them too late), because they didn't/can't record them and they're not available on DVD/video yet, or because they are and they're too cheap or too poor to buy them. The TV licence has absolutely nothing to do with it.

We don't want to miss outt... (2, Interesting)

tardinha (603078) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709585)

I guess that just shows that the television we all want to watch is not available to us (in Australia) via normal means. I guess those figures also show that we're all watching American telly :)

Re:We don't want to miss outt... (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11709722)

It's unfortunate, but that's the case. For a while anyway.

When my DSL was connected, I spent the first 2 months downloading gigs & gigs of television, eager to find out what the rest of the world was watching. All of these television shows the US and Europe was getting that we never saw, not even on cable or satellite television.

And I watched them all, and I downloaded more, and in the end... ...I realised television really has the absolute most shitty quality content of any medium bar none.

I imagine once broadband takeup in australia approaches the maximum, there won't be the influx of broadband-newbies to keep up the multi-GB downloads of foreign television crud that's as bad as our own homegrown crud.

In fact... (3, Interesting)

upside (574799) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709750)

If you ever go on a t0rren7 site that has UK TV shows on it, you'll find that many, if not most, downloaders are people living abroad craving for quality TV. Many are living in yankistan or canuckistan. I won't hazard a guess if they're all Brit refugees or natives.

I'm not sorry if I've offended someone.

What shows? (0)

Capt'n Hector (650760) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709586)

What shows are they downloading? BBC stuff, or American? If it ain't the second, perhaps this is the time to crack a joke about how bad American TV is....

Re:What shows? (5, Informative)

ghoti (60903) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709609)

If you had read the article, you'd know it's 24, Enterprise, and Six Feet Under ...

Re:What shows? (3, Funny)

Gumph (706694) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709686)

If you had read the article, you'd know it's 24, Enterprise, and Six Feet Under ...

I would just like to take this opportunity on behalf of my great nation to apologise for the Enterprise thing - not sure what we were thinking, the series must be playing on it's predecessors good PR!
We will petition the PM and get back to downloading Pr0n forwith!

Re:What shows? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11709718)

Agree. As a responsible American, I too will accept my well-deserved beating for that atrocity Enterprise and Rick Berman.

Re:What shows? (1)

Xner (96363) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709731)

I would just like to take this opportunity on behalf of my great nation to apologise for the Enterprise thing - not sure what we were thinking

Actually, I dont mind watching it. It is a lot more accessible than the usual Trek programs, which is a mixed blessing. On one hand it's definitely less "trek", on the other it seems to appeal to my gf, which is a good thing. Now if only she would stop singing along with the theme song ... AARGH!

With all the bad rep this show's been getting, I can't help but feel that it's still better than 90% of the popular pseudo-sci-fi series out there.

Wrong number (5, Informative)

ghoti (60903) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709588)

According to TFA, the UK accounts for 38.4% of _EU_ downloads, but only 18.5% worldwide. For comparison, the worldwide number makes a bit more sense ;)

more numbers... (5, Informative)

Cryptnotic (154382) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709674)

Considering that the UK has roughly 1/5th or so of the population of the U.S. (60 million UK, compared to probably 300 million US), the number of downloads per capita is much larger over there.

goddamned funny (0, Redundant)

jaxon6 (104115) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709590)

That first sentence had me laughing out loud. Keep the descriptions full of this wit; I'll keep reading.

Blame it on Licensing (0, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11709593)

It probably has to do with their crazy TV licensing program. Since they have to pay a yearly license to get own a TV, they might as well download only download the shows that they want to watch.

winge (4, Funny)

CGP314 (672613) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709594)

The UK is known for many things, great food, a wonderful climate and beautiful women.

...and for complaining about absolutely everything in a sarcastic manner.


-Colin [colingregorypalmer.net]

Australians download TV shows... (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11709595)

... because there is a serious lack of content. Unless you like cop shows.

Damn it was hard going back there after US cable.

