“They’ve got their eye off the ball”: culture secretary Oliver Dowden is accused of missing a “rare” chance to hold Saudi Arabia accountable over beIN Sports piracy claims through investigation into Newcastle takeover
- Newcastle United is about to be taken over by a consortium led by Saudi Arabia
- The movement led to protests from various organizations, such as beIN Sports
- The government has revealed that it has no intention of acting on the deal
- SNP culture spokesman John Nicolson hired secretary Oliver Dowden
Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Oliver Dowden has been convicted of failing to intervene in the proposed takeover of Newcastle United by a consortium led by Saudi Arabia.
Amanda Staveley is leading the £ 300 million offer with the Saudi Public Investment Fund which will hold an 80 percent stake in the club.
Numerous groups, including Amnesty International and beIN Sport, have written to the Premier League asking them to seriously consider the implications of passing a deal.
Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden has been criticized for his position on the Newcastle takeover
While Amnesty has questioned the kingdom’s human rights record, broadcasters are concerned about the alleged state-backed piracy of their TV rights for England’s best flight – noting a three-year campaign in which their feed is reportedly under the brand duplicated beoutQ in Saudi Arabia.
The government has indicated that it does not intend to interfere with the process as the competition is currently conducting the owner and director test.
However, John Nicolson MP – the SNP’s spokesperson for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport – has criticized the secretary for ‘passing the money’.
“The Saudi-backed takeover offers the British government a rare opportunity to hold Crown Prince Mohamed Bin Salman in the spotlight in a state-backed pirate operation, he writes,” he wrote in a statement.
“Instead, the Secretary of State for Digital Affairs, Culture, Media and Sport is about to pass things on to the Premier League.”
Amanda Staveley leads a consortium that includes the Saud Public Investment Fund
As broadcasters and professional sports organizations face the devastating effects of COVID-19, it is striking that the culture secretary seems so undisturbed by the purchase of Newcastle United – by the entity responsible for the theft and distribution of UK sports and entertainment products for almost three years. ‘
BeIN Sports has tried to take legal action against the kingdom over what it believes to be the ‘intellectual theft’ of their broadcasts, nine times denied representation in Saudi Arabia.
Nicolson argues that the current situation provides an opportunity to hold the kingdom to account, emphasizing that not only the Premier League will suffer damage from inaction.
“Formula 1 has already succumbed to the scandal, with beIN SPORTS admitting that the costs of piracy left the broadcaster no choice but to withdraw coverage of the sport,” he wrote.
Jonh Nicolson MP claims that Formula 1 has already been affected by piracy in Saudi Arabia
Without immediate action from the UK government, the sports and entertainment industries are on a collision course with a serious financial black hole.
“If this continues, no credible international or domestic broadcaster will consider paying the full price for broadcasting rights to British sports and entertainment, only to have their investments stolen as soon as they are broadcast.
The Newcastle United acquisition is a gilded opportunity to get a foot on the ground – to push the pause button on every deal until Saudi Arabia commits full-time to the blatant theft of Britain’s creative talent and those responsible are held accountable.
“Instead, they’ve turned their gaze off the ball at the crucial moment – leaving the Premier League to carry the can.”