Before the second season of “Insecure” debuts on July 23, HBO will offer all eight episodes of the first season free for 24 hours on YouTube.
The free bingeing opportunity will also be available at HBO.com as well as participating television and streaming partners’ platforms and free on demand channels, according to a news release. An HBO subscription is not required to stream the episodes.
The free stream begins at 6 a.m. EST on July 23.
The move could be interpreted as a ploy to generate interest in the second season of “Insecure,” co-created by and starring Issa Rae. It could also be looked at as a way to drive subscribers to HBO’s various platforms, although the bigger subscriber rush will likely take place the week before “Game of Thrones” returns on July 16.
As Deadline points out, this isn’t the first online viewing option for the series. The first episode of season one also debuted online in order to prevent it from running up against a presidential debate between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump.
Debuting series episodes off of pay TV or premium channels has become a strategy that other programmers and networks have used in order to drive interest in shows. In June, TNT streamed the first episode of new series “Claws” on Twitter one hour after it premiered on the linear channel.
The Twitter premiere for “Claws” marked the second such agreement between the social media platform and Turner. In April, Twitter streamed an encore of the "Not the White House Correspondents' Dinner" special for “Full Frontal with Samantha Bee” after its premiere on TBS.
"As we saw with our Full Frontal with Samantha Bee special in April, a streaming encore on Twitter has the power to reach new audiences and catch the attention of viewers who might not otherwise have sampled our show," said Michael Engleman, executive vice president of entertainment marketing and brand innovation at Turner, in a statement. "By giving viewers the opportunity to watch the premiere episode of Claws on Twitter, we're helping this terrific series build a strong fan base across the entirety of the season, and we're establishing a meaningful connection with those fans through social media engagement."