Sky cracks down on illegal sport viewing

Licensees and showing live sport

With one of the biggest sporting events in the world taking place this summer, it’s more important than ever to make sure you are abiding by all the licensing rules associated with showing live sport.

A Premier League spokesperson released a statement encouraging licensees to be wary of suppliers who ‘mislead and attempt to rip people off,’ by claiming that broadcasting sport using viewing services other than Sky are legal.

With the upcoming world cup, licensees should be completely sure they are safe from scrutiny long before the tournament. The safest way of having live sport events shown in your venue is to gain a legitimate commercial subscription from Sky Sports and BT Sport.

Sky Pint Glass

Legitimate Sky Business commercial subscribers will have a pint glass emblem in the bottom corner of the screen in their venue. This identifies the venue and licensee has paid the relevant fees and gained the permissions required to show live sport from Sky.

Any licensee who operates without a commercial subscription agreement is committing a crime. Each offence is subject to a £5,000 fine, with the possibility of a criminal conviction, or the loss of a license, insurers will not indemnify you for losing your license if it is due to you breaking the law.

Licensees are also putting themselves at risk of civil action for recovery of subscription revenue, as well as the associated legal fees of this kind of action. There has been many cases where licensees that have been discovered or reported for this kind of illegal behaviour and suffered damaging fines and legal action, so make sure your business is fully compliant.

Fines for non-compliance

A Liverpool bar was recently subject to a copyright infringement case after showing Premier League football from an unauthorised Danish satellite channel. This venue was hit by a massive £65,000 fine after the High Court found them guilty.

Another venue, the First National Wine Bar, was also was hit with a fine for £65,000 after it was discovered to be showing live Premier League football using the digital channel Al Jazeera.

It’s not just the illegal broadcast of sporting events that can land you in trouble, a licensee in Wigan was forced to pay over £1,500 in fines after failing to return a Sky Viewing Card.

If you are unsure

To confirm that you are on the correct package, you can contact your provider.

Insurance during the World Cup

Making sure you’re properly covered in busy times is of paramount importance to any business or licensee. Your local sports club, working men’s club or social club will need comprehensive coverage to ensure that your insurance is robust enough to deal with the busier and extended opening hours.

Club Insure provide personalised policies that are agreed with each individual business we work with, earning us a reputation as the leading broker in our industry. To get in touch, use our contact form.