buy propecia buy viagra buy cialis buy levitra buy zithromax buy doxycycline buy prednisone buy effexor buy clomid buy desyrel

Olson’s Observations

Technology. Innovation. Science. VC. Media. :: by Eric Olson

Archive for the ‘Law’ Category

All Your Baseball Are Belong To Us

with 2 comments

MLBMLB Advanced Media continues to make me look stupid for praising their brilliant moves in new media (i.e. showing baseball and other sports online for a fee). First, they went after slingbox and effectively said that people should have to pay twice for content. Now, they (along with the MLBPA) think that baseball players names and historical statistics should be copyrightable. Their main gripe is that there are fantasy baseball leagues who profit from the use of player names and stats by charging users to use their fantasy baseball services. Apparently MLBAM thinks they should a) get a cut of this money or b) wall the information off and only allow MLBAM’s Fantasy League product or c) a combination of a and b.

Thank God that the courts are actually sane. They have said that MLBAM can’t halt the use of player names and stats. The court elaborated by saying that even if the players have claimed right of publicity, the First Amendment takes precedence over such a right. Of course MLBAM has appealed the ruling so I am sure this will be dragged out for a while. In the meantime it is interesting to speculate on what MLBAM (and the MLBPA) thinks they are doing by trying to place a wall around player data and names.

I am sure MLBAM thinks that they are just protecting “their property” and that others should not be able to make money from using this information. However, what they are doing is alienating their most loyal fans. Those fans are the ones that live and die by their fantasy leagues and are constantly watching games and checking stats. The MLB has already alienated a lot of casual fans with the salary inequities and strikes. They can’t afford to lose the diehards. Fortunately for them, the diehards won’t go away easily (myself included). They will go eventually though or at least start moving away from the MLB to other forms of baseball. MLBAM really needs to realize that it only benefits them to have the stats and player name data out there and available to fans. Until they do they will continue to upset fans with their moves to make America’s pastime property of MLB.

Origin of the title: Click here to see where the long standing internet joke came from that spawned the title for this post. If you really like the joke you can check out the obligatory cafe press store someone set up and get some schwag.

Written by Eric Olson

August 9th, 2006 at 10:20 pm