All lies (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11709598)

The post states that UK is known for great food, a wonderful climate and beautiful women all of which we know to be blatantly false so how can we possibly belive the download stats :-)

plantation laws keep Ameri-sheeple in chains (0, Troll)

Cryofan (194126) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709599)

Maybe the Aussies and Brits are not subject to a draconian legal system designed to control the common man for the benefit of the wealthy? I think our American legal system was evolved especially for controlling property, and people have been property in America for a long time, since its beginning, when we had indentured servants, and then African slaves. And now consumers are the New Property. And the same old brutal plantation-oriented laws are being focused on American consumers.

Re:plantation laws keep Ameri-sheeple in chains (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11709713)

Absolutely. It's the same legal system that was initially instituted by the aliens that built the pyramids. Damn those aliens!

Re:plantation laws keep Ameri-sheeple in chains (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11709753)

You're comparing downloading television programs with slavery? Must be one of those causes that needs hyperbole to rile up the morons to follow you.

We more or less have laws to the same effect, but as we all know apart from a few exceptions television program 'piracy' is barely enforced.

Not surprising (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11709600)

UK TV sucks, theres nothing but home-improvement, lame-ass "reality" shows and cooking programmes. No anime at all I'm afraid :(

Re:Not surprising (1)

FinestLittleSpace (719663) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709683)

nearly everything DOES suck on TV in the UK. BUT when there's satire, it's absolutely incredible.

Take 'This Morning with richard not judy' for example, or maybe a bit of 'the adam and joe show', or a bit of 'i am not an animal', or a bit of 'brass eye'...etc...etc

Makes a bit of sense. (5, Insightful)

Grendel Drago (41496) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709601)

Well, since US television tends not to make it to Britain for a long time after it airs here, it makes a bit of sense. A lot of shows have a one- or two-season lag time. It makes sense that fans who follow the show online would want to see the show as it comes out.

On the other hand, I score TV shows because I fucking hate commercials, and because I don't have an actual television any more. Funny how original Star Trek was about fifty-five minutes long, while newer "full hour" shows are more like forty-two minutes. That's nearly four times the ads. Yecch.

Also, it's convenient to be able to watch them when and how I'd like. And I get to insulate myself from the vast bulk of crap that's on TV most of the time, and pick the best of what's out there. (Firefly, Babylon 5 and perhaps some softcore lesbian porn: The L Word.)

--grendel drago

Re:Makes a bit of sense. (1)

mboverload (657893) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709621)

I hear you.

Stupid TV networks, I am WAITING (yes WAITING!) to pay them MONEY so I can download even DRMed TV shows! They _just_dont_get_it_ (Read my comment below)

Re:Makes a bit of sense. (5, Insightful)

Xner (96363) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709649)

Well, since US television tends not to make it to Britain for a long time after it airs here, it makes a bit of sense. A lot of shows have a one- or two-season lag time. It makes sense that fans who follow the show online would want to see the show as it comes out.

It is also common for some of the less popular series (including some that we geeks tend to appreciate more than the normal tv-watching person) to get cancelled or postponed by the broadcaster mid-season, or to undergo some intruiging re-arrangements in broadcast schedule etc. For example here in Holland, I have seen the first seaon of Futurama on three different broadcasters, but the final season is just now hitting the cable.

If you really case to watch a whole series properly in order and in a timely manner, downloading is pretty much your only option. If you drop the timely requirement, waiting for the DVD releases is a close second.

Re:Makes a bit of sense. (1)

JohnHegarty (453016) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709723)

Some programs run ahead of the US over this side of the pond. Battlestar Galatica and i think we are ahead on SG1.....

Re:Makes a bit of sense. (3, Insightful)

giginger (825703) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709725)

Exactly why I download. I have a long train journey every day. I love being able to watch 24 or whatever I've got on the way home and pass the time a lot quicker. No adverts either which a bonus for me. I'm still going to get the boxsets when they come out but why should I wait when with the technology available means I can watch it the next day? I'd happily pay for the service if it was offered, so that I could watch the TV shows I want to watch at a suitable time. The time between a show airing in America and airing in England are inexplicably large. I think 24, yes again, is one of the few shows with only a few weeks between them. But then, to see that now I'd have to have Sky which is another problem......

