Word out of Hollywood this morning has the pirates busy sharing content that doesn’t legally belong to them. This time around, they are sharing the pilot episode of Supergirl, months before its release.
HD quality versions of the episode have popped up on Pirate Bay and other sites, giving fans a chance to illegally watch the episode ahead of its November debut on CBS. Interestingly, there are no watermarks on the pirated copies, leading piracy tracking firms to speculate the copy came from an advance review copy. As of this morning, the episode has been downloaded 120,000 times. A similar incident happened to The Flash in 2014, when the pilot episode showed up online, and the series had a lot of buzz leading up to the series debut on The CW.
Since this is the second time this has happened to a Warner Bros. show, one wonders if this is all part of a marketing stunt. Companies like HBO do not care too much if its content is pirated – the premium cable channel often brags that Game of Thrones is the most pirated show of all time, while at the same time promoting the popularity of the show by increases in subscribers. It makes sense that intentional leaks gives the studio a chance to get feedback from sites who jump on board the illegal download wagon and share what they like and don’t like about what they see, giving the studio a chance to make changes before air date.
Yes, it may be a good day for me to put on my tinfoil hat, but in a day an age when public beta of software is made available to the public to fix problems before a game or application launches, doing something similar to television via pirate channels works for me.