TV4, which is broadcasting some of Sweden’s games, had gone to court to force bars to pay up. A number of branches of the O’Learys sports bar chain had said they would show the games without paying TV4’s charges.
“This is a good ruling,” said Göran Ellung, spokesman for TV4.
“We have no aim other than to show the World Cup and for everyone to be able to see it. We just need to get compensation for the costs we have”.
The court did not agree with TV4 that bars should be prevented from showing matches if they have not first paid for the rights. It reasoned that such a ruling would have small benefits for TV4 but major effects for the bars.
TV4 was told that it should negotiate directly with the bars in question – which for the purposes of the case were an O’Learys bar in Stockholm and another in Malmö, which are liable to charges of 120 and 240 kronor per game respectively.
The TV company was told that if it did not reach agreement with the companies, it could sue them for the unpaid amounts.