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Monday, November 23, 2015

The Transit Drive-In, which has occasionally shown night-time Buffalo Bills games over the past few years, is not airing tonight's game between the Bills and the New England Patriots -- because the NFL told them not to.

According to a post made this afternoon to the drive-in's Facebook page, the theater received a letter from the NFL stating that the drive-in had violated "the exclusive copyright rights of the NFL."

The letter goes on to explain that game broadcasts cannot be shown in exchange for an admission fee (the drive-in requested a $20 per-car donation for the recent Thursday Night Football showing, donating the proceeds to the Brian Moorman PUNT Foundation the Buffalo City Mission.), on any screen that isn't "a television type commonly used at home," or at a venue that doesn't regularly air sporting events ... without "the express written permission of the NFL."

The letter states that it hopes the airing was simply a misunderstanding.

Transit Drive-In Theatre owner Rick Cohen said he disagrees with the NFL's decision but will abide by it. He notes that the drive-in does not profit from showing the games and has donated all proceeds and snack bar proceeds to local charities.

Cohen adds, "When we asked the NFL if there was a 'form or process available in order to obtain the express written permission of the NFL to show individual game broadcasts,' we received no response."

Tonight's game airs on ESPN at 8:30 p.m.

East Niagara Post is the official media sponsor of Hockey Day in Lockport.

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