The inaugural 2008 tournament started on 18 April2008 and lasts for 45 days, with 59 matches scheduled to take place.
== Television rights == On 15 January2008 it was announced that a consortium consisting of India's Sony Entertainment Television network and Singapore-based World Sport Group secured the global broadcasting rights of the Indian Premier League. The record deal has a duration of ten years at a cost of US$1.026 billion. As part of the deal, the consortium will pay the BCCI US$918 million for the television broadcast rights and US$108 million for the promotion of the tournament.
20% of these proceeds would go to IPL, 8% as prize money and 72% would be distributed to the franchisees. The money would be distributed in these proportions until 2012 after which the share of IPL would go up.
Sony-WSG then re-sold parts of the broadcasting rights geographically to other companies. Below is a summary of the broadcasting rights around the world.
The winning bidders for the eight franchises were announced on 24 January2008. While the total base price for auction was US$400 million, the auction fetched US$723.59 million. The official list of franchise owners announced and the winning bids were as follows.
The BCCI had found itself in the middle of many conflicts with various cricket boards around the world as a result of the IPL. The main point of contention was that signed players should always be available to their country for international tours, even if it overlaps with the IPL season. To address this, the BCCI officially requested that the ICC institute a time period in the International Tours Program solely for the IPL season. This request was not granted at a subsequent meeting held by the ICC. 
Conflicts with the England and Wales Cricket Board
Because the inaugural IPL season coincided with the County Championship season as well as New Zealand's tour of England, the ECB and county cricket clubs raised their concerns to the BCCI over players. The ECB made it abundantly clear that they would not sign No Objection Certificates for players—a prerequisite for playing in the IPL. Chairmen of the county clubs also made it clear that players contracted to them were required to fulfil their commitment to their county. As a result of this, Dimitri Mascarenhas remains the only English player to have signed with the IPL.
Another result of the ECB’s on-going fear of players fleeing to the IPL was a proposed radical response of creating their own Twenty20 tournament that would be similar in structure to the IPL. The league—titled the English Premier League—would feature 21 teams in three groups of seven and would occur towards the end of the summer season.  The ECB has already enlisted the aid of Texas Billionaire Allen Stanford to launch the proposed league. Stanford was the brains behind the successful Stanford 20/20, a tournament that has run twice in the West Indies.
Conflicts with Cricket Australia
The BCCI also experienced run-ins with Cricket Australia (CA) over player availability for Australia’s tour of the West Indies and CA’s desire for global protection of their sponsors. CA had feared that sponsors of the IPL (and its teams) that directly competed with their sponsors would jeopardize already existing arrangements. This issue was eventually resolved  and it was also agreed upon that Australian players would be fully available for the West Indies tour.
Conflicts with the Pakistan Cricket Board
Many players from the Pakistan Cricket Team who were not offered renewed central contracts (or decided to reject new co ntracts) decided to join the rival Indian Cricket League. Two such players—Naved-ul-Hasan and Mushtaq Ahmed also held contracts with English Counties. The PCB decided to issue No Objection Certificates for these players to play with their county teams on the basis that since they were no longer contracted to the PCB, there was no point in not granting them their NOCs. The latter did not sit well with the BCCI, as it went against the hard line stance they had taken on players who joined the ICL.
Conflicts with other Boards
Smaller boards like the WICB and NZCB have raised concerns over the impact the IPL will have on their player development and already fragile financial situation. Since players from smaller cricketing nations are not compensated as much, they have more motivation to join the lucrative IPL. The latter has obvious negative effects on their national development of cricket.
=== Media restrictions === Initially the IPL enforced strict guidelines to media covering Premier League matches, consistent with their desire to use the same model sports leagues in North America use in regards to media coverage. Notable guidelines imposed included the restriction to use images taken during the event unless purchased from Cricket.com, owned by Live Current Media Inc (who won the rights to such images) and the prohibition of live coverage from the cricket grounds. Media agencies also had to agree to upload all images taken at IPL matches to the official website. This was deemed unacceptable by print media around the world. Upon the threat of boycott, the IPL eased up on several of the restrictions. On April 15th, 2008 a revised set of guidelines was issued by the IPL offering major concessions to the print media and agencies..
However specialist cricket websites such as cricinfo and cricket365 continued to be banned from providing live coverage from the grounds and from purchasing match images from press agencies. As a result, on April 18th major international agencies including Reuters and AFP announced their decision to provide no coverage of the IPL. 
The IPL has been criticised by a few politicians and feminists for bringing in foreign cheerleaders, which is seen by many to not be in the traditional spirit of the game, as well as being against extremely antiquated and ancient Indian sensibilities purported to be upheld by these naysayers.
Continuing with the saga of controversies generated during the IPL, Harbhajan Singh was filmed slapping Sreesanth in the face after a match, thus delivering yet another blow to the genteel tradition of cricket. Sreesanth promptly burst into a flood of tears, footage which proved popular with 24-hour news channels. Complaints ensued and Harbhajan Singh was banned from the ongoing IPL. The BCCI, which will take action independently, is yet to decide upon an appropriate punishment. There has been speculations that he may face a life ban.