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Specialist Guide to the

Global Leaders in Media Law Practice

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Copyright © Media Law International 2022. All Rights Reserved.                                                                                                              

Scotland has a growing reputation as a centre of digital excellence, with Global launching a technology hub in Glasgow.

Global, a media and entertainment group, announced the launch in September 2021 as part of plans to strengthen its investment in Scotland.


Scottish Government Minister Ivan McKee said: “Global is an important member of Scotland’s media sector and this investment will help it stay at the forefront of audio and advertising technology. The announcement is also further evidence of Scotland’s and Glasgow’s growing reputation as a centre of digital excellence.”


Other developments include growth in the eSports segment, described as having “massive potential”, meanwhile music market participants raise concerns that the industry has been left on the ‘brink of collapse’.


The Scottish Commercial Music Industry Taskforce was subsequently created to support the sector’s return to pre-Covid success levels, and has warned the government about the need to “act immediately”.


An open letter to the Government states: ‘If not immediately addressed, the consequences of the current indecision and inaction for Scottish artists, venues, booking agents, festivals, freelancers, promoters and production companies will be catastrophic.’


In legislative developments, MSPs approved Scotland’s Hate Crime Bill, which consolidates existing law and extends protection for the vulnerable. Justice Secretary Humza Yousaf commented: "I am delighted Holyrood has backed this powerful legislation that is fitting for the Scotland we live in.”


Mr Yousaf added: “Parliament has sent a strong and clear message to victims, perpetrators, communities and to wider society that offences motivated by prejudice will be treated seriously and will not be tolerated."

TIER 1

Bannatyne Kirkwood France & Co specialises in media law and intellectual property. The firm has a particular emphasis on defamation and is known for its in-depth pre and post publication advice. Lawyers represent clients including Associated Newspapers, The Scotsman Publications and Scottish & Universal Newspapers. The practice is also appointed by political figures.


Brodies is regularly instructed by publishers for pre-publication advice and pre-broadcast content review. With a client base that includes BBC Scotland and Channel 4, the firm’s core competence areas include defamation, contempt, privacy and data protection. Lawyers also work with clients from the video games and new media sectors.


Levy & McRae has established a leading media law department that is the firm’s strongest area of business. The boutique firm is a litigation-only practice known for its expertise in defamation law, commercial litigation and regulatory issues. With two decades of experience, the firm has represented some of the largest print publishers and broadcast networks.


Mellicks Solicitors media law is a market leader in the field. The firm has over three decades of experience acting for some of the largest print and online publications in the country. Lawyers offer pre and post publication advice to those clients on all matters which may arise including contempt of court, defamation, privacy, data protection, copyright and regulatory compliance. Lawyers also represent private clients in defamation and privacy claims and provide advice on reputation management issues, including complaints to IPSO.


TIER 2  

Burness Paulls media emphasis is driven by intellectual property litigators with particular expertise in sports-related matters. The team advises clients including Scottish Football Association, the Scottish Rugby Union and Celtic FC. Lawyers also work on outsourcing and overseas data transfer, data sharing, use of personal data online and data breach management.


CMS Cameron McKenna Nabarro Olswang assists broadcasters, publishers and gambling operators with matters ranging from defamation, advertising and marketing. The firm has extensive experience advising a vast range of industry cases, working from its offices in Aberdeen, Edinburgh and Glasgow. Lawyers are singled out for their sector advice on copyright, data protection and privacy.


DLA Piper focusses on several segments including film, audio-visual privacy, digital media and games. With cross-practice and cross-border experience, lawyers assist with production and rights acquisitions, staging and exploiting live sports events and advise on competition law.


Pinsent Masons lawyers advise on film and television investments, the procurement of new programmes, acquisition of broadcasting rights and multi-platform works including online games. The TMT group advises Creative Scotland on a range of matters which include developing the potential of film makers in Scotland.


Thorntons Solicitors focuses on publishing, social media, television and music sectors. Clients include individual music artists and international corporations. Lawyers advise on advertising, marketing and convergence between traditional media and online. In highlighted work the team advised on the acquisition of online streaming rights of funded television content and sponsored television programmes.


TIER 3

Shepherd and Wedderburn acts for global TMT organisations, regulators and industry associations. The team advises on regulatory issues related to market entry, product launch assessments and is routinely involved in matters connected with cloud computing, data protection and data retention.


TIER 1

Bannatyne Kirkwood France & Co   

Brodies

Levy & McRae

Mellicks Solicitors


TIER 2

Burness Paull

CMS Cameron McKenna Nabarro Olswang

DLA Piper

Pinsent Masons

Thorntons Solicitors


TIER 3

Addleshaw Goddard

Harper Macleod  

Shepherd and Wedderburn


TIER 4

Anderson Strathern  

BTO Solicitors

Dentons


 

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