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Sunday, September 07, 2008

All Your Yards Are Belong to Us (Good Lord, That’s Getting Old, Isn’t It?)

Fantasy football--for all you mini Al Davises out there--could become a very different thing in the future. Or, at least, it could be come a little bit more expensive.

Apparently the NFL Players Association believes player statistics are something that belong to the player and that operators of fantasy football sites, like CBS Interactive--owe the NFLPA a little bit of licensing money.  Which seems mighty stupid to me.

CBS Interactive has filed a federal lawsuit in Minneapolis to clarify who can use the statistics that underlie fantasy football leagues.
[...]
CBS seeks a ruling saying that the players cannot control use of the publicly available numbers and cannot demand that CBS pay for their use.

Let’s just say that I’m on the CBS side of this argument.

Read the rest.

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Those are our numbers! Quit using our numbers!

It might be reasonable to bar the gamers from using the statistics that the NFL Players Association compiles, if they in fact compile them. The body of material they publish (again, if they do - I dunno) could be viewed as intellectual property.

However, there is nothing on God’s green earth preventing anyone from simply compiling the statistics themselves from the public record of the games themselves. There’s no copyright on a number.

Encyclopedia Brittanica can forbid me from reprinting their article on the history of South Ossetia. They can’t stop me from writing my own, even from the very same set of facts.

on Sep 08 2008 @ 08:55 AM

Forget that, I’m going to tie up South Ossetia so tightly that even the South Ossetians are going to have to pay me an annual royalty just to claim their own regional heritage.

And just wait until I get done with “God’s green earth.”

on Sep 08 2008 @ 09:32 AM

Definitely preempted by the Copyright act.  This is a fundamentally frivolous suit.

on Sep 08 2008 @ 07:28 PM

Actually, I miswrote.  The NFLPA’s claim is frivolous.  Suing for a declaratory judgment of same is not.

on Sep 08 2008 @ 07:30 PM

Yet another face of the reason I’ve utterly abandoned the NFL in favor of watching the local high school play under the Friday night lights.  The greed is just so pervasive, it hasn’t been about the sport for a long time now....

on Sep 09 2008 @ 07:11 AM
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