00:55 GMT +319 November 2019
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    Screenshot from P3's Dumpa series

    Norwegian TV Channel Blocks Saucy Video After 350 Million Views Mostly From India and Pakistan

    © Photo: NRK P3
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    An episode from a Norwegian series has unexpectedly drawn millions of overseas viewers despite the language barrier, mostly from India, Indonesia and Pakistan.

    Norway's P3 channel, which is run by national broadcaster NRK, has seen an unexpected and inexplicable spike in international popularity, with visitors from abroad flocking to its YouTube page.

    A subsequent analysis of the astounding figures revealed that overseas viewers were drawn by an episode of the Norwegian-speaking mini-series called "Dumpa" ("Dumped").

    The episode that gathered the impressive 350 million views features a tragic romantic scene involving a young man on military leave and his love-starved girlfriend, who happens to be six months pregnant.

    "The scene depicts the loaded atmosphere that arises when a young couple takes part in a beautiful photo session. There are just tops and sexy lingerie, and everything is perfectly within YouTube's very strict nudity standards", NRK's Eirik Solheim explained.

    Although the scene was intended to be "a little fun, a little sweet and certainly a bit sad", it remarkably appealed to people far outside NRK's target audience, regardless of language barriers.

    The click bonanza came from faraway countries, such as India, Indonesia, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Turkey. India alone accounted for 39 per cent of the total views.

    What several of these countries have in common, NRK suggested, is having introduced stringent national filters against porn sites. The filters were enacted shortly before the click explosion and may provide an apt explanation.

    The episode ends with Mia, the girl, kicking her lover out after learning that he is currently being treated for a sexually transmitted disease he contracted while in the army. This detail seems to have escaped the Norwegians' attention.

    As a result of the click stampede, P3's YouTube channel now has close to 1 million subscribers. Around 800,000 are estimated to be outside the channel's target audience, which distorts statistics and hampers analysis.

    NRK responded by blocking the video alongside several others, whose popularity it suspected was unnaturally inflated. Now, the broadcaster is considering installing geographical blocking mechanisms on some of their content.

    "We probably have other opportunities rather than blocking the videos, but we found that this was the best we could do in the short term. They are on hold and may be reopened later", P3 social media officer Daniel Ramberg told the newspaper Dagbladet.

    However, to the delight of overseas viewers, the episode is still up on Facebook.

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