Prime Minister Julia Gillard says the Federal Government is getting urgent legal advice on whether it needs to make changes to copyright laws.
The Federal Court has ruled Optus is not breaching copyright by allowing customers to watch sporting matches shown on free-to-air TV on a short delay through its mobile TV Now service.
Media analysts says the ruling makes multi-million-dollar exclusive rights deals worthless.
Telstra has exclusive online broadcast rights for both the AFL and NRL, and its latest online deal with the AFL for the 2012-16 seasons cost the telco $153 million.
NRL chief executive David Gallop, his AFL counterpart Andrew Demetriou, Cricket Australia's James Sutherland, Tennis Australia's Steve Wood and the head of lobby group the Coalition of Major Professional and Participation Sports, Malcolm Speed, met government ministers on Tuesday.
They discussed the ramifications of the ruling and measures to protect their rights under the Copyright Act with Ms Gillard, Sports Minister Mark Arbib, Communications Minister Stephen Conroy and Attorney-General Nicola Roxon.
"What's a matter for us is considering whether or not there needs to be changes to the copyright laws in view of these circumstances," Ms Gillard said.
"We have said to them - and I'm very happy to say publicly - that we will urgently consider options here."
Opposition communications spokesman Malcolm Turnbull says any law changes need to be specific.
"We have got to be very careful that the amendments are not so broadly worded they have impacts on other activities," he said.
"What they need to do is focus... on language that is very narrow and very specific to the particular issue at hand."
Gallop says the sporting bodies have an urgent need for the Government to introduce new laws.
"A relatively simple amendment to the Copyright Act will fix it," he told ABC News 24's Grandstand program.
"We are talking about something that could seriously devalue our rights.
"You have effectively got an asset of the sports, which is the copyright in our content - something we consider to be valuable in our balance sheet, and it has ended up in the somebody else's balance sheet in Optus."
The ruling could seriously reduce the NRL's next television deal as the code prepares to renegotiate its broadcasting rights.
The current deal ends at the end of this year, with the NRL's administrators, clubs and players all awaiting the new broadcasting rights arrangements for how much cash the code has for the following years.
Gallop, who was coy on the money value the NRL would be seeking, said the ruling by the Federal Court has a "knock-on" effect to the rest of a sport's broadcasting product.
"You can talk about it in terms of the mobile and internet rights, but it has a knock-on impact across all the exclusivities that sports are seeking across the platforms," he said.
"It will impact across the whole negotiations if we don't get it fixed."
ABC/AAPTags: information-and-communication, broadcasting, television-broadcasting, business-economics-and-finance, industry, telecommunications, copyright, government-and-politics, federal-government, australian-football-league, sport, cricket, rugby-league, nrl, tennis, australia First posted February 08, 2012 14:35:06