HBO may give zero fucks if you share your HBOgo password with everyone you’ve ever met. But they’re shutting down the fun of Game of Thrones fans in Brooklyn.
The Village Voice reports the Williamsburg bar Videology received a cease and desist letter from HBO, demanding they cancel their weekly viewing party, where patrons could gather in a cozy backroom and watch the newly aired season five together. Videology co-founder Wendy Chamberlain told Gothamist, “They have asked us to no longer show it, which is completely within their right, but we still are disappointed.”
Yahoo reports HBO’s reasoning, “As a pay subscription service, HBO should not be made available in public establishments. When it does happen, it is of particular concern when there is an attempt to profit off the programming. This is nothing new as we have taken such actions for well over a decade.”
Yeah, it’s totally within HBO’s rights to shut this down, just like they did with various bars showing The Sopranos back in 2002. But with Game of Thrones being pirated online at record levels, you’d think HBO’s priorities would be elsewhere. Plenty of bars screen the show, just as they do sporting events, and award shows. And it’s highly unlikely Videology’s Game of Thrones nights were any attendee’s sole reason not to get a HBOnow account. This is just a move that hurts the fans, who lost a great venue to geek out collectively over the latest exploits of Arya, Tyrion and Dany, while sipping on Game of Thrones’ beers.
But the silver-lining for Videology is the loads of free press this HBO move has brought. As a regular attendee of their Tuesday Night Movie Trivia, I say good for them. The bar on Bedford Avenue not only boasts cool custom cocktails, drool-inducing food and a back room with a massive screen perfect for
Game of Thrones viewing parties watching whatever they choose to show, but also offers a massive collection of movies and TV shows for rent, and a wide-array of movie/TV-lover activities like Mad Men bingo, live-readings of screenplays, and did I mention movie trivia? So even without Game of Thrones Sundays, it’s still a great place to get your Drunk Cersei on.
Kristy Puchko’s spirit animal is Drunk Cersei.