America (4, Insightful)

mboverload (657893) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709602)

This makes perfect sense. With the proliferation of boradband and the anger of watching TV shows a year or more after their American counterparts, it it understandable. I know what it feels like because Europe got to watch Battlestar Galactica before we did, so I just donwloaded it.

Didn't have to watch comercials and it was better quality then the crap Comcast quality I get. I would have paid money to see them in high resolution and with better sound, but these executives just don't seem to get it. I can download a TV show in less than an hour, in fact, I can download faster than I can watch. It is all about the industry clinging to a dieing business model and not seeing the future. Fine, do a 5-computer iTunes thing with DRM, it is not like music where I need to listen to them anywhere.

We do pay for it (3, Interesting)

tod_miller (792541) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709608)

I know a lot of countries have TV Licenses - but the BBC takes the piss. We *PAY FOR THE PRODUCTION* of a TV show, but then pay OVER THE ODDS for the DVD's when they come out.

BBC make enough money to either a) scrap tv license or b) give us cheaper DVD's.

To be honest, I would preffer latter, Most people spend more on BBC DVD's than they do on licenses nowwadays (only takes one or two Christmas prezzies of the office to do that).

So I say, I paid for it already, give it to me. I think it is legal for me to download the prisoner DVD rips (I have never seen this show, I want to) because I pay the license fees already.

TV rental, a lovely fiscal model already in place.

I absolutely hate.. (3, Insightful)

sirdude (578412) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709611)

when the press spouts statistics without any reference as to how the data was collected..

let's see.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11709622)

1) American produces the most english language TV programs in the world, 2) they're shown on American TV first, 3) Australia and UK have to wait, sometimes years, to see the "latest show"

Conclusion : some english speaking country other than America will be downloading American TV shows.

As a guess, UK is as good as any.

Ciao

Blame the pub (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11709623)

Often good TV progs in the UK are on stupid nights of the week like Fridays when I'm out socialising down the pub. And I often forget to set the DVD recorder so bit torrent is invaluable.

Aaaaah, stereotypes (4, Insightful)

Shaper_pmp (825142) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709625)

"The UK is known for many things, great food, a wonderful climate and beautiful women..."

I'm assuming this is an attempt at sarcasm, but apart from the "wonderful climate" I wouldn't have realised. Sure we have a reputation for crap food, but then Americans have a reputation as ignorant redneck fuckwits, and we all know that's true, right?

Hmmm, someone has a problem with Brits, no?

Re:Aaaaah, stereotypes (1)

Celt (125318) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709733)

no, I have a problem with Americans who voted for Bush though :)

I'm curious did they include NI or perhaps R.Ireland in these stats?

Re:Aaaaah, stereotypes (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11709736)

Americans have a reputation as ignorant redneck fuckwits, and we all know that's true, right?

well, sadly that is true. however, after having spent some time in your lovely country I can honestly say that:

your food sucks

your climate sorta sucks (but i come from the Pacific Northwest in the states and the climate is quite comparable)

the majority of your women are doughy and not so fantastic looking. The guys however were better looking on average than those around these parts. Perhaps we need to initiate some sort of exchange program? eer wait I guess that'd work to my disadvantage - nevermind ;)

people are nice and relatively intelligent by and large although i found quite a few exceptions.

I don't have a problem with brits just so you know.

Excuse me? (5, Insightful)

alexwcovington (855979) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709630)

Sorry if I'm stating the obvious, but it's television. Signals broadcast through the air. Sorry to burst the bubbles of the folks in Hollywood, but you can't control the genie if you're throwing it out of the bottle at the speed of light. Accept the fact that people have the right to record their television shows, and don't complain when they trade them.

