UK: Pause and record functionality

By Patrick Mitchell and Alistair White

Rovi Guides Inc (“Rovi”) lost its appeal against an earlier decision ([2014] EWHC 2301 (Pat)) that its patent was invalid for “obviousness”. The patent in question allowed set-top box users to pause the programme they were watching, whether on-demand or live TV, at which point a recording would be made on a remote server. This recording could then be watched back at a later point and from a different device, if required. In the earlier decision the judge held that the obviousness stemmed from prior art produced by the Digital Audio-Visual Council and common general knowledge. Read the rest of this entry »

Permanent link to this article: http://blogs.dlapiper.com/mediaandsport/uk-rovi-guides-inc-v-1-virgin-media-ltd-2-virgin-media-payments-ltd-3-tivo-inc-2015-ewca-civ-781/

UK: Commercial Copyright Infringement – consultation for change

By Patrick Mitchell and Mark Galli

Online or offline, intellectual property theft is a crime. With advances in technology and the popularity of the internet, more and more criminals are turning to online criminality and so it is imperative that our prosecution system reflects our moves to a more digital world.”

–  Detective Chief Inspector Peter Ratcliffe, Head of the Police Intellectual Property Crime Unit

The Intellectual Property Office (“IPO“) has launched a consultation process seeking views on equalising the custodial penalty for online and physical copyright infringement.  This would result in an increased potential custodial sentence for online copyright infringement and is targeted primarily at commercial-scale offenders. Read the rest of this entry »

Permanent link to this article: http://blogs.dlapiper.com/mediaandsport/uk-commercial-copyright-infringement-consultation-for-change/

UK: Regulations creating private copying exception quashed by High Court

By Sean Godfrey

The High Court has ruled that the Copyright and Rights in Performances (Personal Copies for Private Use) Regulations 2014 (the “Regulations“) which created a copyright exception in the UK for private copying be quashed. This follows Mr Justice Green’s decision in June 2015 that the Government had acted unlawfully in not putting in place a compensation scheme for rightholders.

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Permanent link to this article: http://blogs.dlapiper.com/mediaandsport/uk-regulations-creating-private-copying-exception-quashed-by-high-court/

HUB FOCUS: Tax incentives for TV programme making in Australia

Our global Media, Sport & Entertainment Hub provides insights into various legal and commercial issues impacting on this space.

Following our recent blog post about the new cultural test to be introduced in the UK for tax relief for drama, documentary and children’s TV programmes, we examine in this “HUB FOCUS” the tax incentives available for TV programme making in Australia.

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Permanent link to this article: http://blogs.dlapiper.com/mediaandsport/hub-focs-tax-incentives-for-tv-programme-making-in-australia/

AUSTRALIA: National Rugby League launches assistance for players who sustain catastrophic injuries.

The National Rugby League (NRL) has launched a “whole of game” Foundation that provides support for players who incur catastrophic injuries whilst playing rugby league. The Foundation supports players at all levels from grassroots junior football through to the NRL and will provide assistance for players who suffer severe functional disabilities (e.g. brain or spinal cord injury). The whole of game Foundation will provide funding to cover interim medical and other expenses in addiiton to insurance coverage.

NRL Insurance Scheme

The current $1 million threshold for insurance payouts available to NRL players was implemented in July 2014 and applies to most serious injuries (e.g. paraplegia, quadriplegia, career-ending loss of use of limb and loss of sight). The scheme also incorporates employment salary protetion for a period of two years. For more information on the NRL Insurance Scheme, click here.

Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy

It will be a novel test-case to determine whether players who develop chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), a progressive degenerative brain disease common in athletes who suffere repetitive brain trauma, concussions and sub-concussions, are able to claim from the Foundation if they are able to prove a causative link to their careers in the NRL. This issue has been strongly litigated in other sporting codes such as the National Football League, who recently settled a class-action lawsuit from former players – allowing for a compensation payment of up to $5 million per player.

Our unique Media, Sport & Entertainment HUB considers legal and commercial issues affecting the industries of sport, film, networked media, publishing, music and gaming across the world. Click here to sign up to this free service!

Permanent link to this article: http://blogs.dlapiper.com/mediaandsport/australia-national-rugby-league-launches-assistance-for-players-who-sustain-catastrophic-injuries/

AUSTRALIA: WADA v Essendon CAS Proceedings

The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) hearing for the World Anti-Doping Authority’s (WADA) appeal against the decision of the AFL Anti-Doping Tribunal clearing the players involved in the Essendon supplements saga has been set down for October. The appeal will be heard in Sydney, Australia.

