Livestreaming of Friday Night High School Football Games is Now Allowedposted on 7.26.2021
Texas Commissioner of Education Mike Morath has approved this summer’s University Interscholastic League’s updates to Section 868(c) of the UIL Constitution and Contest Rules.
This final step means the 2021-2022 UIL Regular Season Broadcast Guidelines are now in effect.
The major 2021-22 rule change allows UIL member schools to permit the live webcast of a regular season Friday night football game.
A webcast is any telecast streamed over the Internet.
Any negotiations regarding telecasts are at the discretion of the school district and must follow UIL rules.
TAB urges radio and TV stations interested in live streaming Friday night regular season football games to contact their local schools immediately to arrange carriage rights to such streams.
UIL Live Webcast General Guidelines
All Friday night webcasts must be in accordance with the following guidelines:
- School administration for both Home and Visiting teams must come to a mutual agreement to allow live webcasts.
- With prior approval by school administration, each team may have one webcast per game.
- If school administrations for both teams allow for the live webcast of a game, the host venue should make every attempt to accommodate both the Home and Visitor Team production crews.
- Webcasts may be on any streamed media platform approved by the school.
- All live webcasts must adhere to UIL telecast guidelines and advertisement restrictions.
TV Over-the-Air Broadcasts
While streamed telecasts are allowed under this 2021-22 rules, live over-the-air telecasts of a regular season Friday night football game return to their previous status of “not permitted.”
A telecast is defined as any live or tape-delayed video footage of a contest in its entirety that can be broadcast over any medium or channel.
The UIL temporarily suspended the rule last season due to pandemic restrictions on game attendance.
Live over-the-air broadcast telecasts of non-football athletic contests and football games on days other than Friday are permitted during the regular season.
Any negotiations regarding over-the-air telecasts are at the discretion of the school district and must follow UIL rules.
Radio Over-the-Air Broadcasts
Live radio broadcasts of a regular season football game on a Friday night are allowed as they have been for decades.
Over-the-Air and Streaming Announcer General Guidelines
If providing announcers as part of an over-the-air or streamed telecast, or radio broadcast, announcers should follow the following announcer guidelines:
- Announcers must be competent and exhibit professionalism.
- No dramatization shall be made of any unsportsmanlike conduct, incidents or displays on the part of the participants or fans.
- There shall be no destructive criticisms of officials’ decisions.
- No mention shall be made of injuries, unpreventable accidents, or other incidents which may cause any anxiety on the part of the viewers.
The following categories are prohibited during over-the-air broadcasts and streams of any UIL activities:
- Political announcements
- Cigarettes or other tobacco product
- Gambling services or venues
- Sexual services or adult entertainment venues
- Alcohol and firearms advertisements
Alleged violations of these provisions fall under the jurisdiction of the District and State Executive Committees.
Violations will be subject to the range of penalties listed in the UIL Constitution and Contest Rules.
Postseason / Playoff Guidelines
Stations should be aware that the rules noted above apply only to regular season football games. Different rules apply to broadcasts and streams of postseason play.
Stations with UIL rule questions should contact the UIL’s Media Department at email@example.com or 512-471-5883.
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