Home MobileAndroid LaLiga “Talks to Google” About Deleting Piracy Apps From a Million Phones * TorrentFreak

LaLiga “Talks to Google” About Deleting Piracy Apps From a Million Phones * TorrentFreak

by Maine Bacos

LaLiga Takes on Piracy: Eliminating Pirate Apps and Working with Google

The fight against piracy in the sporting industry continues, and LaLiga, the Spanish top-tier football league, is at the forefront. LaLiga’s president, Javier Tebas, recently highlighted the challenges they face in combatting piracy, particularly in relation to illegal streaming apps.

During the first five days of the new season, LaLiga claimed to have “eliminated” 58 pirate apps that had been downloaded over one million times in Spain alone. Tebas revealed that LaLiga is now in talks with Google to locate these apps on users’ phones, with the aim of removing them from circulation. Tebas compared this approach to the way authorities tackle the distribution of child abuse images, emphasizing that if it can be done for one illegal activity, it should be possible for piracy as well.

LaLiga recently organized an event entitled “Fight Against Piracy in Sporting Events” at the Museum of Arts and Sciences in Valencia. The event was attended by various influential figures, including Víctor Francos Díaz, Spain’s Secretary of State for Sports, and Iban García del Blanco, a Member of the European Parliament.

The issue of piracy in the European Union (EU) was also addressed during the event. Tebas referred to a recent report published by the European Intellectual Property Office, which revealed a 3.3% increase in piracy in the EU in 2022. While the report did not specifically address the IPTV-based piracy affecting LaLiga, it underscored the growing problem of piracy for sports organizations and governments across Europe.

LaLiga’s efforts to combat IPTV piracy services began eight years ago. According to local media reports, the league’s anti-piracy department now detects more than 46,000 IP addresses worldwide that are involved in broadcasting pirated live sports. These numbers are indicative of the scale of the problem faced by LaLiga.

Tebas revealed that during the initial days of the new Spanish football season, LaLiga successfully “eliminated” 58 Android-based piracy apps, believed to have been downloaded by four million users worldwide. About 800,000 of these users are located in Spain, where they utilize the apps to stream pirated football matches. The figures for Apple devices are comparatively smaller, with approximately one million users worldwide, including 300,000 in Spain. These figures highlight the significant number of Spanish users utilizing pirate apps to watch football matches.

However, the terminology used by LaLiga regarding the “elimination” of apps raises some questions. It remains unclear whether the apps were completely destroyed or just removed from app stores or blocked by internet service providers. Even if the apps were removed, pirates can quickly adapt and release new versions. Hence, the issue of already downloaded and functioning apps remains a significant concern for LaLiga.

Tebas acknowledged this challenge and expressed the league’s commitment to addressing it. The president stated that LaLiga is currently “talking to Google and other platforms” to locate the pirate apps on users’ phones and subsequently remove them. Tebas emphasized that if the removal of child pornography from devices is possible, protecting intellectual property should be equally achievable.

While Tebas’s comparison raises debates regarding prioritizing child protection, it also highlights the importance of effectively combating piracy. LaLiga’s proactive approach in collaborating with technology giants like Google demonstrates their determination to safeguard their intellectual property rights.

Ultimately, LaLiga’s battle against pirate apps is an ongoing struggle. Despite their efforts to eliminate these apps, pirates continue to adapt and find new ways to distribute their illegal content. However, LaLiga’s commitment to combatting piracy and their collaboration with industry leaders like Google signify important steps toward protecting the integrity and economic viability of the sporting industry.

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