Wednesday, September 5, 2007

NFL's TV Rights Holders Exempt From 45-Second Web Rule

The NFL is exempting its TV rights holders -- Fox, CBS, ESPN and NBC -- from the league’s rule prohibiting media outlets form posting more than 45 seconds a day of online video involving team personnel shot at team facilities, according to Fisher, Kaplan & Ourand of SPORTSBUSINESS JOURNAL. The AP Sports Editors have “unsuccessfully pushed” to have the 45-second rule relaxed, and the league's four TV partners have “argued that their rights fees -- averaging more than $3[B] a year over the life of the contracts -- should buy them more latitude for online video" than non-partners. A senior network exec said, “Highlight clips are available all over the place in spots like YouTube, Brightcove and so forth. Right now, we’re really not best positioned to help the NFL control distribution of online video. We shouldn’t force people to go hunting, as it tends to fragment out your audience.” NFL Dir of Corporate Communications Brian McCarthy indicated that the 45-second rule has "not ever applied to the four TV networks." But Fisher, Kaplan & Ourand note the networks will continue to be prohibited from showing game highlights on their Web sites

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