Premier League picks DLA Piper for IP clash with pubs

Premier League picks <a class=DLA Piper for IP clash with pubs” /> DLA Piper has scored the lead role acting for the FA Premier League in a dispute with a group of UK pubs over the broadcasting of football?matches. The outcome is likely to decide the future of football broadcasting.

The Premier League has taken the publicans to court over the use of foreign broadcasting services to avoid paying UK licence fees to show Premier League football matches in pubs.

The case was heard last week in front of Mr Justice Kitchin.?The?Premier League has argued that pubs showing matches without paying the licence fee are infringing its IP rights.

It claims that, because BSkyB has bought the broadcasting rights, anyone who wants to show the matches publicly must either have a commercial agreement with BSkyB or pay the licence. The Premier League’s business model is based on the sale of exclusive rights to broadcast matches, with deals worth more than £1bn.

DLA Piper partner Simon Levine is leading the litigation effort for the Premier League, which is facing a battle on all sides to maintain its IP, as clips and matches appear on websites across the world.

Orchard Brayton Graham is advising the pubs. The firm?previously?acted for Michael Baigent and Richard Leigh in the Da Vinci Code IP case against Dan Brown. The Premier League has spared no expense on building its legal team, bringing on board five barristers. Leading IP chambers 8 New Square has a silk on each side.

DLA Piper has instructed James Mellor QC of 8 New Square, with Charlotte May and James White from the same chambers and Nick Green?QC?and?Aiden Robertson from Brick Court Chambers.

Orchard has instructed Martin Howe QC of 8 New Square, along with Andrew Norris?and?Thomas St Quentin from IP set Hogarth Chambers.