Southampton Football Club has infuriated UK media outlets by banning photographers from its home games, reports Press Gazette.
The League One club has said images taken by its in-house team of photographers would be “available to all media organisations on normal commercial terms”.
The move has prompted widespread condemnation of the club, with The Sun printing “the most one-sided match report in our history” as a stand against the club’s “draconian” measures, after Southampton’s opening day defeat to Plymouth Argyle. One paper resorted to drawing Roy of the Rovers style cartoons.
Southampton originally said media groups would have to buy images from a single outlet, but the agency hired, Digital South, pulled out after a backlash over press freedom.
The club has been at loggerheads with the local press since last season, when it banned the Southern Daily Echo from home games for breaking an embargo on an announcement about the club’s training ground.
This article appears in issue 247 of Media Digest.