Euro2008: live free streaming vs. pay-per-view

UEFA has prepared a very powerful infrastructure for broadcasting the Euro2008 championship over the Internet (I see matches available in 2 stream qualities: 450kbps and 2000kbps). UEFA charges 1.99 EUR for a single football game (Matchpack – full match, replay & highlights) and 19,99 EUR for the full package (you can check it out here). I had some issues in my country with this service because they use an automatic redirect and I get another page.

Today I was searching for an alternative method to watch the football game and since all the classical TV streams (windows media/real) were down and UEFA’s pay-per-view was not working on my workstation, I discovered a new website promoting a new concept and threatening traditional video broadcasts (I’m not sure yet about their policy and copyright issues and probably UEFA is monitoring this problem):

Justin.tv is building the destination site for broadcasting and watching live video online while chatting with friends.
Justin.tv tears down the walls of traditional video and social networking sites by enabling viewers and broadcasters to interact and exchange ideas in real time through chat and live video.
In the past, live broadcasting was only available to large media corporations who were willing to spend millions of dollars. Today, Justin.tv has democratized live video by shrinking all of the functionality of an expensive TV satellite trunk into a simple laptop or desktop computer.

Here is where they “democratize” live video and of course I can only wonder if the website will live to see the end of Euro2008 or it will grow to become the next big thing after YouTube – the terms of agreement seem to be very clear: you are not allowed to disseminate or receive original or appropriately licensed content. On the other hand, there are probably only 2 guys moderating the website and both of them are football fans 🙂

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