Deal on footage reached


Fair­fax New Zealand and Sky Tele­vi­sion have buried the hatchet in their le­gal dis­pute over the use of Sky TV sports clips on Stuff.

Sky TV filed ac­tion against Fair­fax, fel­low pub­lisher NZME, TVNZ and Me­di­a­Works in the High Court in 2016.

The pay-tele­vi­sion gi­ant al­leged the me­dia firms had been breach­ing its copyright by show­ing Sky’s sports footage in their sports re­ports.

Fair­fax and Sky TV reached a set­tle­ment on ‘‘con­fi­den­tial terms’’ be­fore Christ­mas, Fair­fax NZ lawyer Ker­rie-Lee Mag­ill and Sky spokes­woman Melodie Robin­son said.

The im­pli­ca­tions of the agree­ment for sports fans are not yet clear.

Mag­ill would not com­ment on whether any money had changed hands, or whether Fair­fax would be show­ing as much sports footage from Sky on Stuff in fu­ture.

The res­o­lu­tion of the dis­pute be­tween Fair­fax and Sky TV is cer­tain to gen­er­ate ex­pec­ta­tions that Sky’s ac­tion against Me­di­a­Works, NZME and TVNZ could also be set­tled be­fore reach­ing court.

But there is no in­di­ca­tion to sug­gest that has been agreed yet.

The sports clips dis­pute be­gan when SkyTV ob­jected to what it ar­gued was the un­war­ranted use by Fair­fax of clips from the Rio de Janeiro Olympics on Stuff, be­fore widen­ing out to en­com­pass other sports and me­dia or­gan­i­sa­tions.

The Copyright Act per­mits ‘‘fair use’’ of copyright ma­te­rial for the pur­pose of news re­port­ing. How­ever, the leg­is­la­tion pro­vides no guid­ance and there is lit­tle case law.

Fair­fax NZ pub­lishes Stuff and news­pa­pers in­clud­ing the Sun­day Star-Times, the Press and the Do­min­ion Post.

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