The panel of arbitrators has been appointed, as follows:

  • Michael Beloff QC
  • Jim Spigelman QC (Essendon’s nominee)
  • Romano Subiotto QC (WADA’s nominee)

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Permanent link to this article: http://blogs.dlapiper.com/mediaandsport/australia-wada-v-essendon-cas-proceedings/

EU: Football Financial Fair Play Regulations Referred to European Court of Justice

By Alexis Fierens and Joséphine De Ruyck

In its judgment, the Court of First Instance of Brussels referred a case to the European Court of Justice (“ECJ”) for a preliminary ruling on the interpretation and lawfulness of UEFA’s Financial Fair Play (“FFP”) rules.

The FFP rules are measured based on the simple principle of the “break-even rule” and  were integrated in 2012 within the UEFA Club Licensing System and FFP Regulations. The first break-even assessment was conducted during the 2013/14 season. The idea is to prevent professional football clubs playing in the Champions League or the Europa League from spending more than their generated revenue. For example, if the revenue of Real Madrid is estimated at €500 million in 2015, its expenses throughout the same year can not exceed this figure. Where violations of this financial balance requirement occur, football clubs may be subject to severe sanctions including fines, player transfer bans or disqualification from the European competitions. In May 2014, UEFA imposed a fine of up to €60 million for breaching the FFP rules on Paris Saint-Germain and Manchester City.

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Permanent link to this article: http://blogs.dlapiper.com/mediaandsport/eu-football-financial-fair-play-regulations-referred-to-european-court-of-justice/

EU: European Commission declares Audiovisual Media Services Directive rules open for debate

On 6 July 2015, the European Commission launched a public consultation on the current Audiovisual Media Services Directive 2010/13/EU (“AVMSD”), entitled “A media framework for the 21st century”.

The aim of this public consultation, launched as a result of the rapidly shifting media landscape, is to invite all stakeholders, ranging from market players to individual users of audiovisual media services, to share their views on an array of issues related to the AVMSD in order to review the existing rules and offer a regulatory environment for audiovisual media services fit for the digital era.

Through the public consultation, the respondents can express their views specifically on several detailed questions which are structured by the Commission around six key topics, such as creating a level playing field, enhancing consumer protection, promoting European audiovisual content, etc. Questions include whether respondents are of the opinion that the geographical and material scope of the rules of the AVMSD are still relevant, effective and fair, whether the rules on commercial communications need to be amended, whether the distinction between broadcasting and on-demand services in relation to the protection of minors is still justifiable, etc.

The review of the AVMSD is one of sixteen key action points, presented by the Juncker Commission on 6 May 2015, in its Strategy to complete the Digital Single Market.

On the basis of the outcome of the public consultation, the Commission may propose a review of the AVMSD. The public consultation will run until 30 September 2015.

Our unique Media, Sport & Entertainment HUB considers legal and commercial issues affecting the industries of sport, film, networked media, publishing, music and gaming across the world. Click here to sign up to this free service!

Permanent link to this article: http://blogs.dlapiper.com/mediaandsport/eu-european-commission-declares-audiovisual-media-services-directive-rules-open-for-debate/

UK: New cultural test for tax relief to be introduced for drama, documentary and children’s TV programmes

By Holly Pearlman and Sam Churney

On 23 July 2015 the Cultural Test (Television Programmes) Regulations 2015 (the “2015 Regulations“) will come into force. This will amend the 2013 Regulations which contain a points based “cultural test” used to determine whether a drama or documentary television programme is sufficiently “British.”

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Permanent link to this article: http://blogs.dlapiper.com/mediaandsport/uk-new-cultural-test-for-tax-relief-to-be-introduced-for-drama-documentary-and-childrens-tv-programmes/

UK: BBC Privatisation Bill

By Oliver Kichenside and Emily Leach

On 29 June 2015, Conservative MP Peter Bone presented the BBC Privatisation Bill to the House of Commons for its first reading. The proposed Bill makes provision for the privatisation of the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) by providing shares in the BBC to all licence fee payers. The Bill was supported by Conservative MPs Philip Hollobone, Philip Davies, Christopher Chope and Scott Mann[1]. Read the rest of this entry »

Permanent link to this article: http://blogs.dlapiper.com/mediaandsport/uk-bbc-privatisation-bill/

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