Legal Issues

by Mike Masnick




Major League Baseball Still Claiming Ownership Of Game Data

from the can't-copyright-facts dept

Good old Major League Baseball. Back in October we wrote about how they were suddenly claiming that any website that broadcast real-time game info was violating their copyrights and were required to buy a license. Most people laughed this off and pointed to a 1997 ruling against the NBA, where Motorola was told they were allowed to send live game information to pagers. Now, Wired News is running a followup to the original story where MLB claims they know all about the Motorola decision, but believe it only applies to scores. Any other real-time info is their own. Again, I'll ask the same question I asked when this first came up. If I'm at the game, and I use my mobile phone to report what I see, is that considered "rebroadcasting" the game? What if I'm posting the information to a web site? From MLB's description, it certainly sounds like it. We've discussed this before (just a few posts ago, in fact), but you can't copyright facts, no matter how much you'd like to. If I see something with my own eyes and report it, I shouldn't require a "license" from Major League Baseball.

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  1. icon
    Mike (profile), 2 Dec 2003 @ 6:21am

    Re: same old same old

    It's a bit off-topic, but I fail to see how a salary cap would help. Did you watch the playoffs this year? They were stunning and exciting, and it was the small market team that came out ahead.

    Meanwhile, it's not the salary cap that's the issue, but how teams spend their money. Lots of small market teams received payouts from the Yankees this year, who went *way* over the luxury tax level. Instead of spending that money on players, it's being pocketed. It has nothing to do with a salary cap and plenty to do with bad management.

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