The Premier League has won a “game-changing” High Court order preventing people in the UK from watching pirated live streams of League games for the 2017/18 season.
Following the news, Internet Service Providers (ISPs) will be expected to up their game in preventing football fans from accessing illegal streams online, which have been growing increasingly common in recent years with the rise of Kodi boxes and other open-source media players that can be easily manipulated to stream copyrighted content.
Commenting on the ruling, a spokesperson for the Premier League, said: “the protection of our copyright, and the investment made by our broadcast partners, is hugely important to the Premier League and the future health of English football.”
“This blocking order is a game-changer in our efforts to tackle the supply and use of illicit streams of our content.”
“It will allow us to quickly and effectively block and disrupt the illegal broadcast of Premier League football via any means, including so called ‘pre-loaded’ Kodi boxes.”
The Premier League has also been cracking down on unauthorised broadcasts of matches in pubs and bars in recent weeks.
A report in The Liverpool Echo suggests that as many as 22 British pubs found to have been illegally broadcasting Premier League games have been successfully challenged with legal action.
The Premier League has reportedly recouped as much as £218,000 in costs in what a spokesperson has described as the group’s “biggest ever copyright protection programme.”
They added that the programmes “will continue in 2017/18 with pub investigations and legal actions.”
It is important for an organisation like the Premier League to not only protect its intellectual property (IP) but to maintain and enforce any IP infringement it suspects has taken place. Once IP infringement has been identified, it is imperative that organisations respond in a fast and effective manner in order to prevent any deemed acceptance of the IP infringement or ultimately the loss of the IP right itself.
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