ISPs won’t block websites or content streaming Football World Cup 2022 which are accessible in Nepal. The telecom regulator Nepal Telecommunication Authority (NTA) reversed its earlier decision stating that it can’t implement the ban on the content not prohibited by the Civil Code.
Earlier, the regulator said that Media Hub retains the sole right to broadcast the WC 2022 games in Nepal and said that it should be the only source in Nepal. This led to many ISPs banning sites and apps showing matches live. But now, the authority has declared it a matter of “copyright claim.”
It seems that the body has pulled its hands out of the issue. Now, Media Hub can only claim copyrights to the content but can’t demand a ban on online sources that are showing matches.
What does it mean?
Most probably, ISPs won’t be allowed to ban any websites, apps, or sources to WC 2022 matches on their network. But Media Hub can go to court if it claims copyright violation on the contest it has spent heavily to air in Nepal.
FIFA Football World Cup 2022 is available in Nepal only on a payment basis. Media Hub, which has an exclusive right to the competition’s content, has imposed a subscription charge to watch the WC matches live. Nepali viewers need to pay Rs 565 (including tax) to watch all the matches live on TV. But many users have taken to online sources to watch the matches skipping the subscription much to the displeasure of Media Hub.
Earlier, the news broke that Nepal Telecommunication Authority (NTA) would block access to apps and websites which are broadcasting Football matches live from Qatar. The regulator hinted it would respect and ensure Media Hub’s exclusivity on the content and ban OTT and online sources broadcasting matches.
But the regulator has cleared its instance on the issue.
FIND EVERYTHING: How to watch Football World Cup in Nepal? Find All Fixtures
ISPs won’t block websites streaming FIFA World Cup matches unless told to
Likewise, ISPAN CEO Subash Khadka earlier shared that it won’t shut down websites that the regulator doesn’t ask it to.
“No content or website will shut down unless directed by NTA and other official bodies,” he said.
Recently, ISPs have been found to stop some sites on their networks but ISPAN says that it could be a measure to mitigate the increase in bandwidth demands.
“ISPs have no authority to block websites. In case of technical errors, some sites may shut down. We restore them after learning,” Khadka shared.
In the meantime, Nepali viewers have complained that they are forced to pay for the WC which they have watched for free to date. However, Media Hub maintains it is necessary to break even on their spending on broadcasting rights.
Fans though have resorted to websites and apps to watch the games live evading the subscription.
How have your experiences been in regards to catching up with the WC 2022 matches on TV this edition? You can share with us in the comments below.
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