While TV shows and anime are much easier to watch now thanks to various streaming platforms, piracy still hasn’t been eliminated. Though what’s interesting is that five of the top 10 most pirated shows of 2022 are anime titles.
Based on a report by Variety, five anime titles were among the most pirated shows of the past year in the US.
This might be an unexpected result for some, especially as anime shows aren’t part of the most-watched list in the US.
Anime Piracy and Streaming Sites
Right now, it’s easy to watch anime shows online legally, especially with the proliferation of streaming platforms like Crunchyroll and HIDIVE. Even major platforms like Netflix and Disney+ have anime libraries.
But this hasn’t always been the case, especially in the US. Going back to the early 2000s, many anime fans had to resort to either buying pirated DVDs or watching illegally uploaded anime episodes on YouTube or other platforms.
In the past years though, many seasonal anime titles have become increasingly available on platforms like Crunchyroll.
In fact, many shows are streamed via these legal channels shortly after their Japanese release.
Though it seems like old habits die hard, as many anime fans continue to pirate anime shows.
Specifically, the second most-pirated show of 2022 was one of the past year’s biggest anime hits.
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Most Pirated Anime Shows of 2022
While HBO’s House of the Dragon was the most pirated show of the year, right behind it is the shounen anime, Chainsaw Man.
Other anime shows on the list are Bleach (presumably Thousand-Year Blood War), The Eminence in Shadow, and others.
Here is the complete top 10 most pirated shows list of 2022:
- House of the Dragon Season 1 – 17%
- Chainsaw Man Season 1 – 13%
- Running Man Season 1 – 12%
- Rick and Morty Season 6 – 12%
- Moon Knight Season 1 – 9%
- Bleach – 9%
- The Eminence in Shadow – 8%
- The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power Season 1 – 7%
- Spy x Family Season 1 – 7%
- The Rising of the Shield Hero Season 2 – 6%
While old anime piracy habits are a possible reason, another likely explanation is the fragmentation of anime availability.
Many shows may be available on Crunchyroll, but other shows like Bleach: TYBW have more limited availability.
Given these results, it will be interesting to see how anime streaming platforms respond.
After all, there are possible ways to entice more viewers to watch on official channels, such as by streaming shows alongside their Japanese broadcast.
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