Netflix monitors pirate sites to decide what movies and series to buy

Netflix closely monitors pirate websites to find out which TV series and movies it should buy.  The service checks pirate sites to determine what the most popular TV series and movies are on pirate sites and then buys them. An example is the immense popular serie Prison Break.


Netflix’s vice president of content acquisition, Kelly Merryman,  revealed this to a Dutch news site.  “With the purchase of series, we look at what does well on piracy sites,” she said. “Prison Break is exceptionally popular on piracy sites. “But there are many shows we won’t buy, such as The Voice. Live shows are better suited for regular TV.”  Netflix’s CEO, Reed Hastings, previously told the same Dutch site that he believes his company  brings piracy down as it’s easier to use than Bittorrent, although it would never stop all pirates.

“In Canada BitTorrent is down by 50% since Netflix launched three years ago,” he said. “But there are still a lot of people who use torrent sites.” Besides looking at pirate sites, Netflix also monitors also looks at ratings and what movies are popular in cinemas. The company also creates their own exclusive series, which do well. Netflix won two Emmy awards for its political thriller House of Cards.