eventos deportivos

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The illegal broadcast online of sports events is widespread, and the audience is often unaware that it is unlawful.

There have been various initiatives aimed at ending these acts. The European Commission (EC) committed to follow up on the European Parliament (EP) proposals to address the challenges facing sports events organizers in the digital environment, and particularly the issues related to the illegal broadcast of sports events. Also, the proposal for a Digital Services Act includes generic mechanisms to end these infringements.

On May 19, to protect the right holders and broadcasters of live sport content, the EP adopted a report requesting that the EC clarify and improve the current legal framework for intellectual property rights regarding live sports events, since these events are not subject to copyright protection under Union law.

The report was adopted by 479 votes to 171 with 40 abstentions. We highlight below the report’s most relevant aspects:

  • A specific regulation is necessary: the EP calls for specific regulation for the rights of sports events’ official organizers and distributors. Some Member States have implemented specific regulations on this matter, but there is not a uniform EU framework. However, the EP considers this a priority, since the exploitation of broadcasting rights is a significant source of income for sports events organizers and distributors, and the illegal broadcast of this content results in losses and reputational damage.
  • Smooth removal of illegal content: the EP calls for a regulation harmonizing, enforcing and securing the obligation to remove the illegal content from the broadcasting platforms immediately. In other words, that illegal broadcasts be disabled as soon as right holders or certified “trusted flaggers” issue their notification and, in any case, no later than 30 minutes from the notification.
  • Guarantees: the EP also calls for content removal to be proportionate, to avoid the excessive or arbitrary blocking of legal content available on the platforms, as well as readily available legal remedies.

It is still necessary to raise consumer awareness, so the report suggests promoting and facilitating access to legal content online. We will pay attention to any developments on this blog.

Authors: Ane Alonso and Paula Conde

This post is also available in: Español

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ane.alonso@cuatrecasas.com

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paula.conde@cuatrecasas.com