Couple things to think about (1)

Dancin_Santa (265275) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709632)

Considering the population of Britain, and especially comparing it to the population of a huge country like the United States, that little group of TV-program pirates take up a huge amount of bandwidth.

I guess you can understand the low volume in the U.S., the television programs, though low in quality, are high in production value. I've never seen a high-production value British program. That kind of glitter and chintz keeps people coming back to American programming (which, aside from Japanese anime porn) is what I figure these downloaders are interested in.

Face it. On the evolutionary scale, we're all still fascinated by der blinkenlights.

Re:Couple things to think about (2, Insightful)

1u3hr (530656) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709702)

I guess you can understand the low volume in the U.S., the television programs, though low in quality, are high in production value. I've never seen a high-production value British program.

In the US, you can see everything you want on cable first runs. If you want a copy you can TiVO it. In the rest of the world, we have to wait months, or up to two years for them to show up on our sets. In Hong Kong I can buy the Sopranos and Six Feet Under on DVD six months or a year before they're shown on TV. I'm not devoted enough to download them though.

But as for production quality; there are many, especially historical, British TV series of world class and the nature documentaries are the best in the world; often if you look at the credits you'll note they're co-productions with American, Canadian, Australian networks to spread the cost.

Re:Couple things to think about (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11709729)

You can't really compare the production values of one-offs like documentaries of Britain with the everyday programming of the U.S. They are two completely different genres.

Compare apples to apples, the average British sitcom/news program/game show with the average American corollary and it isn't even a contest. British television (excluding documentaries, as noted above) is currently where American television was 20 years ago.

Oddly enough... (1)

clawDATA (758072) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709634)

Don't you think this correlates to the number of available television channels?

Maybe if they had more choice and freedom in what they wanted to watch, the level of licence-abuse (which is what this is) would drop.

The same could be applied to anything that's "pirated".

It is not for the lack of trying (1)

Matrix2110 (190829) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709639)

"and the US in third at a pitiful 7.3%"

I am sorry, I am certain that I have caused my ISP much grief by converting from elitist bitcher with a high profile to a total downloader burning tons of bandwith while maintaining a low profile.

Call me what you will, At least I get my downloads.

Matrix

American TV (0, Flamebait)

dhart (1261) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709641)

And *what* are they downloading, the Brits and the Aussies? Sh*t American TV, mostly. It's sad, really sad.

A mate of mine is a doctor, and he spends half of his spar time downloading sh*t American TV (24 hours, ugh! 24hrs of pain!), then burning off VCDs or DVDs and handing them out. Although, I must admit, I wouldn't have seen Penn & Teller's BULLSHIT otherwise!

Re:American TV (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11709758)

In the UK you're probably right, since the US is the main producer of the TV shows they cant get straight away.

Here in Australia, however, I can vouchsafe that most people I know who download tend to get a nice blend of BBC shows as well as american. Shows that are only just now showing here I remember seeing at friends houses up to a year ago, which is quite a discrepancy.

If they released the shows here at around the same time as the US/UK, you can be sure that TV episode piracy would drop dramatically - they'd still get recorded, they just wouldn't show up on surveys like this.

Piracy ?? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11709645)

ok this artical is pure flamebait.
first , i will ignore the semi racist jokes (replace
UK for "blacks" and you will see how racist it sounds)
second , it isnt piracy if it isnt illegal .
if these people were in america then it would be piracy , we are not so it isnt.
so stop trying to paint those four countrys(Scotland , wales , Northern irland,england) as full of criminals, as under no way are they

Funny, you seem to have left the other one out (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11709661)

so stop trying to paint those four countrys(Scotland , wales , Northern irland,england) as full of criminals, as under no way are they

No, you shipped them all off to Oz!

Re:Funny, you seem to have left the other one out (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11709701)

;) im unfammiliar with Australian law , so i dont know if said downloading is illegal in oz

Friend and Joey Anyone? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11709647)

Simple reason, in England we are all tired of repeats of 'firends' on all channels at once. And Joey, don't even 'go there' as friends and joey would say 10 times per episode...

