Netflix First, BitTorrent After

Netflix First, BitTorrent AfterA recent statement from Netflix’s Chief Content Officer Ted Sarandos reveals that legal alternatives for movie enthusiasts are the best way to fight against online piracy. Why? Let’s see…

In an interview with Stuff, the man who’s been the head (for 13 years) of Netflix’s content acquisition department said that:

“I think people do want a great experience and they want access – people are mostly honest. The best way to combat piracy isn’t legislatively or criminally but by giving good options.”

“One of the things is we get ISPs to publicise their connection speeds – and when we launch in a territory the Bittorrent traffic drops as the Netflix traffic grows,” Sarandos continued.

However, it’s already common knowledge that not all of BitTorrent’s activity is about piracy; Netflix’s growth in traffic doesn’t necessarily mean that people stopped from downloading their favorite movies or TV shows, but at least a healthy percent chose legal services over illegal ones.

“The key thing is that BitTorrent is a Internet protocol, like HTTP. It moves data better than any other protocol. It’s an award winning technology used by Facebook, twitter, Wikipedia, Blizzard, genetic researchers and the scientists that are working on the Large Haldron Collider. Any company moving large data sets uses BitTorrent,” Christian Averill (Director of Communications at BitTorrent) told Josh Wolford of the WebProNews.

While people are free to download and upload both legal and illegal content via peer-to-peer, it becomes more and more obvious that Netflix and services alike make a valid point: give people what they want, when they want it (and this is probably the most important aspect of it), and everyone will be happier, including rightsholders.

Take the example of the HBO-produced TV series “Game of Thrones”. For two years in a row, the show had broken several records on BitTorrent’s networks, not because people were looking for illegal copies of it in particular, but because the different timelines of availability or the lack of it altogether. But this may change, as requests from thousands of people made the pearl of all premium cable services consider launching a movie streaming service without the strings of having cable subscription.

“One of the side effects of growth of content is an expectation to have access to it. You can’t use the internet as a marketing vehicle and then not as a delivery vehicle,” Sarandos concluded.

Maybe if content owners, creators, and all those anti-piracy activists would understand that, things would be easier and this unnecessary war against online piracy would finally come to an end or at least to a common ground.