It remains to be seen whether this past weekend’s blockbuster Mayweather Vs McGregor event broke the pay-per-view record of 4.6 million buys set by Mayweather Vs Pacquiao back in 2015, but what we do know is that millions watched it via illegal pirate streams.
That’s the verdict of Irdeto, a digital security company who detected no less than 239 seperate illegal streams of the fight taking place live on a host of different media platforms.
In the past, traditional pirate websites had been the destination of choice for those looking to illegally watch an event like this, but in the present day there are far more options available, including Facebook, Youtube, Periscope and Twitch, which accounted for the majority of the streams in this case.
As a result, the company estimates that just shy of 3 million viewers watched the fight illegally on Saturday night.
Some level of piracy for marquee sporting events like this is inevitable, but the decision by the powers at be to charge $100 for the pay-per-view in the domestic market may well have driven more people to seek alternative ways to watch the most talked about fight of the year unfold live.
The attendance at the T-Mobile Arena was also hit by sky-high ticket prices, with only 14,623 of the 20,000 capacity venue’s seats being occupied.
Nevertheless, ‘Money’ Mayweather was claiming post-fight that the live gate may still be an all-time record, exceeding the $80 million barrier, compared to $72,198,500 for the Mayweather Vs Pacquiao showdown.