Category Archives: Sports

NFL v. Comcast: Expect this on the Internet

nfl.gif This is what we can expect to see on the Internet if the duopoly is left to its own devices:
NFL Network is filing a complaint with the Federal Communications Commission against cable TV giant Comcast in the latest legal wrangling between the two.

The network announced Thursday it had served Comcast with the required 10-day notice of its intent to file a complaint. NFL Network is accusing the nation’s largest cable operator of discriminatory and anticompetitive treatment in violation of the Cable Act of 1992.

The two sides have been feuding over Comcast’s decision to place NFL Network on a premium sports tier that customers must pay extra to receive. NFL Network sued Comcast in October 2006 over the move.

NFL Network filing complaint with FCC against Comcast AP, 17 April 2008

The NFL Channel and the Amazon Channel. Whatever the duopoly thinks it can milk for extra revenue by putting it on a premium channel, that’s what they’ll do.

Defenders of the duopoly may claim they’re doing it to protect copyright, but note that in this case the content provider doesn’t even want it.


AT&T, Texas Football, and Legislators

eddierodriguez.jpg AT&T tried to impress Texas legislators by streaming the football game in high definition:
“I’d never seen a football game on a big screen like that. It didn’t look very good.”

—Rep. Eddie Rodriguez, D-Austin, quoted in UNDER THE DOME Most Austin reps skipped football game – and lobby party, W. Gardner Selby, Austin American-Statesman, Saturday, December 01, 2007

I’m not sure AT&T wanted that kind of reaction to watching a Texas football team in Austin, the capital of the second most populous state. The local cableco in Austin, Time Warner, didn’t have the game (Dallas Cowboys and Green Bay Packers), which was on the NFL Network, which has a deal with AT&T. Most legislators didn’t even show up to watch. Interesting, considering that legislators and regulators are the real audience of the duopoly.


Global Media Consolidation

mediabrands.jpg In case you thought media ownership in increasingly fewer hands was a uniquely U.S. problem, here’s a handy graphic illustrating its worldwide scope. There are links to the research behind it.


Has YOUR Free Speech Been Infringed?

As the law firm for an English soccer league puts it in a letter about their lawsuit against google:

YouTube class action lawsuit: Has YOUR copyright been infringed?, by Donna Bogatin, Digital Markets, zdnet blogs, May 5th, 2007

Well, I write books, so I should be concerned about copyright.

What else do they say?

The Defendants (Google, YouTube) have willfully violated the intellectual property rights that were created and made valuable by the investment – sometimes the life-long investment – of creativity, time, talent, energy, and resources of content producers other than the Defendants. The complaint asserts several legal claims against the Defendants, including direct copyright infringement, contributory copyright infringement, and vicarious copyright infringement.
Well, who could argue with that? Continue reading