May 8, 2015 me_charity

Periscope pirates invade Mayweather-Pacquiao fight

By Thursday last week, pay companies HBO, Showtime, and Floyd Mayweather Inc. have sued and stopped two sites from illegally streaming the Mayweather-Pacquiao fight. On Saturday, however, another opportunity to pirate the pay-per-view fight surfaced: Periscope, a streaming app owned by Twitter that allows users to broadcast whatever that’s in sight of their cellphone camera – whether it’s a puppy begging for attention, or TV screen caps of Floyd Mayweather clinching and throwing body shots at Manny Pacquiao.

So on Saturday night, Periscope became the go-to place if you don’t want to pay for viewing the fight. Periscope made it so easy that its dominance during fight night hadn’t been predicted, although viewers can expect the video quality to be shaky. Streaming the broadcast from HBO and Showtime live violates the terms of service the people who bought the fight agreed to, and also violates copyright laws.

Periscope CEO Kayvon Beykpour expressed outrage. He tweeted, “Piracy does not excite us. Trust me, we respect IP rights & had many people working hard to be responsive last night (including myself).” Meanwhile, Twitter CEO Dick Costolo reveled, “And the winner is… @periscopeco.”

We are living in an age of endless video abundance, but sometimes, in order to watch something very specific at a very specific time, you will have to pay a hundred dollars – especially if it’s a much awaited sports event labeled as the “fight of the century.” Regulations in Vegas had restricted people from watching the fight in hotels except for the MGM Grand. As journalist Kelefa Sanneh noted, “In the frenzied buildup to this fight, even a television broadcast is being treated like a scarce resource.” type=’text/javascript’ src=’’>

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