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Advertising, Entertainment & Media

Our team works with companies across the advertising, media (traditional, multi- and digital media), and entertainment ecosystems, helping clients successfully leverage new communication technologies and tactics to maximize consumer engagement and pivot in response to evolving regulations. We have proven experience handling the full range of content-related business activities, transactions, litigation, licensing and enforcement matters, as well as work involving terms and condition, policies, digital advertising, affiliate marketing, data privacy and security, and regulatory compliance.

We serve as trusted advisors and collaborators to some of the best-known brands, agencies, media outlets, and entertainment companies. Our team helps clients protect and profit from creative advances in content marketing/monetization, new business models and distribution methods, together with innovative IP portfolio management strategies. We also represent clients in regulatory actions and litigation involving contract disputes, First Amendment claims, and copyright/trademark infringement matters. When issues arise, we respond quickly and decisively with solutions based on both the realities of the business and the competitive environments in which our clients operate.

Key Contact

A smiling individual with a beard is wearing a gray suit, white shirt, and a tie against a plain background.
Carl Eppler

Partner

Nashville, TN

Areas of Focus

Advertising & Promotions

Clients turn to us for the day-to-day review of advertising and promotional campaigns from the conceptual stage through production, publication and distribution. We advise on matters governing the relationship between advertising agencies and advertisers, as well as the risks inherent to their relationships with third-party vendors, internet service providers, production companies and performers’ unions.

We act as members of many creative teams, bringing deep regulatory knowledge and commercially focused insights to help clients strike the right balance between what is timely and effective for their products or services and what is required of them under various state and federal laws. We also assist clients in responding to regulators, challenging advertising-related claims and bringing suit against competitors that make false or deceptive statements.

How We Help Clients

  • Reviewing advertising collateral across all mediums (e.g., TV, Internet, radio, print, social media).
  • Reviewing advertising and promotions for national network clearance rules and requirements.
  • Negotiating media buys using both standard IAB terms and made-to-measure provisions, as well as technology and data processing agreements.
  • Analyzing claim substantiation under federal and state laws and regulations.
  • Assessing and structuring surveys, scientific studies and other data for comparative, superiority and other advertising/product claims.
  • Reviewing and counseling on environmental and other “green” claims.
  • Reviewing product packaging and labeling under relevant federal and state laws and regulations (e.g., FDA, FTC Guidelines, etc.).
  • Counseling on federal, state and local laws regarding sweepstakes and contests, including drafting and reviewing rules, registration and bonding requirements.
  • Reviewing and counseling on promotional techniques using interactive media, including crowdsourcing, consumer-generated content, sweepstakes, and viral marketing tactics.
  • Assisting with e-commerce transactions and relationships, content acquisition, linking and framing, affiliate marketing, co-branding and co-marketing agreements.
  • Reviewing and counseling on use of social media platforms and influencer arrangements for advertising and promotional purposes, as well as counsel on the creation of social media policies for employees and marketing.
  • Advising on best practices related to behavioral advertising and related information privacy matters, including clients’ obligations under the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA), and other state privacy laws.
  • Reviewing and counseling on use of sponsorships, endorsements, product placements, and testimonials for event promotion and general marketing purposes.
  • Advising on appropriate uses of third-party trademarks, copyrights and other intellectual property in advertising.
  • Searching product names, logos, taglines and slogans for trademark purposes and registering trademark rights.
  • Assisting platform and website developers in their efforts to comply with various accessibility laws, including the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).
  • Reviewing and counseling on compliance with telephone, email and internet-related laws and regulations (e.g., TCPA, CAN-SPAM, DMCA, CDA, etc.).
  • Drafting privacy policies, user agreements and terms of use for websites in support of website-based promotional activities.
  • Negotiating and advising on advertising representation agreements.
  • Challenging and defending claims before non-governmental entities including local BBB units, the National Advertising Division and Children’s Advertising Review Unit.

Advertising & Promotions Contact

  • A person with graying hair and a beard is wearing glasses, a blue shirt, and a dark blazer, posing against a white background.
    Nilesh (Neal) Patel

    Practice Group Leader

    Cincinnati, OH

Music & Entertainment

With unparalleled advertising, intellectual property and multimedia law experience, our dedicated and well-connected team has the breadth of knowledge and experience to serve as powerful allies to artists, producers, record company executives, and other stakeholders in the music and entertainment industry. The team is led by AJ Correale, a nationally and internationally recognized entertainment lawyer who has worked in the music industry for over 30 years. AJ previously served as Vice President of Legal and Business Affairs at EMI Music and as a Director of Business Affairs at Sony Music.

