How France is tackling sports piracy


Smaïn Guennad and Louis De Gaulle

How France is tackling sports piracy

Mehaniq /

Following legislative changes to empower sports rights owners, Smaïn Guennad and Louis De Gaulle of De Gaulle Fleurance explain the current legal framework in France.

Due to the value of audiovisual rights to sports events, broadcasting has become a leading part of the sports industry’s income. However, premium sports content has a short-term value since the main economic value is consumed once the event is over.

In view of this, piracy of sport events is the main concern for organisers and their licensees (ie, the broadcasters). The issues raised by Hadopi (the French authority in charge of fighting piracy) linked to audiovisual sports content piracy are the following:

  • More than 11 million web users each month;
  • A revenue loss of €1.03 billion for the audiovisual and sport sectors;
  • A tax revenue loss of €332 million for the French state and;
  • A reduction of 2,650 jobs for the sectors concerned.

To fight against any technological forms of online piracy, French law provides sport event organisers and their licensees with a certain level of protection, but higher standards of protection are needed and currently being implemented.

De Gaulle Fleurance, piracy, sports, rights owners, legal framework, broadcasting, civil liability, Paris Court of Appeal, ISPs, infringement