by Carlo Longino

Filed Under:
media, media restrictions, rugby

afp, ap, reuters

News Outlets Decide Not To Give Rugby World Cup Free Publicity

from the have-it-your-way dept

Just earlier today we had a post on how the NFL still thinks it can tell news organizations how they can do their job, in spite of fair use, and well, logic and reason. The Rugby World Cup kicks off Friday, and its organizers are involved in a similar spat with media groups covering the event. Back in April, organizers tried to put restrictions on the number of photos news outlets could publish online, and also how they were published (lest anything cover up a sponsor's logo). Major media outlets, including the AP, Reuters and AFP aren't playing ball, though, and are boycotting the event until the dispute is resolved. As much as the World Cup organizers would like to think they don't care, they depend on widespread media coverage and the free publicity it generates to drive their money machines. They say they're acting to protect companies that have paid for certain broadcasting rights, but what they're really trying to protect are the huge fees these companies have paid. They seem to think that letting news outlets print photos online threaten things like TV rights, but it would seem that the opposite is true. By reducing the amount of news coverage for the event -- which acts as publicity -- they're going to hurt the amount of interest people have in it. In turn, perhaps they won't be nearly as interested to follow it on TV or radio or anywhere else rightsholders have paid to deliver it. That's what really threatens their revenues, not the fact that people can go online and see photos from matches.

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  • identicon
    RandomThoughts, 6 Sep 2007 @ 3:02pm

    To think that the NFL's position and the Rugby World Cup's position is the same isn't credible.

    The NFL can tell the media what to do. Obviously, the Rugby World Cup can't.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Sanguine Dream, 6 Sep 2007 @ 3:13pm


      You're right the situation isn't the same but the reaction could be the same.

      The NFL may have control over how their material is covered by the media but the media outlets have just as much control over what they cover. I wonder what the NFL would do if FOX, ABC, NBC, CBS, and ESPN were the ONLY outlets that covered NFL action. Yes those five would dominate the revenue but the NFL would no doubt suffer from such a market shrink.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Eric the Grey, 6 Sep 2007 @ 3:09pm

    Boycott them all

    The media outlets need to do the same to the NFL. Eventually, they'll notice, and change their tune.

    It seems cheaper than court battles.


    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    TheDock22, 6 Sep 2007 @ 3:42pm

    What the heck is rugby?

    Just kidding, but bad move on the Rugby World Cup's part if they want more support. I think this is silly ESPECIALLY when it comes to sports. Who wants to view a bunch of photos online rather than watch the real game? And the people that do want the photos would probably just read the results in the paper anyway.

    When will TV realize they need to integrate more with the Internet rather than refuse to move forward? There is nothing wrong with giving a little highlight clip or picture online, since in the end give me the big screen to watch my rugby. ;)

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 6 Sep 2007 @ 4:17pm



    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Vincent Clement (profile), 6 Sep 2007 @ 4:18pm

    Who cares about pro-sport organizations any ways? Go watch a minor league team play. It's cheaper and more fun.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Witty Nickname, 6 Sep 2007 @ 6:23pm


    I'll admit to watching NFL. WTF was up with the audio feed during the first quarter of the kickoff game tonight?

    First it was silent, then the commentary was in Spanish for half the first quarter.

    Was it just my market, a friend of mine had the same problem. You would think with all the money NBC paid to have the first game of the season you would think their broadcast would be ready.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    RandomThoughts, 6 Sep 2007 @ 7:09pm

    Admit to watching the NFL? Like thats a bad thing? If thats the case, I want to license rights to replay the games on (in?) Second Life, then techies can watch it.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

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