The Premier League wants the UK’s biggest ISPs to block streaming site First Row Sports which provides access to live streams of football matches for free.
The site, which describes itself as ‘a sport and tv stream agregator [sic]’ claims to not host any streams itself. First Row Sports can be used to stream live Premier League games online without having to have a Sky Sports (and now BT Sport) subscription.
“In case that you think the sources violate some laws (IP, sexually explicit materials etc.), contact responsible websites, where the broadcast occurs… Firstrow.bz is NOT responsible. There are no streams or videos on this website. Just links added by users.”
The Premier League has yet to respond to repeated requests for comment and clarification. We understand from industry sources that the organisation intends to get a court order. This would mean that ISPs such as BT, Sky, Virgin Media and TalkTalk would be legally required to block access to First Row Sports.
Historically, as with the court orders handed out for blocks applied to the likes of The Pirate Bay and Fenopy, ISPs will need 14 days notice to react to any court order. It’s understood that the Premier League wants a ban in place for the start of the next season, meaning the court order will have to be obtained and sent out to ISPs within a month for this to happen.
The 2013/14 Premier League season will kick off on Saturday, August 17.