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SBD Global/August 19, 2014/Media

BeIN Sports Subscribers Face Live English Premier League Lock Out

BeIN Sports may cut the number of live English Premier League games it shows this season "as it struggles to battle piracy issues," according to Alexander Cornwell of GULF NEWS. BeIN "owns the TV rights for the EPL for 23 countries from Iran to Morocco." The sports network advertises that "it shows all games live and exclusive, however, on Saturday it issued a notice on its website streaming service advising that a number of games, including Arsenal vs Crystal Palace, would not be shown." BeIN Sports anchor Richard Keys tweeted on Wednesday that “not all games” over the past weekend would be shown due to a test period to satisfy the EPL. But he also added that, "To the best of my knowledge guys we are now 'secure'" (GULF NEWS, 8/18). In Abu Dhabi, Lindsay Carroll wrote subscribers who paid Dh500 ($136) for beIN Connect logged in at 6pm to watch the live stream of football and "found that it was unavailable." The Qatari network's problems are thought to stem from the EPL itself, "which is unhappy that beIN Sports broadcasts are widely pirated" throughout the U.K., despite the network's efforts to improve its encryption. However, "because beIN Sports routinely fails to respond to customer complaints or media inquiries, the network's own explanation is not known" (THE NATIONAL, 8/17).
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