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F1 TV restricts French services due to tobacco laws

F1 TV restricts French services due to tobacco laws
© Reuters
French fans of Formula 1 are confronting significant changes to how they can view historic races.

French fans of Formula 1 are confronting significant changes to how they can view historic races.

L'Equipe reports that F1 TV, the official Formula 1 streaming service, is now required by French law to block access to any archival footage containing cigarette advertisements.

Starting July 11, "replays, summaries, and pre and post-race shows" along with "documentaries" and other related content will be inaccessible to subscribers in France.

This enforcement aims to "ensure compliance" with France's stringent anti-smoking regulations, which ban any form of "propaganda or advertising, direct or indirect, in favour of tobacco or tobacco products."

The regulation will extend to affect some 2024 Formula 1 content as well, particularly due to the activities of teams like McLaren, which is sponsored by British American Tobacco. Despite BAT's emphasis on promoting a "smokeless world," their non-cigarette products displayed on F1 cars will also fall under these restrictions.

In response to these limitations, F1 TV has reduced subscription fees for its French audience.

French viewers can still enjoy live Formula 1 racing, as these new rules do not impact live streaming of races or Canal Plus' live broadcasts.

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