josh Posted December 7, 2012 Share Posted December 7, 2012 Sports fans can pursue US antitrust case over programs http://sports.yahoo.com/news/1-sports-fans-pursue-us-antitrust-case-over-181847266--nhl.html * Subscribers claimed to overpay for TV, Internet packages * Judge says subscribers plausibly alleged harm * MLB, NHL, Comcast, DirecTV, several teams were sued NEW YORK, Dec 5 (Reuters) - A federal judge on Wednesday allowed sports fans to pursue a lawsuit accusing Major League Baseball, the National Hockey League and various networks of antitrust violations in how they package games for broadcast on television or the Internet. "BLACKOUT" AGREEMENTS The case arose from what the subscribers said were anticompetitive "blackout" agreements between service providers such as Comcast and DirecTV, sports networks and the leagues. These subscribers contended that if they wanted to watch games from outside their home markets, they were required to buy packages that included all out-of-market games, even if they were interested only in one or a few nonlocal teams. For example, a New York Yankees fan living in Colorado could not pay simply for access to that team's games, but had to buy a product such as the MLB Extra Innings television package. The subscribers sought damages and a halt to arrangements that they said resulted in "reduced output, diminished product quality, diminished choice and suppressed price competition." Other packages at issue are NHL Center Ice for television, and MLB.tv and NHL GameCenter LIVE for the Internet. Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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