158. The nature of rights to broadcast sports events.

The law of England and Wales does not recognise the existence of broadcasting or other proprietary rights in sports events1. Broadcasting rights in sports events are therefore created, exploited and protected not as sui generis rights but by virtue of the application of principles of real property law, intellectual property law (principally copyright) and contract law2.

The principle that proprietary rights in sports events do not exist is long-established3, and similarly, English law does not recognise a tort of unfair competition which prevents third parties exploiting the business developed by others4: however, this does not mean that broadcasting rights in