Qatar's bein sports and football broadcasting in the middle east: International influence and regional rancor

Craig L. LaMay*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

Of the many Arab Gulf state investments in international football, none have had the global reach or the regional impact of Qatar's BeIN Sports network. Since it became independent of Al Jazeera Sport in 2013, and through its acquisition of top-tier sports rights, BeIN has become a major plank in Qatar's efforts to brand itself as a global and regional power in the world of sports. The company broadcasts independently or with partners in Europe, North America, Australia, and Asia, but is far and away the dominant sports broadcaster in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA), where it has more than 50 percent of the market and the rights to most top-tier sports events in the twenty-three countries it counts in its MENA portfolio. That market dominance was aggressively challenged in 2017, when BeIN suddenly found itself in a fight for its life with BeoutQ, an industrial-scale piracy operation based in Saudi Arabia that roiled international sports broadcasting. The story of that battle and what it means for football broadcasting in the Middle East is the focus of this chapter.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationFootball in the Middle East
Subtitle of host publicationState, Society, and the Beautiful Game
PublisherOxford University Press
Pages303-321
Number of pages19
ISBN (Electronic)9780197659670
ISBN (Print)9781787387133
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 19 2023

Keywords

  • BeIN Sports network
  • Football
  • Piracy
  • Qatar
  • Saudi Arabia
  • Sports broadcasting

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Social Sciences

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