And the Most Pirated TV Show Of All Time Is... The Grand Tour

The Grand Tour 6 photos
Photo: Amazon
The Grand Tour in South AfricaThe Grand Tour in South AfricaThe Grand Tour in South AfricaThe Grand Tour in South AfricaThe Grand Tour in South Africa
When Jeremy Clarkson decided to punch a producer right in the kisser, little did he know that the fracas saga would see him sign with Amazon Prime. Better still, the British presenter never expected for The Grand Tour to become the most illegally downloaded TV show... in the world [pun fully intended].
But The Grand Tour did just that. According to the Daily Mail, data compiled and analyzed by a technology company called MUSO puts The Grand Tour ahead of Game of Thrones in terms of piracy. The first episode, for example, is said to have been illegally downloaded 7.9 million times. Episode 2? 6.4 million times. As for the 3rd episode, that’ll be 4.6 million illegal downloads.

MUSO underlines that the biggest offenders are British fans of the show, who account for 13.7 percent of total illegal downloads of Episode 1, 2, and 3 of The Grand Tour. “We monitor thousands of campaigns and this one really stands out,” said Chris Elkins, chief commercial officer and co-founder at MUSO. The rip-off goes beyond that, the company zeroing in on the money lost by Amazon on the first episode alone due to piracy: “a potential £3.2 million.” At the current exchange rates, that’ll be $4 million, thank you!

When all is said and done, what Jeremy, Richard, and James are doing on The Grand Tour overshadows their stint at BBC Top Gear by a huge margin. Of the $250 million Amazon reportedly paid to make the show happen, $3.2 million were allegedly spent on the opening scene of episode 1. Arithmetics also suggest the guys have almost $7 million to devote to a single episode.

The question is, should Amazon fight the pirates who grab illegal copies of The Grand Tour off the Internet? On the one hand, it should because illegal downloading is not just a matter of copyright infringement. It’s a civil wrong that, in the civilized world like the UK and U.S., attracts criminal penalties.

On the other hand, it’s illegal downloads that made Top Gear a world-renowned show when Clarkson, Hammond, and May were at the helm. I feel for the people who can’t watch the show in their countries due to Amazon Prime’s availability, though. Dear Amazon, if Netflix is available around the world, you should do the same with Prime if you want to stop the pirates.
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About the author: Mircea Panait
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After a 1:43 scale model of a Ferrari 250 GTO sparked Mircea's interest for cars when he was a kid, an early internship at Top Gear sealed his career path. He's most interested in muscle cars and American trucks, but he takes a passing interest in quirky kei cars as well.
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