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End Sports Blackouts Now!

At today’s Senate Commerce Committee hearing on the television and video marketplace, Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) introduced the Furthering Access to Network Sports (FANS) Act. This bill aims to eliminate the cause of most sports blackouts: take-downs during retransmission consent disputes. Continue reading

Sports fans need Distant Network Signals

This week, the House Energy & Commerce and Senate Commerce Committees will hold hearings on the Satellite Television Extension and Localism Act Reauthorization (STELAR), which allows Satellite TV companies to distribute out-of-market local broadcast TV signals in limited situations, such as where a small market lacks a network affiliate. So, if you live in a rural area without a local affiliate, you can still keep up with your sports by watching a neighboring market's station. Continue reading

Restoring Student-Athlete Rights

Yesterday afternoon, Rep. Mark Walker (R NC-6) introduced the Student-Athlete Equity Act to restore the rights of student-athletes. By conditioning the NCAA's tax exemption, the legislation hopes to give student-athletes power of their personal identity and likeness. So now, the NCAA must choose — do what's right or pay taxes. Continue reading

Give College Athletes Collective Bargaining!

It's no secret that the NCAA doesn't usually act in the interest of the student athletes they govern. After the tragic death of University of Maryland offensive lineman, Jordan McNair, one Maryland state delegate and former college athlete took it upon herself to provide a way for college athletes to protect themselves. Del. Brooke Lierman introduce HB 548 which would grant college athletes the right to collectively bargain with the university.  Executive Director, Brian Hess, testified in support of this bill: Continue reading

Sports Bettors' Bill of Rights Introduced in Virginia

Today, Delegate Marcus Simon (D VA-53) introduced HB 2210 which would provide robust and enforceable consumer protections while creating a legal marketplace for sports betting. If consumer protections are important to you, be sure to sign the letter to the Virginia House of Delegates below showing your support. Continue reading

Federal Sports Betting Bill Needs More Protections

Yesterday Senators Hatch (R-UT) and Schumer (D-NY) revealed the Sports Wagering Market Integrity Act of 2018. The bill seeks to establish federal standards for states that wish to legalize sports betting. Brian Hess, Executive Director of SFC, said the following: “Any sports betting legalization must include robust consumer protections. This bill is an improvement from initial drafts but Sports Fans Coalition will push lawmakers to include all elements of the Sports Bettors' Bill of Rights.” Continue reading

Consumer advocates urge the FTC to investigate the ticketing industry

Yesterday, Sports Fans Coalition and the National Consumers League jointly filed comments which called on the FTC to investigate many consumer harms that are plaguing the live-event ticketing marketplace. The comments, filed in advance of the FTC’s “Online Event Ticket Workshop” argue how excessive market consolidation since the Live Nation-Ticketmaster merger in 2010 has caused fans to fall victim to deceptive practices such as drip pricing, holdbacks, and restricted ticket transferability and has resulted in fans being forced to pay more than they agreed to for tickets. Continue reading

Sports Bettors' Bill of Rights Addressed in Congress

For the past couple of months, industry stakeholders have been working with policymakers to pass legislation that legalizes sports betting. However, They’ve been doing so without much regard to consumer protections — namely, SFC’s Sports Bettors’ Bill of Rights. Continue reading

Sports Fans vs. Sinclair: Game Highlights

Tribune’s announcement that it ended the buyout agreement with Sinclair this week represents the end of a year-long battle between SFC, business interests, and other public interest advocates and Sinclair. Now that the $3.9 Billion takeover is over, let’s look at a few of the highlights that created a true underdog story. Continue reading

The Right to Recourse

The history of sports betting includes well-known cases of fraud and bad actors meddling with winnings. Sports betting legislation though has not addressed “The Right to Recourse.” Lawmakers must ensure that every bet placed is protected in the event a transaction goes awry. The right requires systems and resources, such as internal complaint process information and access to the government regulators’ complaint system, to be conveniently accessible to all sports bettors. Continue reading