UEFA, Instagram, and X ruin a killer Euro 2024 celebration

The Killers assisted UK fans in celebrating England’s Euro 2024 semifinal victory yesterday by pausing their gig at London’s O2 Arena to project the final moments of the game behind the band. Viral videos across X and Instagram captured the elation that followed as confetti showered the crowd during a rousing rendition of “Mr. Brightside” — and now they’re being taken offline by the Union of European Football Associations (UEFA).

According to an Instagram takedown notice seen by The Verge, UEFA says the removed videos include content that “infringes their copyright.” Many of the impacted videos being pulled, such as a clip posted by photographer Bella Falk, contained mere seconds of the live match and are “transformative” enough to fall under fair use. Falk says she’s now “banned from Instagram for a month for copyright infringement,” after her video was removed from the service.

The video embedded below remains active at the time of this writing, and shows the moment that The Killers kicked off the celebration.

The takedowns especially sting given the UK’s fanatic obsession with The Killers. The band, and particularly its hit song “Mr. Brightside,” has developed such a devout fanbase in Britain that it holds Guinness World Record titles for spending years in the UK charts. “Mr. Brightside” is widely considered to be the country’s unofficial national anthem, so to experience it live as England secured a place in the Euro finals must have been euphoric, countered only by the dull overreach of UEFA.

It’s bad enough that the UEFA is attempting to strike down content that it has no claim over, but also disappointing that X and Instagram are honoring the requests. We have asked X, Instagram, and the UEFA for comment and will update this story if we hear back.

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