Is Couchtuner Legal and Safe? Discover the Seven Best Free Alternatives

Bonnie Aleman Last Updated by Bonnie Aleman on March 12, 2019

There are three common safety threats when accessing pirated content, including personal liability, ISP intervention, and the risk of malware.

Personal Liability

Streaming or downloading files from Couchtuner could potentially put you at risk of civil and criminal prosecution depending on where you live.

Couchtuner and similar companies include disclaimers in their terms of use, shifting the liability to the individual who uploads or downloads content.

ISP Intervention

Many internet companies cooperate with the entertainment industry, sending notices and warnings to users who access pirated music, movies, TV Shows, or other illegal content.

Companies can punish repeat offenders by canceling or temporarily interrupting their service or slowing down streaming speeds. In 2017, the US ended its six strikes’ anti-piracy initiative, which penalized people who viewed copyrighted content illegally. Even though the program is no longer active, ISPs still pursue users who access pirated material.

Malware, Viruses, and Ransomware

The spreading of malicious software which can infect or even shut down your devices is common among streaming sites. The content found on websites like Couchtuner isn’t scanned for malware before becoming publicly available.

If you choose to use these websites, having effective security measures in place is a necessity.

Is Couchtuner Legal?

This isn’t as simple as a yes or a no; but generally, downloading or hosting copyrighted material without a license to do so is illegal, while just accessing streamed content is within the law.

To flout the rules, companies like Couchtuner avoid storing content on their servers and embed links from secondary sources, but it’s a fine line.


Why You Should ALWAYS Use a VPN to Safely Stream on CouchTuner

Virtual Private Network (VPN)
Failure to use a VPN to obscure online activity can allow third-parties to track and log what you do. A VPN offers improved anonymity by masking your IP address and connecting individuals to the internet via a proxy server, allowing you to stream, download, and browse without it being associated with you.

This technique also allows you to bypass geo-restrictions and other online censorship, for a more open online experience.

Top VPNs implement no-logs policies to ensure online privacy further, and services like NordVPN and CyberGhost VPN include malware protection too.


CouchTuner watch online free
Couchtuner offers thousands of movies and TV shows, including programming from premium channels like HBO, STARZ, Showtime, and Cinemax, plus some currently in theatres, with many available in HD.

Annoyingly, CouchTuner is rife with excessive ads, and every click results in a new pop-up. Once you begin watching, there are more ads during streaming, but you can close them after a few seconds.

Seven Free Alternative to Couchtuner

1 PutLocker

Putlocker movie online
PutLocker offers a large selection of movies and TV shows arranged by genre and country, making it easy to find what you want to watch.

You must register for a free account before viewing content.

2 Flixtor

Flixtor includes a large selection of movies and TV shows, no registration or download necessary; however, if you sign up for a free account, you can create movie lists and gain access to VIP benefits.

Flixtor is also one of the few services without ads during streaming.

3 Popcorn Time

Popcorn Time streams free movies and TV shows online
Popcorn Time is currently operating in Beta mode and requires a download to work. The website includes a disclaimer on the home page that it might be illegal to view content depending on your country.

As Popcorn Time has an integrated media player, it allows for faster streaming.

4 TVCatchup

TVCatchup free_movies online
TVCatchup specializes in providing live streaming and on-demand access to channels rather than specific movies and shows, with the BBC, France 24, Millennium TV, Food Network, and dozens of other channels with worldwide appeal.

The company places ads in the content and outline that they could sell your browsing activity to third-party companies, and you cannot watch if you have ad blocking on.

TVCatchup requires a VPN to watch for viewers located outside of the US, and you have to register for a free account.

5 Sony Crackle

Sony Crackle movies online
Sony Crackle offers hundreds of acquired movies and TV shows, which you can search for by specific titles, rather than look through extensive lists. Movies are also categorized by genre, making it easy to search for the content you want.

Movies and shows include ads, which you can’t skip or fast forward, and registration allows you to create movie lists.

Viewers outside the US must use a VPN to view content.

6 Tubi

Tubi TV free movies online vpn
Tubi offers a small collection of both movies and TV shows, with free registration which allows you to queue videos.

You can set parental controls and request specific movies you’d like to see made available, and is compatible with Roku, Fire TV, Chromecast and Apple TV, PlayStation, and Xbox.

Non-US viewers must use a VPN to access content.

7 Solar Movie

Solar Movie free stream online
SolarMovie provides free access to both movies and TV shows, with a large selection, including some movies still in theatres, which you can search through by genre or country.

With an emphasis on Asian content, SolarMovie includes a selection from Japan, India, Thailand, and Korea, but you can find selections from the US, France, and the UK.

Using SolarMovie requires registering for a free account.

How Copyright Licensing Works

Paid services like cable, satellite, and online streaming companies like Netflix and Hulu, obtain copyright licenses, permitting them to host movies and TV shows. The companies pay hefty licensing fees, which they recoup in the form of monthly premiums charged to customers.

Free streaming services do not pay licensing fees.

How Services Offer Content Free of Charge?

Most free services use ad revenue to pay operating costs; however, advertisements and pop-ups can contain viruses, malware, or ransomware, or are simply disruptive.

Where to Stream TV and Movies Legally?

Subscriptions like Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime offer low-cost subscription services, with more comprehensive packages available with Hulu plus Live TV or PlayStation Vue.


Due to the potential legal consequences of streaming illegal content, you should always use a VPN when streaming free entertainment.

NordVPN and CyberGhost VPN include malware protection, giving you an extra layer of security in conjunction with better privacy, anonymity, and net neutrality.

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Bonnie Aleman
Bonnie Aleman worked in the financial industry for over a decade and learned firsthand the importance of implementing cyber security protocols. As a tech expert, she now enjoys educating others on ways to protect their identity and maintain privacy online.