Last year, Sports Shorts covered the emergence of the first “live blocking injunctions”, which were obtained by the Premier League both in respect of the final portion of the 2016/17 season (in a test case before the High Court in March 2017) and subsequently in respect of the entire 2017/18 season.
The blocking injunctions require UK internet service providers (“ISPs”, such as Sky, BT, etc.) to block specified providers of copyright infringing streams of Premier League matches effectively on a ‘live’ basis. This is achieved using relatively new technology developed specially for the purpose of detecting and blocking of infringing streams on a near-live basis, something that was not previously possible or practical.
In recent weeks, UEFA has followed in the footsteps of the Premier League, with a successful application to the High Court for a similar injunction requiring the same ISPs to block, or at least impede, access by their customers to streaming servers which deliver infringing live streams of UEFA Competition matches to UK consumers.
The application was heard by Mr Justice Arnold, the same judge who heard, and granted, the Premier League’s applications last year. In a brief judgment of only 15 paragraphs, the judge granted the injunction, reasoning as follows: