Where you can't watch football online

Barry Collins
6 Nov 2012

A press release arrives from the BPI, the zealous defenders of copyright holders. It has contributed to a new website - The Content Map - a portal for "British digital content services" that  is "encouraging UK online consumers to explore more than 150 authorised websites and platforms offering films, TV programmes, music, video games, e-books and sports broadcasts". Because the reason people turn to file-sharing sites is because they've never heard of LoveFilm and iPlayer...

Anyway, being a footy fan, I head straight to the Sports section, eager to find out about all the legal ways I can watch the beautiful game live online. "Click on your favourite sport below and see the different ways for you to watch online," the website implores, which sounds just the ticket.

And then I look at the four websites listed under football: the official sites of the Premier League, the FA Cup, the UEFA Champions League and the Europa League. The first two show no live football whatsoever, and the second two only deliver live streams via partners such as Sky, ITV and ESPN. The aforementioned Sky, which shows more live online football than any other broadcaster in this country, isn't listed.

If the rights holders can't even point us to legitimate streams of their own content, is it any wonder that people turn to file-sharing services and iffy foreign TV feeds?

Read more about: