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Soccer org hits out at YouTube

U.K.'s Football Association calls for clips to be removed

LONDON — British soccer authority, the Football Association, is concerned that clips from English Premier League games on video-sharing Websites like YouTube.com could devalue future TV rights deals.

The FA has ordered YouTube to pull down clips of Premier League matches, according to a report in The Times, which quoted a spokesman for the league saying it has “put YouTube” on notice.

The FA’s total TV rights package for 2007-2010, agreed earlier this year, is worth £1.8 billion ($2.69 billion).

It wants an explanation from YouTube, recently bought by Google, regarding the thousands of copyrighted soccer clips that appear on the site.

To help police video-sharing sites, the FA has hired NetResult, a specialist in protecting rights.

Recently Comedy Central, the U.S. cable web owned by Viacom, demanded that YouTube remove thousands of illegal clips.

However, according to The Times, Viacom may be considering a U-turn.

The conglom told industry blog RedHerring.com: “We want our audience to be able to access our programming on every plat-form and we are interested in having it live on all forms of distribution in ways that protect our talented artists, our loyal customers and our passionate audiences.”

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