Day: October 4, 2011

The People’s Republic Of Elland Road

What on earth is happening at Leeds? I was at Elland Road last Saturday among 600 Pompey fans and the change in atmosphere since last season was palpable. Last year, the atmosphere impressed with fans in good voice and scarves whirling. This year, though, Elland Road is not a happy place, evidenced by the draconian, 1980s style crowd control methods and the strangely messianic images of the club’s chairman in his seat flashed onto the big screen above our heads. It somehow felt we had intruded onto someone else’s battlefield. Ken Bates seems to be stirring up something of a furore among the Leeds faithful since somehow finding the cash to name himself owner of the club at the end of last season. In a flurry of accusations regarding, “The scaremongering arising out of the football governance enquiry” in The Guardian last May, the suggestively pictured Mr Bates did the right thing and married his name to the club. All very well and good you might think – at least he’s made an honest club out of Leeds and maybe now it will be a case of happily ever after. Since then Mr Bates has seemed keen to stamp his authority on the marriage. He is unhappy with media intrusion into the matter and, having taken a side-swipe at the already banned Guardian’s David Conn, ‘the ‘international enemy of Leeds United’...

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The Premier League vs Karen Murphy: A No Score Draw

The result, in the end, was something approaching an honorable draw, which both sides of this particular argument will now likely try to claim as a victory. The Premier League vs Karen Murphy had gone to the European Court of Justice to try and determine how the concept of a single European market weighs up against the country by country rights selling system which, amongst many, many others, the Premier League uses to sell coverage of its matches. The court found in Murphy’s case, in stating that the imposition of national borders to sell rights on a territory-by-territory basis contravened EU laws on free trade. Murphy, however, will probably not – along with other publicans, who will likely have been watching the case play out with considerable interest – be able to continue to show the broadcasts in her pub without legal , because the court also ruled that the Premier League does hold the copyright over its own logo and anthem (news of the existence of which may well have been news to many of us) and that she doesn’t have permission to broadcast those. There may well be many pubs that will begin (or continue) to broadcast foreign feeds to their customers, and it may now only be a matter of time before the first case for a breach of the Premier League’s intellectual copyright ends up in a British...

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