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SBD Global/July 17, 2013/Media

EPL Secures Blocking Order Against Illegal Live Football Streaming Web Site

The EPL secured a judgement in the high court requiring the six main U.K.-based Internet service providers to block access to FirstRowSports, one of the biggest illegal live football-streaming sites in the U.K. The high court ruled that FirstRowSports was acting jointly with third party streaming services to communicate to the public live EPL matches, a breach of EPL contract. Section 97A of the Copyright and Patents Act of 1988 has been used previously by music and film industries to secure protection from illegal streaming sites, such as Pirate Bay, but this is the first time that a sporting body has sought an order blocking a site that infringes its copyright (EPL).

COPYRIGHT INFRINGEMENT: The London DAILY MIRROR reported a judge said the orders were justified as the operators of the "very popular" website were making millions of pounds from copyright infringement. The judge said FirstRow was "profiting from infringement on a large scale" by making match broadcasts available "to persons who are not entitled to view them either because they have not subscribed to the broadcaster's service, or because the broadcaster has only been licensed by FAPL for a different territory." The injunction is against the U.K.'s six main retail Internet service providers -- British Sky Broadcasting, BT, Everything Everywhere, TalkTalk, Telefonica UK and Virgin Media (DAILY MIRROR, 7/16).
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