Football fansites get sweet FA

Fees demanded for fixture lists

Ordinary football fans who run Web sites dedicated to supporting their clubs are facing legal action from the game's governing body in England.

The FA Premier League has sent out letters warning supporters that they could be in breach of copyright for publishing their team's fixture list.

In a letter to Arsenal fan, Andy Herrod, who runs stattoshop.co.uk, the FA Premier League insists that it owns the copyright and all other rights in the fixture list.

Unless Herrod coughs up £300, he has until tomorrow to remove the fixtures and give a written undertaking that he will not reinstate the list - or face legal action.

The FA Premier League also said that it might "contact [his] web server with a view to placing a block on [his] website until all [his] infringements are eliminated to our satisfaction".

Of course, the FA Premier League is well within its rights but Herrod reckons the game's governing body is just being "penny pinching" and "petty".

He said: "I can't understand why they're doing this. I can't see the harm we're doing?"

And he said that this was attacking the very grass roots supporters that follow the game week in, week out.

A spokesman for the FA told The Reg that it was a copyright issue.

"Why should newspapers have to pay for fixture lists and not these fanzines," he said. ®

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