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BeIN Media hails US government reports slamming BeoutQ

Middle East pay TV operator BeIN Media has hailed the US government’s publication of two reports condemning pirate broadcaster BeoutQ.

Last week the he Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) published  the 2019 Special 301 Report, which identifies governments that fail to protect and enforce intellectual property around the world and  the 2018 Notorious Markets List, which names and shames prominent piracy and counterfeiting marketplaces that cause significant financial losses for US rights-holders and legitimate businesses.

The USTR Special Report placed Saudi Arabia on the priority watch list,for its failure to address IP concerns and the deterioration of IP protection and enforcement within its borders. BeIN Media hailed the fact that the report specifically singled-out beoutQ and Arabsat, the Saudi-based satellite provider that is distributing the illegal service:

“BeoutQ, an illicit service for pirated content whose signal is reportedly carried by Saudi Arabia-based satellite provider Arabsat, continues to be widely available in Saudi Arabia and throughout the Middle East and Europe. While Saudi officials have confirmed the illegal nature of BeoutQ’s activities and claim to be addressing this issue by seizing BeoutQ set-top boxes, such devices nevertheless continue to be widely available and are generally unregulated in Saudi Arabia. Saudi Arabia also has not taken sufficient steps to address the purported role of Arabsat in facilitating BeoutQ’s piracy activities,” said the report.

The Notorious Markets List named BeoutQ as one of 33 online marketplaces on its blacklist. The list named the streaming and broadcast piracy outfit as “an example of a single entity pirating content in multiple ways” including suspected  “satellite and online piracy, as well as supporting piracy devices and related services such as apps and illicit streaming devices”.

Referencing the US reports and  a separate question raised in the UK parliament about BeoutQ,  Yousef Al-Obaidly, CEO of beIN Media Group said: “These latest developments in the global fight against beoutQ are hugely significant, as they represent a critically important public call by the US Government – and a direct call for the UK Government – to intervene with the Saudi Government to stop the continued daily theft of the commercial rights of the most famous and valuable brands in US and UK sports and entertainment. With the European Commission also fully aware of the matter and the World Trade Organization having established a dispute settlement panel to investigate it, the weight of the international community is coming to bear on Saudi Arabia to stop breaking the rule of law and to end its safe haven for piracy that has now spread across the Middle East, Europe, the US and around the world.”