Re:Friend and Joey Anyone? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11709724)

Friends and Seinfeld - two blights on an otherwise admirable American culture.

License Fee (1)

AvernusInflux (676983) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709648)

I happily pay the TV license fee because I know that it goes to support the BBC and its endevours - hell its worth it just for the website let alone the advert free TV. My point is that maybe its *because* we get pay that we feel it entitles us to free TV from *any* source. So we download without feeling guilty. I would how this would compare with the music industry which is the same in the US as the UK?

Re:License Fee (1)

chrisbeatty (811646) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709748)

The license fee is a bargain, you get the TV channels, local & national radio, the websites.

The service given through Public Service Broadcasting is immense, they can broadcast shows that no one else would look at the number of people who got a break from the BBC must be huge

The lack of ads in shows is a major bonus, I watched the first to series of 24 on BBC2 but when it moved to Sky (& had ads in it) I just got them from a mate on DVD-R

pr0n (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11709655)

The pr0n channels on Sky digital cost money, thats why,

My Boss (2, Funny)

krumms (613921) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709658)

My supervisor at work probably accounts for about half of all the Australian TV downloads. Absolute champion.

I personally don't see the point: Just go watch the TV for real you fucking nerds! :P

Collections (1)

Dom_ILTP (713007) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709659)

i have many tv shows in DivX and dvd ... if its not out on dvd ill download it... the latest season of the west wing isnt going to be shown in the UK till about september... so thats on my hard drive at the moment, as soon as it comes out on dvd it is added to my collection

Australia 2nd? (1)

Nqdiddles (805995) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709662)

Does anyone else find it strange that a country of 20 million people can account for roughly double the downloads of a country over ten times its size? The figures for Australia seem a perfect example of why studios should aim for simultaneous release dates for their tv shows across the globe. Even the relatively low speeds and high cost of broadband in Australia don't seem to be hampering the downloads. Some episodes receiving their first airing in Australia are TWO SEASONS behind the US release dates. Is it any wonder Aussies want to see the shows they see previewed on ET? I had many friends (Aussies) telling me how good the first season of Lost and Battlestar Galactica were - before they even ran the pilots in Australia. Surely putting it on at the same time would negate the "need" most people would have to download it.

Re:Australia 2nd? (1)

Mayor Pedros (796378) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709755)

Hey man, i don't - I'm Aussie! It's not 2 seasons, mate - Days of our Lives was running 4 to 5 seasons behind! (when the network showing it decided to skip a few seasons to be one season behind, hardly anyone realised). ST:TNG was only screening Season 1 when you guys in US were Season 5/6 - so we had tapes of episodes sent over! Now we're lucky to be only a season or two behind - it's because rating seasons are different here in Australia and the networks save them up like greedy kids in lolly shops. We've only just seen the BSG miniseries - the TV series isn't on... do you expect us to wait another year for it?

Private vs Public (2, Insightful)

BrynM (217883) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709666)

I know TFA is about pirated content, but with the amount of public TV in the UK, it doesn't surprise me that they feel more of an "ownership" to what's broadcasted. Sadly, no matter how much time/money I dontate to PBS here in the US, they will probably never do what the BBC is doing [slashdot.org] with their old shows. Though I must admit, with new content PBS is on the right [pbs.org] track [pbs.org] .

I personally hope downloads become more of a broadcast medium. Sure, throw some commercials in that 320x240 video! I'll watch them to watch decent News/Information/Entertainment. If I could subscribe to the Daily Show [comedycentral.com] and scrap cable, I would. Even for like $10-$20 a month. I grab legal stuff from some places like Archive.org [archive.org] and play it on my PDA. There's some good content online both streaming and to download, but the models for getting to it (subscribe al la iFilm/Real, finesse google syntax, pray) suck when compared to downloading a file that I can convert into any format for any player I wish from the pirate channels. This, like other entertainment IP problems, comes down to convenience for a lot of folks. Listen up Networks!

