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August 13, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

Sunday night’s season premiere of Breaking Bad, which is ending its six-year run on AMC this season, attracted 5.9 million viewers, 3.6 million of whom were in the 18-49 age group, the key demographic for advertisers — a record for the series. Significantly, almost as many viewers watched the critically praised cable drama than watched the rival shows on CBS, ABC, and NBC combined. AdWeek commented on Monday that the ratings result indicated that “viewers have caught up to what may very well be the finest program on television.” Meanwhile,, which tracks BitTorrent usage, reported today (Tuesday) that within hours of airing on AMC, the show was pirated by 80,000 people, most of them overseas, and after 12 hours 500,000 had downloaded a copy of the file. Some 16 percent of the downloaders were Americans, suggesting that although the program was freely available to watch via cable in the U.S., many people preferred to download a copy.