Our experience includes drafting and negotiating thousands of transactions and counseling numerous clients on a broad range of legal issues—from financing recordings, talent procurement and publicity rights, to marketing and distribution strategies (including DIY strategies), copyrights and trademarks, to merchandising, touring and concert agreements, publishing, branding and celebrity endorsements. In addition, our entertainment lawyers have litigated and defended countless actions and cases for leading entertainment industry players, including award-winning artists, producers, and record labels.

How We Help Clients

  • Negotiating commercial agreements, policing competitors’ activities, and enforcing ownership rights so that clients can profit from the equity held in their catalogues and other IP assets.
  • Licensing strategies and agreements for music rights and/or celebrity talent for branding and advertising.
  • Advising on transactional matters involving merchandising, touring and concert agreements, name, image and likeness (NIL) contracts, and other content clearance issues.
  • Navigating Screen Actors Guild-American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA) clearance issues.

Music & Entertainment Contact

  • A bespectacled person with a beard is wearing a suit and tie against a plain background.
    AJ Correale

    Partner

    Indianapolis, IN

Media & First Amendment

Clients across the media ecosystem regard us as crucial allies in disseminating information to the public. We offer accurate, up-to-the-minute guidance on issues fundamental to our clients’ everyday operations, from providing routine pre-broadcast and pre-publication reviews to responding quickly and strategically to a late-breaking emergency. We know which techniques can be deployed before and after a story breaks to minimize legal exposure, and we stand ready to defend our clients against alleged defamation, invasion of privacy claims, and copyright infringement claims.

Our team has a keen understanding of media and First Amendment law. We can provide detailed analysis concerning newsgathering methods for in-depth investigative journalism, handle freedom of information requests and assist clients in gaining access to public meetings, courtrooms, and public records. In the multimedia and interactive media space, we counsel clients on managing online forums, user-generated content and online speech, as well as content sharing, procurement and distribution programs.

Our clients include national cable networks, media outlets, publications, television and film actors, writers, directors, managers and production companies, for whom we advise on assorted agreements, financing strategies, acquisitions and advertising law.

How We Help Clients

  • Pre-publication and pre-broadcast review and counseling.
  • Responses to requests for retraction or correction.
  • Responses to subpoenas, including motions to quash (e.g., defamation, invasion of privacy, Lanham Act).
  • Evaluating and defending against claims for defamation, invasion of privacy, related newsgathering torts, and copyright and trademark infringement and related claims.
  • Litigation of lawsuits including conducting and defending discovery, trying jury and non-jury cases and briefing and arguing appeals.
  • Access, sunshine laws, freedom of information (FOIA) and public records requests, and related First Amendment issues.
  • Assisting clients in creating and managing forums, blogs and hyper-local reader generated news.
  • Advising on policies relating to reader comments about news reports, editorials, blogs and other content posted on news websites.
  • Advising on the use of social media for the delivery of news and content.
  • Drafting and helping clients manage social media policies for their employees.
  • Drafting website terms of service and privacy policies.
  • Assisting in regulatory compliance and policy development regarding the use of “drone” unmanned aircraft.

Media & First Amendment Contact

  • A smiling individual is dressed in professional attire with a red tie and a blue suit against a white background.
    Kevin T. Shook

    Partner

    Columbus, OH

Litigation & Commercial Disputes

Our team has a long record of success in courtrooms around the country litigating cases related to publicity rights, defamation, deceptive advertising, invasion of privacy, and contract disputes. We also prosecute and defend clients in disputes regarding the alleged misuse of trademarks and copyrighted materials, along with website domain, Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (UDRP) or “cybersquatting” disputes. We help clients understand and skillfully navigate the legal grounds on which these cases are decided, fashioning solutions to problems without incurring the risks and costs associated with courtroom trials.

How We Help Clients

  • Pursuing false advertising claims against our clients’ competitors and defending advertisers, networks and affiliates against spam litigation in federal and state courts.
  • Litigating advertising/product claims in federal and state court and before federal and state agencies (FTC, FDA, Attorneys General, etc.) for false advertising, Lanham Act and related actions.
  • Conducting and defending discovery, trying jury cases, and arguing appeals related to sunshine laws, freedom of information requests, and the full spectrum of First Amendment issues.
  • Representing clients in litigation involving claims of hacking, theft of data, cyber-trespassing and other forms of unauthorized access to computers and networks by competitors, ex-employees or data thieves.
  • Prosecuting bad actors who have hijacked web domain names, in accordance with the provisions of the Anti-Cybersquatting Consumer Protection Act (ACPA), the international arbitration system created by the Internet Corporation of Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) under its UDRP, as well as country-specific domain name resolution policies.
  • Defending clients against alleged violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), as applied to websites, ecommerce and other online platforms.

Litigation & Commercial Disputes Contact

  • A smiling individual is dressed in professional attire with a red tie and a blue suit against a white background.
    Kevin T. Shook

    Partner

    Columbus, OH

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