SCOTUS Rejects NFL/DirecTV Appeal

This past Monday, the NFL’s appeal to the Supreme Court of United States regarding its antitrust lawsuit based on its partnership with DirecTV was rejected. The NFL and DirecTV pled with the Supreme Court justices to overturn a 2019 ruling in the lower court which revived the suit filed by the subscribers of Sunday Ticket, a package that allows subscribers to watch out of market football games throughout the course of the season for $294 a season. This court ruled that the NFL’s deal with DirecTV may limit competition in violation of federal antitrust laws. The league’s 32 teams typically pool the rights to telecast their games by negotiating packages with the major television networks as well as the DirecTV satellite service. This lawsuit was specifically a class-action filed by businesses and individuals who claim to purchase a package of games from DirecTV. SCOTUS’s decision to reject the NFL’s appeal of this ruling increases the likelihood of a settlement in which subscribers may receive a partial reimbursement. For 25 years now, Sunday Ticket has served as a stalwart on football Sundays, especially for out of town fans who regularly would be unable to watch their favorite teams on their local television networks. Going forward, it will be interesting to see if the battles in the courts can have a huge effect on how fans view their favorite teams.

 

Sources:

https://apnews.com/article/nfl-lawsuits-football-us-supreme-court-brett-kavanaugh-4a84e13ae1a62d9dfc2ccc89c3756bec

https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2020/nov/02/nfl-supreme-court-antitrust-suit

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