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Tech giants line up for Thursday Night Football rights

Social media platform Twitter will face competition from at least three major rivals to extend its live streaming rights to the NFL American football league’s Thursday Night Football franchise.

The Recode website, citing two sources familiar with the process, said Twitter, along with fellow social media platform Facebook, video-sharing service YouTube and e-commerce giant Amazon have all submitted proposals to the NFL for rights to the 2017 season.

All four companies also held talks with the league last year, with Twitter ultimately winning out with a $10m (€9.4m) bid.

The NFL selected Twitter as its exclusive partner to deliver a live over-the-top digital stream of Thursday Night Football games to a global audience across all devices and for free during the course of the 2016 regular season.

Twitter streamed the 10 Thursday Night Football games broadcast by the NBC and CBS networks, which were also simulcast on cable television broadcaster NFL Network, securing the league’s targeted ‘tri-cast’ distribution model of broadcast, cable and digital platforms.

Recode said the NFL is likely to make a decision on its 2017 partner within the next month, with the issue on the agenda at this week’s annual meeting in Phoenix.