From The Oatmeal’s comic – “I tried to watch Game of Thrones…”.
Of course, you could always just be patient and wait for the DVD box set, but that’s not quite as fun, is it?
Older blogger snarking aside – try waiting a year for a movie to possibly be released on VHS rental tape and THEN come and complain to me about not being able to see the stuff that you want to see when you want to see it – this comic nicely bashes the nail on the old proverbial.
Big Media companies want to create desire for their product, so that it has a ready-made audience who’ll pay to consume it. Then, via a combination of arrogance, shortsightedness and media rights deals structures which are so last century that it pains me to think of them, a large part of that eager audience is cut out of the picture.
Can’t afford to/don’t want to subscribe to a cable/pay tv package? You’re screwed. Have the misfortune to live in a country deemed unlikely to have an audience for the product? You’re boned. And as we geo-lock everything anyway and you’re not in the US, we don’t care about you anyway.
I never excuse piracy and what Big Media would term IP theft (is it still theft if there’s no legal way to acquire something?), but I can certainly understand why hardcore genre fans sometimes resort to it – if you can’t legally watch it via pay TV and there’s no streaming option, no physical media to import and you want to see it, are you supposed to just say “Bugger it!” and not bother?
At that point, a tv series has gone from being an entertainment to becoming a nerd-friendly quest with an entirely achievable end game – downloaded content on a hard drive – which takes money out of the creator’s pockets, out of the distribution system and makes the process of making television, films and games that bit tougher.
A simple solution – make it easier to buy your product, before Hollywood and it’s antiquated business model ends up being as decimated as the music business was by P2P sharing.