India v England, 1st Test, Ahmedabad, 1st day November 15, 2012

News agencies boycott first Test

ESPNcricinfo staff

Major news agencies have boycotted the first Test of the series between England and India in protest at media restrictions imposed by the BCCI.

UK newspapers including the Times and the Telegraph will not use live pictures of the Test after the BCCI barred several agencies, including Getty Images, from the ground. ESPNcricinfo will also not carry live images.

Others agencies, such as Agence France-Presse (AFP), Reuters and the Associated Press, have taken the decision to boycott the match in protest. The Press Association (PA) will continue to provide its text service but has withdrawn its photographer. While the BCCI has accredited some news agencies, they refused to allow Getty Images, Action Images and some India agencies into the stadium on the grounds that their pictures were not used only for editorial purposes.

The BCCI are providing images that are downloadable from their website, but most media organisations are declining to use them, fearing the action sets a precedent along the road towards censorship.

The episode is the latest dispute between the BCCI and media organisations in the run-up to the series. Sky TV, which owns the television rights for the tour in the UK, decided not to send its team of commentators to India after the BCCI demanded £500,000 for hosting them in the grounds. Sky refused to pay and are instead commentating from a live television feed in London. Sky's small reporting team has also been asked to film only outside the ground despite having bought rights to the series.

The BBC, which owns the rights for audio coverage in the UK, was also asked for an extra £50,000 in costs ahead of the series but reached an agreement with the BCCI.

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Ashok on November 18, 2012, 17:08 GMT

    It is best in the interest of Cricket that BBC & BCCI come to a fair & reciprocal agreement & stop washing the dirty linen in Public. There is a very important "C' word called "Compromise". This has been the major format to a fair & amicable solution to many major issues. It is always great to show a good "Bottom Line" but it is equally important that the popularity of the game is not sacrificed by 2 self serving Boards!

  • Deepak on November 17, 2012, 15:38 GMT

    @Michael Dickson u may be true....but even as an indian fan ..mate u can not fight with BCCI...

  • shaan on November 17, 2012, 14:13 GMT

    BCCI is acting too much.. Lets see how many days it goes on. BCCI has forgotton Newton's 3rd law of motion!!!

  • Dummy4 on November 17, 2012, 6:15 GMT

    @Robin Kaul "that is paying 150 pounds for even buying a TV, or if u see it on internet... so watching live cricket streams on laptops is practically illegal in UK... " You're wrong there actually. If you've purchased a TV and only use it for playing DVD or video games, you don't pay for a TV license for it, ergo your claim that just for purchasing a TV you have to buy a license is actually false. You do pay for live broadcasts regardless of the method of broadcast, but if you are watching something on your computer after it has already been broadcast then you don't pay for a license for that either. FYI, India used to have licensing as well, but they withdrew it. Licenses simply cover a majority the cost of funding so that very little advertisements are needed. Judging by what cricket streamed out of India tends to look like, with the occassional bit of cricket between ads, I'd go for TV licensing anyday - and I'm a kiwi, we don't have TV licensing in NZ anymore.

  • Torsha on November 16, 2012, 23:53 GMT

    The Big Boss = The BCCI !!

  • Srinivas on November 16, 2012, 21:01 GMT

    Wake up people. BCCI only banned those firms who sell images. They didn't ban if firms use them for their editorials. People are just myopic and jump onto the BCCI bashing bandwagon. Getty images or whoever you are get a life. Will ya? I support BCCI on this issue.

  • david on November 16, 2012, 16:43 GMT

    Please remember BCCI what goes around comes around

  • indiancricket on November 16, 2012, 16:16 GMT

    indian cricket has two words " indian" "cricket"... however indian government has no direct involvment in it . just make urself clear here .indian cricket is run by BCCI , which is private ltd company . So private ltd has right to protect his interest. bcci is no meant for charity. But since indian are involve in BCCI , simply misunderstood by all it is indian government running sports body like hockey, boxing etc. BCCI is like other private ltd company in india which sells cricket. so they keep their right to sell everything related to cricket. which is wrongly termed by media "as ban of freedom". u will have to pay for anything as u buy product from any shop.

  • rob on November 16, 2012, 14:41 GMT

    @yorkshirematt... something like that is allready happening in your country... Its called TV licence...

  • Dummy4 on November 16, 2012, 14:35 GMT

    @ path_finder_13.. look at who is asked to pay more... THE RICH... cricket ground tickets are still among the cheapest in the world... and why should be there any free perks for these news agencies(like bbc) who lobbied in their own country to pay for a TV licence.. that is paying 150 pounds for even buying a TV, or if u see it on internet... so watching live cricket streams on laptops is practically illegal in UK...

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