Back in January 2014, HBO CEO Richard Plepler revealed that he doesn't care if people share their HBO Go account passwords. Plepler told BuzzFeed that HBO were aware that it was going on, however "it just has no impact on the business" and that it's a "terrific marketing vehicle for the next generation of viewers." However, over the weekend, Emmy host Andy Samberg called out Plepler on his claim when he revealed his HBO Now login and password to the millions of viewers:
With a lovely Game of Thrones reference in the email address, and the world's most insecure password, the login was released to the public, and much to the surprise of everyone who tried it - it worked!
People flooded to the site to use Samberg's login, however, it wasn't long before disaster struck, and too many devices tried to use Andy's account all at once:
HBO was obviously overwhelmed by the thousands flocking to the website to use the service, and even sent out a some-what defeated sounding tweet to Samberg, who replied politely:
According to Advertising Age HBO were informed that there would be some sort of stunt involving the network, but were not informed of the details. With HBO now receiving a lot of media attention (over 8,110 mentions on Twitter!), many have branded the joke a blatant marketing ploy for the service, which launched on April 7th.
But, regardless of whether it was a marketing ploy or not, Andy Samberg's joke allowed many to see HBO content for free, and really when there's free episodes of The Soprano's up for grabs, everyone's a winner, right?