People love "Arrested Development" so much they're actually willing to pay for it. Around 100,000 people illegally downloaded the show's season 4 in the first 14 hours that it appeared on Netflix. Believe it or not, that number is nothing compared to the season premieres of other TV shows, and that likely has to do with the fact that "Arrested Development" was easily and inexpensively available online through the popular streaming-video service.
"I think the piracy numbers for Arrested Development do not really stand out," TorrentFreak editor Ernesto (it's a pseudonym) told The Huffington Post. "They are far below cable shows such as Game of Thrones, Breaking Bad and Dexter."
"Game Of Thrones," HBO's beloved fantasy drama, broke BitTorrent's record with over 1 million downloads in the first 24 hours after the third season began airing in March.
"This was totally expected as it's easier and cheaper to access Netflix content for most people," Ernesto said. "The interesting question is how the numbers would have been if the show ran on a cable network."
HBO streams video online through HBO Go, a program that's only available to HBO subscribers. To subscribe to HBO, one must also have an expensive cable subscription. Young people, who are, arguably, the main audiences for these shows, often aren't willing to spend the money on cable, especially with an alternative like Netflix that costs only $7.99 for a basic account.
These "Game of Throne" fans are then left with two options: get a password from a parent or friend (an increasingly popular, though illegal, choice) or pirate the shows. People also share Netflix passwords, but the company offers a "family plan" under which it condones such sharing.
It's so easy to watch "Arrested Development" online via Netflix that it almost seems silly to pirate it. If you have a good product and you charge a reasonable price for it, people will buy.