The Dirty Dozen

Twelve Humberside pubs have had their licences suspended by Hull City Council. What heinous act have they committed that has forced the council to take such drastic action? They’ve been caught illegally showing football via the internet*. That’s right, they've been allowing punters to watch football in a pub. The filthy bastards. How dare they. I for one will sleep more safely knowing that the prompt action of Hull CC has saved possibly hundreds of lives.

Is it only me that thinks this is an overreaction? Yes, they were allegedly caught breaking the law. Although, it has to be said, I doubt you will find many people marching through the streets demanding stricter enforcement of this particular piece of legislation. It is, after all, really just a trade dispute. And the fact that the police are getting more involved in this matter is just laughable.

But ok, the law is the law. And Hull CC are conducting a review of the pubs involved. But what has happened to innocent till proven guilty? Is it really fair that the pubs are forced to close whilst this review takes place? If there was a possible risk to the public, it might be understandable. However, all I see here is protection of Sky and ESPN’s monopoly.

*via a "Slingbox" device.£200 from a shop in Radcliffe, if you're interested.


NAM said…
I have occasionally frequented a pub that showed football from a Middle-Eastern channel. The half-time discussion in Arabic between two animated pundits wearing ties from 1979 was better than most of the matches, but I always felt uneasy that the foundations of civilisation were crumbling around me as I watched.

Anyway, surely this is a civil matter between Sky or ESPN and the landlord? I don't see what it's got to do with the council.
Penny said…
This seems very harsh. Surely the council should only take action if the offending pubs are charged and found guilty? And even then, as you say, is it really a matter for the licensing auhorities?
Tandleman said…
I see a number of pubs around here using Italian Sky cards, maybe from this mob:

Are these legal? Somehow I doubt it. Will they be closed soon? I'm not telling on them is all I know.
Captain Jack said…
Let's be honest.No one gives a shit where the footy in the pub comes from.
Cooking Lager said…
Would an internet Cafe be closed down if the punters were using the PC's to access

Or would a pub face sanction if it offered free wifi and I put my netbook on the table and watched the match?
Tandleman said…
Well you might not Cap'n but the FA sure does!
Anonymous said…
I could show my arse in the Swan & Duck and the council wouldn't bat an eyelid.But show foreign football and they come down on you like a ton of bricks.

What happened to the customer is always right?
Tyson said…
Blimey, those Italian Sky cards are expensive. No wonder everyone is swapping to internet viewing. If pubs are showing Sky games illegally, I can understand that Sky might be less than happy.

However, most of the time, these pubs are showing games that are not being broadcast here. You can hardly then blame the pub for adhereing to the law of supply and demand.

An interesting question. As a man, I know you will undertsand if I compare it with porn. Sitting alone in your socks in a darkened bedroom, the law alllows you to watch French tarts shagging.

However, if you were to show the same French tarts shagging to people in the pub, you could be committing an offence. Same with the footie.
Rupert Murdoch said…
Sky and ESPN are just robbing bastards who try to screw the pubs out of more and more.if the match isn't even on Sky etc why can't pubs be allowed to show Albanian football?

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