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Press Release




“My message is don’t do it because it is illegal for a reason, and if I catch you you’re going to be in trouble.” That’s the message from Joseph Parker ahead of his first WBO world heavyweight boxing title defence on Saturday night.

The heavyweight champion says he takes piracy personally and is urging supporters and boxing fans to think twice.

“My views on piracy and illegal streaming; I think it’s illegal for a reason and I feel like there’s a lot of people working hard behind the scenes to get the fights going and showing things on TV… when you’re doing that sort of stuff you’re taking away from those that are working hard. Everyone has families that they have to feed and pay for and that’s why I feel it shouldn’t be done.”

SKY CEO John Fellet says SKY will have a team monitoring the web and social media for piracy on Saturday night.

“Piracy or illegal streaming is no different to walking into a store and grabbing a physical item; it still represents the value of a lot of hard work by a lot of people. It may be fun, it may be exciting, but at the end of the day you are taking money out of the athletes, the actors and the production people and even people here in this building.”

Mr Fellet says SKY would rather not have to take legal action but the company takes the matter seriously and will act against those who illegally stream the fight.

“We’ve been quite successful of late in monitoring Facebook pages and YouTube and finding these streams. We fingerprint the signal so we can track back to who it goes to, and take legal action after that. Right now, we are taking civil actions and using the courts to make our point. In other countries around the world they take greater criminal action on these types of events.”

For SKY to produce the world heavyweight title event it takes around 400 people including call centre staff, camera and studio operators, presenters and support staff.

SKY Director of Sport Richard Last says piracy has a wide-ranging impact and affects the livelihoods of all SKY staff and contractors.

“You need to be able to get some revenue in, to pay for all these things, and if people stop paying for it then we won’t be able to put the events on… ultimately these events won’t be available for anybody to watch.”

Parker’s fight will be available on FAN PASS and can be purchased online for a one-off cost. Last says SKY has “listened to people who said they did not wish to subscribe to SKY Sport but wanted the ability to buy Joseph’s fight and other major sporting events.”

He says SKY hopes that people will use this rather than illegally stream.