With only a few days left in the year, it makes sense to look back and sum it all up. Everyone is looking into their own back yard as TorrentFreak did and it came up with a top 10 most downloaded movies on BitTorrent this year.Fast Five took the number one spot, though its competitors were close by. The movie was downloaded by more than nine million people, 400,000 more than the runner-up The Hangover II, which had more than 500,000 downloads over the third place 'winner' Thor.
There is, or rather isn't, an interesting correlation, between the number of people who downloaded the movies and how much they grossed worldwide.
Overall, the top 10 movies were downloaded fewer times than last year's top 10. Avatar alone, which was the most downloaded title of 2010, racked up 16 million downloads.
However, the number of BitTorrent users hasn't dropped, so the fact that the top 10 movies have gathered less interest is not an indicator of a drop in BitTorrent usage.
There are several explanations for the drop and the effect may a combination of them all. A rise in legal alternatives, such as video streaming or renting sites, may have persuaded some people to leave their pirating days behind.
At the same time, BitTorrent is falling out of favor as the number one choice for the discerning pirate, especially for movies. With the cost of hosting and bandwidth going down, the number of illegal sites offering movie streaming has been on the rise.
Finally, the simplest explanation, and perhaps a likely one, is that the top 10 movies simply were not that appealing and that the number of movie downloads was more spread out over the titles that came out or were available this year.