Sports Broadcasters Make Case For International IP Rights Protection 30/09/2014 by Catherine Saez, Intellectual Property Watch 2 Comments Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)On the side of the World Intellectual Property Organization General Assembly last week, sports and entertainment broadcasters held an event to highlight the challenges they are facing in the digital world, in particular unauthorised retransmission of live events. The Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) are not broadcasters but they do invest money in developing broadcasting technology, the UEFA representative said, for example an array of different cameras covering the action during football games. Sport fans, he said, are “the lifeblood of all sports.” Digital piracy poses several challenges to football and sport, he said, and deprives sport’s partners of viewers. It also weakens the message that the UEFA wants and needs to communicate, from brand image to social policies, campaigns and principles such as respect, anti-match-fixing, and anti-racism, he said. The live nature of sport means that the damage suffered is immediate, he said. Advances in technology has worsened the problem he added, explaining that the limitations of internet in the early 2000s meant that the quality of image was poor and transmission unreliable. International organisations such as the UEFA do not have the legal tool to address online piracy of retransmissions, he said, as there is no legal tool that works across borders. The primary tool that is used is notice and takedown, which is difficult to implement, he said, adding that there needs to be an effective framework to provide the necessary tools to take action. WIPO member states have been negotiating a treaty on broadcasters’ rights for years, but it has been seen as a priority issue at the 22-30 September General Assembly. Members this week have been considering the possibility of agreeing to hold a diplomatic conference – a final treaty negotiation – on the broadcasting treaty in 2016. Another speaker, from Televisa, describing the company as a Mexican media company, the largest in Latin America and the first of the Spanish-speaking world, also contended that new business models are needed as new technologies brought new legal needs. Over a period of six months, over 49,000 search links to infringing sites showing Televisa’s content were removed he said. If there is no updated legal framework, he said, “We are in the hands of pirates.” He noted other treaties have updated the protection of authors, performers and producers, but broadcasters have not benefitted from such an update as yet. A speaker from Caracol Radio in Colombia concurred. Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Related Catherine Saez may be reached at email@example.com."Sports Broadcasters Make Case For International IP Rights Protection" by Intellectual Property Watch is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.