Donald MacInnes: Time for Barclays and the Premier League to get a sense of humour
Donald MacInnes writes Tales from the Water Cooler, which can be found every Saturday on page 2 of i. And, although a financial near-imbecile, he writes a weekly column in The Independent’s Money section, also on Saturdays. He writes regularly on a broad range of subjects in i’s Freeview section and occasionally fills in on Simon Kelner’s daily column when emotionally up to it. @DonaldAMacInnes
Friday 22 August 2014
This week I shall begin with four words which really wouldn't look out of place in a legitimate, modern newspaper column. Today we will be talking about Intellectual Property and Public Domain. Ooh, I felt a frisson of professionalism there. I should try to be legitimate more often. Or maybe I won't. Either way, off we go.
The Premier League last Saturday began its annual, nine-month paddle through a warm, waist-deep lagoon of lovely money, in the guise of the English football season. The competition, which last May was won by Manchester City, is sponsored (although it may have escaped your attention) by another conglomerate favouring light blue corporate livery, a bank called Barclays. Regular attendees to this Saturday jamboree of ill-combined words will recall that, as a not-shaving-yet youth of some 18 summers (well, it was Glasgow, so use your imagination as regards blue skies, trips to the seaside and actual warmth), I was arrested within a branch of Barclays bank for taking part in a sit-down protest against its business dealings with the apartheid regime in South Africa.
That's neither here nor there in the current storyline, but I only ever got arrested once and I'm proud of it.
Anyway, the people in charge of the Premier League have recently felt the need to warn football fans attending games against filming goals on their phones or tablets and then posting the short snippets of action – or what the young folk are now calling "vines" – to whichever social media site has their ear that week. The suits claim that by "stealing" images of an event which is somehow "owned" by someone else, the fans are infringing the intellectual property of the league. It seems that whatever happens on the actual pitch is the property of the administrators. Only they may broadcast any footage of the game.
Leaving aside the spoilsport aspect of this pronouncement, it strikes me that football fans should be opposing this diktat far more vociferously than they appear to be doing. They have already paid fortunes to see the action (in the case of my team, Arsenal, up to £126, which is a laughable monstrosity) – why the extra burden of limiting what they can and can't record on their mobiles and post to YouTube? Anyway, aren't they, by being in the stadium, part of said intellectual property? At what point do the opposing laws of public domain come into effect? What if the fans take a selfie with the players celebrating a goal in the background? What if their jumping up and down renders the footage they have shot to be a complete mess and far from broadcast quality?
And most importantly of all, aren't the fans as much an intrinsic part of the experience as the two teams and the television cameras? With no fans, there would be no game to broadcast. So, I urge the Premier League and Barclays to get a sense of humour. Or a better mobile contract.
Independent Partners; request a free guide on NISAs from Hargreaves Lansdown
- 1 Scottish independence: Ireland since 1919 is a lesson for Scotland in what a Yes vote means
- 2 Thailand deaths: Pair's bloodied bodies found naked on Koh Tao beach
- 3 Lego breaks out of the toy box and heads for the gallery
- 4 Julian Assange and Edward Snowden join piracy mogul Kim Dotcom’s political campaign in New Zealand
- 5 Daniele Watts: Django Unchained actress detained by Los Angeles police after being mistaken for a prostitute
Daniele Watts: Django Unchained actress detained by Los Angeles police after being mistaken for a prostitute
The political class is doing what Hitler couldn’t – destroying Britain
Scottish independence: Nationalist leader Jim Sillars threatens pro-union companies with 'day of reckoning' after independence
Scottish independence: Yes campaign feels the heat as Alex Salmond's NHS claims come under furious attack
£23m Birmingham cycle scheme is attacked by Tory councillor for not catering to the elderly
Salmond accused of laughing off national debt with ‘what are they going to do: invade?’ joke
iJobs Money & Business
£20 - 24k (Uncapped Commission - £35k Year 1 OTE): Guru Careers: We are seekin...
£20 - 24k + Benefits: Guru Careers: This is a great opportunity for an enthusi...
£280 - £320 per day: Ashdown Group: The Ashdown Group have been engaged by a l...
£400 - £450 Per Day: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: **URGENT CONTRACT ROLE**...
Day In a Page
A first-floor flat with two bedrooms, a spacious reception room and communal grounds in a leafy part of London
A three-bedroom flat with a spacious rootop terrace and balcony, accessed from a private gated courtyard
A Grade II-listed pile with six bedrooms, stables and 39 acres of grounds in Standlake
A two-bedroom flat with boutique hotel-style interiors, close to the foodie haunt of West End Lane
A two-bedroom flat in a beautiful old vicarage, with many original features, close to the city centre
A three-bedroom 16th-century home with an aga kitchen, private gardens and heated outdoor pool, in Hadleigh
A three-bedrom home in sought-after Queen's Gate Mews, with Italian marble-finished bathrooms
Surrounded by glorious countryside in the village of Udimore, sits this impressive four-kiln oast and barn conversion
A five-bedroom house in the picturesque village of Kettlewell, north Yorkshire
An 18th-century former coaching inn with original staircase, open fireplaces and beams throughout
A Grade II-listed Georgian town house with three bedrooms and a south-facing courtyard, near Arundel Castle
Feel on top of the world at this über chic penthouse on the 37th floor of one of Europe’s tallest blocks.
A Grade II-listed Victorian villa with six bedrooms and two further cottages, all with spectacular sea views
A grade II-listed, Georgian cottage with mature 50ft garden, perfect for summer entertaining
A magnificent Georgian pile with turrets, seven bedrooms, a heated pool and four acres of gardens
Fairoak Farm has five bedroom suites, gym, outdoor swimming pool and golf course
Chic two-bedroom river-fronted flat with a private lift that delivers you directly to your home
A spectacular seven-bedroom Tudor pile, once owned by Henry VIII, with 18 acres of land
A seven-bedroom Georgian property previously used as a picturesque wedding venue
A split-level flat in a church conversion with two en suite bedrooms and 1,200sq ft of living space
A three-bedroom bungalow situated behind an impressive stone wall, £645,000
Windsor Castle overlooks this three-bedroom Victorian cottage located on one of Windsor's smartest roads
Chapel House is a former vicarage with nine bedrooms in the beautiful Upper Wye Valley
A five-bedroom B&B and separate owner's accomodation with potential for conversion
Enjoy summer by the Thames in this two double-bedroom converted warehouse in Rotherhithe village
A one-bedroom, luxury apartment with private gym and concierge service in Moorgate
A four-bedroom house in Hermitage Gardens with three reception rooms and landscaped gardens
A seven-bedroom Grade II-listed property with a separate self-contained apartment
A five-bedroom Victorian house with three reception rooms and galleried landing, £695,000
A six-bedroom farmhouse with five acres of land in a former cloth-making village
A secluded seven-bedroom detached house with large private garden, £490,000
A three-bedroom cottage overlooking Sarratt village green with open fires and solid oak floors
A three-bedroom maisonette flat in a Grade I-listed, Georgian townhouse in a sought-after location
A one-bedroom apartment located within a private gated development, north of Turnham Green
Look forward to a brighter future at two-bedroom Sunny Cottages, ideal for Londoners looking to downsize
A three-bedroom red-brick cottage with outbuildings and pretty gardens, £200,000
This three-bedroom flat within a former textile factory spans the corner of the fourth floor and has a balcony