Italy’s regulatory agency AGCOM announced that starting on February 2, 2024, 65 DNS and 8 IP addresses involved in illegally broadcasting Day 23 play in the Serie A football championship were blocked through Italy’s new Piracy Shield platform within 30 minutes of reporting.
The Piracy Shield platform came into existence as a result of an anti-piracy law passed in July 2023 and subsequent AGCOM regulation, which allows for automated management and distribution of piracy reports.
Reports are submitted to the platform by rights holders, such as sports leagues and others; which in turn notifies Internet service providers of the infringing instance. By Italian law, ISPs must block reported sites within 30 minutes.
Site users are directed to an AGCOM landing page:
Translated to English, the page says: “Access to this site, which illegally disseminated content protected by copyright, has been disabled while running of a provision of the Authority for guarantees in communications pursuant to the Regulation referred to in resolution no. 680/13/CONS.
For more information visit the website www.agcom.it
According to AGCOM, Internet service providers serving more than 80% of the Italian online market have been accredited to the platform.
Piracy Shield Starts: The first illegal IPTVs are blocked (in Italian). Press release. February 5, 2024. AGCOM (Autorita per le Garanzie nelle Comunicazioni – English: Authority for Communications Guarantees)
Italy: ISPs deploy Piracy Shield site-blocking ticketing system, a work in progress. Article. December 10, 2023. by Steven Hawley. Piracy Monitor
Piracy Shield, the platform against sports piracy is active: how it works, rules, sanctions. (In Italian). Article. by Lorenzo Nicolao. January 31, 2024. Published by the Web site Login: Corriere Della Sera
Piracy Shield, good the first time? Anti-piracy shield works but struggles in big matches like Inter-Juventus (In Italian). February 6, 2024. By Lorenzo Nicolao. Published by the Web site Login: Corriere Della Sera
Why it matters.
While there is lots of pride in this accomplishment, the Piracy Shield site had its share of startup challenges, which can be expected with any technical advance. Another test case staged on February 4 fell short: Internet users could still access illegal streams of a match at San Siro could type ‘streaming football’ into a search engine and still be able to watch illegally. Links circulated via Telegram also escaped the Piracy Shield trap.
Italian regulators have taken the initiative to put an automated system in place, backed by national law. One online publication in Italy noted an estimate that Italy’s Serie A football league suffered economic damange of more than 300 million euros every year.