Beautiful Women? (1)

NoelWeb (797393) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709668)

I can only think of one, Elizabeth Hurley... and damn is she fine. So, to correct this post, it should read "The UK is known for downloading the most TV shows, and for a having a beautiful woman, Miss Elizabeth Hurley." May God bless her.

Women? (4, Funny)

rxmd (205533) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709681)

The UK is known for many things, great food, a wonderful climate and beautiful women.
Don't forget the excellent beer!

Mmm... Stella... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11709695)

Carbonated piss...

Food, Weather, Women, Beer, and Teeth! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11709749)

The UK is known for many things, great food, a wonderful climate and beautiful women.
Don't forget the excellent beer!

And the superb dental care!

Food for thought for the __AA... (4, Insightful)

JamieF (16832) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709690)

People will pay for bandwidth, then spend time searching and downloading and burning to CD-R that which you broadcast for free.

Bottled water. Seriously. It's a business model. You don't have to sue people who drink from the tap to make it work, either.

I can think of quite a few shows that I'd pay a bit to see again, and maybe burn to CD. If I knew they'd be available at the same price essentially forever, I wouldn't even bother hoarding them.

"Not on this side of the pond" (1)

Trurl's Machine (651488) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709704)

I think the simplest explanation is in eternal stupidity of media moguls on both sides of the pond. They extremely often say "Oh no, it's just a British/American fad, nobody wants in on our side of the pond". Most moronic examples are the refusal of American labels to release the Beatles on the US market ("we don't need British imitation of our rock'n'roll") or what American television did (and did not) with "The Monty Python's Flying Circus". In the age of Internet, it's just much easier to get a "bootleg" edition that, say, a bootleg "Love Me Do" single in 1963. So when British TV fans can't wait to watch some cool American TV shows - they just click and get their bootlegs, before old Auntie Beeb finally wakes up and decide to broadcast it.

scifi is best! (1)

zebulon_g (860595) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709710)

Well, I dont watch a lot of TV but the UK seems to push out a lot of HDTV rips of most of the scifi programs I like to watch.
I noticed that programs like Stargate (SG1 & Atlantis) seem to air in the UK before anywhere else.
These guys seem to have it down to an art form. They even have links to TV guides. http://www.btefnet.net/ [btefnet.net]
Most people couldnt be bothered with adverts and this is a good way to avoid all of that. Sadly, its still illegal though.

38.4% of all statistics are made up on the spot... (1)

FrostedWheat (172733) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709732)

Wouldn't it be impossible to track this kind of thing? I'd say this 38.4% is just an estimate.

And calling it Piracy is just plain silly.

UK TV Licenses (2, Funny)

Napoleon Blownapart (767443) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709757)

Speaking as a UK citizen I quite enjoy the UK TV license system and their amusing requests for money.

The letters are funny too.

"Dear Sir.

We are really quite angry that you haven't bought a tv license.

While we have no proof that you actually have a tv we assume you've got one because, well, most people have got one.

Failure to buy a license will result in us sending you another letter telling you how angry we are."

The TV industry failing to adapt (4, Insightful)

gspr (602968) | more than 9 years ago | (#11709761)

This is such a good example of a current gigantic industry failing to adapt to the new world. Take for instance the exceptionally good (well, for TV these days, anyway) series LOST. It airs at a specific time each week, meaning I would have to be at a specific location, namely in front of my television, at that time each week in order to follow the series. That's a lot to demand when you're really busy. Instead, I have been downloading the series from the Internet, so that I can see the episodes whenever I have time and feel like it.
Now, what the industry needs to grasp is that if they provided me a service with:
  • Fast download speeds
  • No DRM
  • Open format video
  • Acceptable price
, then I would USE IT instead of getting the episodes using BitTorrent without paying for them.

I am not downloading the series because I am cheap, I am downloading the series because of the flexibility it gives me. This is something the TV industry can EXPLOIT to earn money. The Internet will not kill the TV industry, as long as the TV industry understands that it needs to adapt.
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