Copyright and Sky TV
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Released 11 January 2008
Karen Murphy has lost her case after the High Court dismissed an appeal by
her against her conviction for screening a broadcast of live UK Premier League
football matches. The matches were screened via Greece which had the licence to
show the games. The High Court held that it would be wrong to determine whether
a programme included in a broadcasting service was provided from a place in the
UK by reference to the Satellite Broadcasting Directive (93/83EEC) and the cases
decided under that Directive.
A broadcast is protected as a copyright work in accordance with section
1(1)(b), of the Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988 (CDPA).
The Premier League (PL) in the UK owns the intellectual property rights
relating to the screening of the Premiership. Murphy a landlady cancelled its
£6,000-a-year subscription with Sky. Sky is the exclusive licencee to screen
live Premier League football matches in the UK. As is now common in the UK
Murphy paid for a satellite dish, decoder and decoder card which enabled her,
for £800 a year, to receive broadcasts of live Premier League games from Nova, a
Greek television-provider, which was PL's licensee for Greece.
This decision will be of great interest to the licensed trade. The case has
been referred to the EC on competition law which may open up the market in the
Europe. But for now landlords beware!.
Michael Coyle is a
solicitor advocate who specialises in information technology law and
intellectual property law.
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Article Published/Sorted/Amended on Scopulus 2008-02-17 17:20:28 in Legal Articles