Formula 1 governing body the F1A has entered the dispute between BeIN Media and Saudi Arabia-based pirate streamer BeoutQ, which has targeted its exclusive sports rights by illegally broadcasting content including the World Cup and Champions League football.
“It has come to our attention that certain Formula 1 content from the 2018 FIA Formula One Championship has been illegally transmitted by the channel known as beoutQ operating primarily within the MENA region,” the sport’s governing body said in a statement provided to The Independent online newspaper.
The F1A said it would take “appropriate action” to challenge infringement of its intellectual property.
BeIN Media Group has been waging a campaign to draw attention to the activities of BeoutQ, accusing the Saudi government of supporting the pirate group as part of its trade offensive against Qatar and pointing out that BeoutQ’s signals have been broadcast by state-backed Saudi satellite operator Arabsat.
“The pirate channel BeoutQ is not a small outfit operating out of someone’s bedroom. This is piracy on a massive commercial scale with multimillion dollar funding underpinning,” said Tom Keaveny, managing director of beIN Media Group.
In may, BeIN Media condemned Arabsat’s sponsorship of a an anti-piracy conference in Dubai, citing Arabast’s facilitation of BeoutQ’s service.