29 Sept 2022

Geo-blocking of RTÉ Olympics coverage in Northern Ireland 'unacceptable', says Louth TD

Sinn Féin's Imelda Munster said that solutions need to be found for future international sporting events

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Boxers Kellie Harrington and Brendan Irvine, who have been announced as Team Ireland flagbearers for the Opening Ceremony. Photo: Brendan Moran/Sportsfile

A Louth TD has called on the government and RTÉ to end the geo-blocking of the Olympics in Northern Ireland, as citizens of the north are unable to watch Irish coverage.

Sinn Féin’s Imelda Munster called on Culture Minister Catherine Martin and RTÉ to address the issue with geo-blocking, which does not allow people in Northern Ireland to watch the coverage on the Irish team.

The spokesperson for Sport said that Team Ireland has done the country proud at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics and that RTÉ has provided excellent coverage of the games.

“Unfortunately citizens in the north have not been afforded the same experience, as RTÉ coverage of the games has been geo-blocked in the north,” said Deputy Munster.

“In my view this is totally unacceptable. A significant number of our athletes in Tokyo are from the north, and it is totally unfair that northern viewers can’t watch the national team, and their local athletes, competing.

“RTÉ is a national public service broadcaster, and it’s only right that their coverage should be available to everyone living on the island of Ireland.”

According to Deputy Munster, she has been in contact with both Minister Martin and Dee Forbes, the Director General of RTÉ, to ask what measures they have taken to solve the geo-blocking issues for future sporting events.

“This is a matter that needs to be given serious consideration to prevent this ridiculous situation going on into future tournaments or sporting events,” said Deputy Munster.

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