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Monday, September 28, 2015
From Meerkat to Periscope: Does Intellectual Property Law Prohibit the Live Streaming of Commercial Sporting Events

On May 2, 2015, American boxing fans tuned into Meerkat and Periscope to watch free live streaming of the Mayweather-Pacquiao championship fight, produced by other sports fans. This phenomena has caused grave concern among some sports entities and their television broadcast partners. If legal, will live streaming eat into the size of their future television audiences?

In a new Columbia Journal of Arts & the Law article (forthcoming Spring of 2016), I discuss the potential impact of live streaming on the commercial sports industry.  I also analyze whether commercial sports enterprises have the legal power to stop live streaming of professional and collegiate sporting events.

Among other things, this article discusses how the NCAA's argument that the First Amendment trumps college athletes' publicity rights in the televised use of their likenesses might actually increase the likelihood that fans in attendance at a sporting event may legally live stream the entire event.

The current version of my upcoming law review article is available for download here.  Thoughts and suggestions are always appreciated.


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