On Saturday, July 11, I was one of 5000 people who got to see exclusive footage of the WB film Suicide Squad. Hours later, an illegal, low resolution copy of the footage appeared on the Internet, despite the fact that showrunners and security were watching for people sneaking illegal cameras and filming during the trailers and footage. Two days later, WB was forced to release the footage in HQ, stating that they had hoped to keep it an exclusive for Comic Con attendees but they did not want low quality footage floating around on the Internet.
This wasn’t the first time that illegal footage has been leaked from San Diego Comic Con – in the past, BBC writers had threatened attendees when behind-the-scenes footage for shows like Doctor Who and Sherlock leaked early.
In a world where social media has made sharing content easy and quick, piracy has become a huge problem for music, TV, and film. Millions of dollars are lost when people choose to surf or download pirated content versus paying for a HQ, legal download through an approved site or vendor. Why download?
To some, they want the film now and free, no questions asked. For others, it acts as placeholder until the HQ version of the film/TV show comes out in their country.
I tend to be sympathetic to the companies producing the content, especially if its an indie production or a smaller budget film that is testing the waters to see if there’s an interest. I know going to the theaters is getting expensive but there’s a lot of options out there for seeing the film. (Attending a morning screening, seeing a film during the week, or seeing it at the bargain theater.)
What are your thoughts?