The secret is out: The smart way to watch HBO without paying for HBO is HBO Go, HBO’s excellent online service.
All you need to do is find a family member, or a friend, with an HBO subscription, get their username and password, and boom, you can watch all of HBO’s excellent programming through the web.
A lot of people have known about this for years, but it’s starting to get mainstream attention.
The New York Times asked HBO how it feels about the password sharing. On the record, it seems like HBO is pretty much shrugging.
But to the collective relief of nearly everyone I know, the companies with whom I spoke seemed to have little to no interest in curbing our sharing behaviour — in part because they can’t. They have little ability to track and curtail their customers who are sharing account information, according to Jeff Cusson, senior vice president for corporate affairs at HBO. And, he said, the network doesn’t view the sharing “as a pervasive problem at this time.”
This is a great opportunity for HBO. It can get users hooked on its shows, then crack down on password sharing eventually, and hope that a high percentage of those people feel compelled to pay for HBO.
Or, alternatively, the people sharing HBO passwords are young, and unable to afford HBO. When they get older, they’ll be willing to pay for HBO.