The World Cup was wonderful for so many reasons this year, whether it was watching Arjen Robben’s 5,268 dives, Luis Suarez’s moment of madness, or the animated facial expressions of Mexico’s manager Miguel Herrera, there was always something to share. It was these moments and more from The Beautiful Game that generated thousands of animated GIFs and Vines of World Cup goals, a big win for social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter. While fans happily enjoyed sharing these brief clips, FIFA was far less impressed and began cracking down to remove them. The same is about to happen to the Premier League in England.
Vine crawlers will be hunting for soccer videos
In an interview with BBC’s Newsbeat, the Premier League’s director of communications, Dan Johnson, has warned soccer fans that sharing goals online is against the law. "It's a breach of copyright and we would discourage fans from doing it, we're developing technologies like GIF crawlers, Vine crawlers, working with Twitter to look to curtail this kind of activity." The crawlers will presumably hunt for popular Vines and submit requests for the material to be removed automatically.
FIFA was quick to react during the World Cup, but it’s not clear if the Premier League, a much smaller organization, will produce similar results or be able to battle how quickly goals are shared. Rights to Premier League goals are tied up in lucrative contracts with British newspapers The Sun and The Times, so a lot of money is at stake for the companies involved. Sky Sports and BT Sport in the UK pay £1 billion per season to broadcast some Premier League games live. The Premier League’s warning comes just days after Manchester United banned tablets from its stadium, resulting in a hostile week for tech and soccer enthusiasts.