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BeIN Media enlists tech companies’ support in piracy battle with BeoutQ

BeIN Media has intensified its campaign against Saudi Arabia-based pirate service BeoutQ, which has targeted BeIN Media’s base by offering illicit transmissions of premium sports content.

Following BeoutQ’s transmission of the first English Premier League and Ligue 1 football matches of the new season, BeIN Media has enlisted the support of content security providers Cisco and Nagra and transmission services provider Overon, all of whom have confirmed that BeOutQ is being distributed by Saudi satellite operator Arabsat.

According to BeIN Media, BeoutQ illegally broadcast the first 10 English Premier League matches kicking off with Manchester United v Leicester City, and six of the 10 opening games of Ligue 1, including PSG v Caen.

BeoutQ has also promoted coverage of upcoming matches from Spain’s La Liga and Germany’s Bundesliga, according to BeIN Media, which holds the rights to most top-tier football in the MENA region.

BeIN Media cited evidence from the three companies to show that Arabsat satellites have been transmitting BeoutQ’s pirate channels.

BeIN Media, which maintains that BeoutQ is part of a concerted anti-Qatar campaign backed by the Saudi Arabian authorities, said that Arabsat had continued to refuse to axe broadcasts from the pirate service, event though it had routinely switched off pirate operations in accordance with international law before the Saudi-led blockade against Qatar.

Saudi Arabia is the largest shareholder in Arabsat, which is jointly owned by the Arab League governments.

Tom Keaveny, managing director of beIN Media Group, MENA said, “The political games being played by Arabsat, BeoutQ and its Saudi backers in stealing our content have consequences that affect the future of world sport, not just BeIN Sports. That is why the international sports community – from FIFA to UEFA, Formula 1 to world tennis, together with a host of other global broadcasters – have all taken a stand and publicly condemned this Saudi-based piracy. BeoutQ and its Saudi backers seem to think they can operate beyond the reproach of the rule of law and the international norms that everyone else respects.”