Game of Thrones is known in equal measure for its densely interwoven plot and its many, many, many nude scenes. But recently, lusty clips and compilations from HBO’s biggest cash cow have slowly started disappearing from Pornhub, one of the internet’s biggest porn sites. Suffice it to say this will be an exercise in futility.
The Sun first reported the copyright claims, quoting an HBO spokesperson who said the network is, “in the process of getting material taken down from Pornhub.” And it does seem at least some videos have been taken down. TorrentFreak reports that uploaders are getting warning letters by the thousands, which demand that the pirates remove full episodes, clips, and compilations.
Compilations like these have existed for ages and can be found for just about every popular piece of media in which even the faintest hint of nudity appears. It’s the business model that sites like Mr. Skin rely on. A search for “[Movie Title] nude clips” will almost always yield a successful result, even if it’s just the dressed-down moments of one particular actor. Porny compilations for GoT started cropping up right after the show’s debut. So even if Pornhub is willing to comply with HBO’s demands, users are capable of uploading GoT’s copyrighted genitalia faster than they can be taken down. Cursory Pornhub searches—for the show’s actors, or even “Game of Thrones”—reveal many pages of serviceable results. Results from other porn sites, which HBO is seemingly not quite so focused on curtailing, are even more extensive.
Porn sites are far from the only places Game of Thrones scenes proliferate beyond their air date and HBO’s legitimate streaming options. On communities like Reddit’s r/watchitfortheplot—which features the show’s Emilia Clarke among the women in its header image—users happily post lascivious scenes to neutral platforms like Streamable, or cut them into gifs distributed via third-party hosting services like Gfycaor and Imgur. Nude scenes have also been compiled by torrenters so they can be dowloaded en masse. Just as you can download all of season 1 from a single torrent, so can you download all of that season’s breasts and butts. What a time we live in. Even legitimate websites, like the Huffington Post, have been compiling the show’s prominent nudity into season-based supercuts for years.
HBO has a long history of issuing takedown requests. It averages around 120,000 URLs requested to be stricken from Google each week. The network recently went to war with Game of Thrones prediction YouTuber Frikidoctor by issuing takedown requests for his spoiler-filled vlogs. HBO even tried to get VLC Media Player taken down back in 2013... for some reason. Those attacks both went about as well as HBO’s slow quest to get Westeros off of Pornhub.
In the end, HBO has pitched a battle on pirate boobs it probably can’t win—but that doesn’t mean it’s not going to try. We’ve reached out to HBO for details on its efforts, and we’ll update if we hear back.