HBO Criticizes Periscope Over 'Game of Thrones' Live Streams, Issues Takedown Notices

Game of Thrones Season 5 Episode 1 - H 2015

Game of Thrones Season 5 Episode 1 - H 2015

Several users of the Twitter-owned live-streaming app were broadcasting the 'Game of Thrones' fifth-season premiere on Sunday night.

HBO has sent takedown notices to Periscope after users of the Twitter-owned live-streaming app were using it to broadcast the fifth-season premiere of Game of Thrones on Sunday night.

"We are aware of Periscope and have sent takedown notices," an HBO spokeswoman said in a statement. "In general, we feel developers should have tools which proactively prevent mass copyright infringement from occurring on their apps and not be solely reliant upon notifications."

Periscope, which allows people to live-stream video from their phones to their Twitter followers with the click of a button, notes in its terms of service that it does not support copyright infringement, but currently relies on reports from users alerting the company to the infringement. "We respect the intellectual property rights of others and expect Periscope users to do the same," the TOS read. "We will respond to notices of alleged copyright infringement that comply with applicable law and are properly provided to us."

The company, which has a team dedicated to content review, has the right to remove any illegal content and shut down a person's account if they are found to be violating the TOS.

Australian website Mumbrella reported on Sunday evening that Periscope users were broadcasting the Game of Thrones premiere on April 12 to their network of friends. The series long has been a target for pirates, topping TorrentFreak's list of most pirated TV shows of 2014. Several episodes of the fifth season also made their way onto file-sharing sites over the weekend and were downloaded more than 100,000 times in the first three hours they were available.