OLBG research reveals the extent of people illegally watching Premier League football

Not long ago, OLBG (Online Betting Group) analysed how people in the United Kingdom watch the Premier League. The campaign was called ‘Fans of the EPL‘. Many fans unknowingly watch games illegally, while a sizeable portion of individuals rely on social media for news.

Watching games by all means possible 

OLBG’s research analysed the behaviours of 1,000 Premier League supporters in Britain. Football is clearly something that means a lot to many individuals, especially in London. Within the capital, 40% of surveyed fans living here admitted to skipping work so they could watch a game. Across the whole country, this figure stood at 9%.

Social media, especially Twitter, is proving to be important too. Just over 31% of women rely on this platform for breaking news and updates, according to the research. Meanwhile, 27.5% of men said that they use the website for keeping updated on Premier League ongoings.

People are also willing to access matches via illegal streams. Throughout the UK, 22% of fans admitted to watching games via the above – even if they know what they’re doing isn’t allowed. In total, five million fans in Britain use these on a regular basis to access matches.

In addition to the above, 8.8% of supporters have admittedly used someone else’s login details to view an event. 68% have done it at least once.

A lack of knowledge 
OLBG’s findings have suggested that many people illegally access events because there is a lack of awareness. Four in 10 survey participants, for example, claimed to be unaware that  unofficial internet streams aren’t legal.

Bill Bush, Executive Director for the Premier League, said:

“The Premier League has every right to be worried about breaches of their intellectual property. Almost 40% of respondents were unaware that using an unofficial online internet stream to watch a live game of football is illegal, while more than half (55) were unaware that it’s illegal to watch live matches online without a TV licence.

“This shadowy world of data piracy drains money away from the sport and threatens the integrity of the game.”

“The Premier League is a successful competition, which depends on audio-visual rights for the investment that keeps standards high and fans happy. We will always protect our rights to defend ourselves from piracy in any form, whether in broadcast or data rights.