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La Liga poised to end illegal streaming services

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Photo Illustration by Rafael Henrique/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)

In 2017, La Liga already took major steps in halting illegal streaming services. The association headed by Javier Tebas incorporated YouTube’s Content ID tool to battle piracy and illegal streaming. This Google technology was intended to make it easier to identify and remove LaLiga EA Sports footage that violates the copyright laws.

The technology has worked to perfection, and a typical example is videos posted on X (formerly Twitter).

Certain times if a video corresponding to a La Liga EA Sports footage is shared on the aforementioned platform, it will be taken down by the technology within hours or days.

The fight against piracy continues, and La Liga are not backing down.

The illegal numbers

LaLiga has located 46,000 different IP’s from all over the world from which top flight and second division games in Spain are being broadcast illegally.  These include other sports such as Formula 1, Tennis and motorcycling.

Javier Tebas poised

LaLiga president Javier Tebas spoke on the issue at a conference on the Fight against Piracy in Sports. The event was held in Valencia.

The president noted: “We have eliminated 58 Android applications, which had had 4 million downloads worldwide, 800,000 in Spain that broadcast free football content in Spain, and all kinds of sporting events. In the Apple environment, there have been a million downloads, of which about 300,000 have been in Spain.”

Regarding mobile phones that have already downloaded those applications to allow illlegal streaming, Javier Tebas said: “That is another of our fights: that those who have them on the downloaded mobile phones already have them and now we have to work to eliminate them.”

“We are talking to Google and other platforms so that they can be located on those mobile phones. If it can be done and is done, for example, for crimes such as child pornography, for intellectual property, which is stealing, they would have to do it as well.”

At the event to combat piracy in sports held in Valencia, Javier Tebas acknowledged that it is much more difficult to cut piracy through Tik Tok. Despite this, the president believes that steps are being taken.

Legally, La Liga cannot close the IP’s for streaming illegal content. Tebas acknowledged: “But we cannot close them, because we lack legislative tools to be able to close those IPs.”

“We are the holders of the rights who have to be technologically prepared to fight piracy and not just to go and cry to the legislator to put an end,” he concluded.

A fight over the years 

In 2018, La Liga announced that a core group of 14 people work closely with the Communication, Audiovisual and Legal departments to form the anti-piracy team of LaLiga.

This is a group which has grown along with the challenges that the volatile environment in today’s world provides them with, meaning demands are always high and never ending.

The head of the department stated back then: “You have have to be alert always from Monday to Sunday, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.”

The fight against piracy arose as a result of Royal Decree Law 4/2015 on April 30, whereby LaLiga are in charge of marketing the rights to exploit the audio-visual content.

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