A while back I read a great piece by MG Siegler about how he was being forced to pirate the television show Game of Thrones because HBO wasn’t making the content available to viewers until very recently. Because the TV industry was trying to maximize the value of its content in each stage of its lifecycle Because of that, potential purchasers found it easier to download illegally than to wait and pay legally to view it; however, given the choice, the article argues, users are willing to pay a fair amount to use something legally instead of pirating it – music, videos, software, you name it.
Well it seems Orange read this article, too, because they’re making the Game of Thrones Season 3 episodes available to their French subscribers just one day after the show airs in the US.
This is a big move for a French content provider – US TV Shows can take months or years to make it overseas, depending on an initially estimate of how much it will lease French audiences. This means that for internationally-minded French viewers of, say, How I met Your Mother, your friends are talking online about a season of the show that you haven’t even seen yet, because it won’t be shown in France for another 6 months.
Orange attributes their attempt and shortening and nearly eliminating the language delay, which they think it will be “more attractive than Piracy” when you know its right in front of you. I personally am a big fan of this move by Orange, and would like to see this whole issue taken to court, as there is no reason why content should have a different premiere date based on what country it’s in.