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"Technotainment" 2018: Distributing Content Across Multiple Platforms


Speaker(s): Barbara Meili, Elana Sofko, Elizabeth A. McNamara, Jeff Brabec, Lateef Mtima, Michael Berman, Nancy E. Wolff, Paula M. Weber, Ronald C. Minkoff, Seth A. Metsch, Todd Brabec, Tyler Maulsby
Recorded on: Oct. 15, 2018
PLI Program #: 219395

Ronald C. Minkoff is a partner in the Litigation Group and Head of the Professional Responsibility Group. Mr. Minkoff is one of New York State’s leading practitioners in the field of attorney ethics and professional responsibility, representing attorneys in a wide variety of matters including law firm partnership disputes, attorney discipline cases, legal fee disputes and legal malpractice and professional liability cases on behalf of both plaintiffs and defendants. He also provides ethics opinions and advice to a wide variety of law firm clients.  In addition, he also serves as an expert witness in legal malpractice lawsuits and attorneys’ fees disputes.

Mr. Minkoff is a member of several Bar Ethics Committees, including the Committee on Standards of Attorney Conduct (COSAC) and the Committee on Professional Discipline of the New York State Bar Association. He is also the Chair of the Committee on Professionalism and Professional Discipline of the New York County Lawyers’ Association, a former member of the American Bar Association Standing Committee on Professionalism, and a past President of the Association of Professional Responsibility Lawyers. He has written extensively for the New York Professional Responsibility Report, The Professional Lawyer, The New York Law Journal, and other publications and served as the co-Managing editor of the New York Legal Ethics Reporter. Mr. Minkoff has served as an Adjunct Professor of Professional Responsibility at Columbia University School of Law, Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law, New York University School of Law, Fordham Law School, and Brooklyn Law School. He is a frequent lecturer on the law of lawyering.

In addition, Mr. Minkoff represents businesses and individual professionals and executives in a wide variety of commercial litigation, including business break-ups, securities lawsuits, and domestic and international trade disputes. He represents several law firm partners and law firms in partnership disputes, lateral transitions and law-firm dissolutions. And he represents an internationally known petrochemist in an oil and gas venture dispute. Mr. Minkoff is on the Executive Committee and Board of Directors of the New York County Lawyers’ Association.

Mr. Minkoff was named Best Lawyers’ 2011 New York Ethics and Professional Responsibility Lawyer of the Year. He has also been recognized by Best Lawyers for many years for his work in Commercial Litigation, Ethics and Professional Responsibility, Legal Malpractice, and Regulatory Enforcement matters. He has been named a New York-area “Super Lawyer” for Professional Liability: Defense Work and Business Litigation by Super Lawyers magazine for nine consecutive years.

Mr. Minkoff is a graduate of Columbia Law School (JD, 1980). He is admitted to practice in New York.


Lateef Mtima is a Professor of Law at the Howard University School of Law. After graduating with honors from Amherst College, Professor Mtima received his J.D. degree from Harvard Law School, where he was the co-founder and later editor-in-chief of the Harvard BlackLetter Journal. He is admitted to the New York and Pennsylvania bars and has practiced intellectual property, bankruptcy, and commercial law, including a decade in private practice with the international law firm of Coudert Brothers. Currently a member of the Advisory Council for the United States Court of Federal Claims and the BNA Patent, Trademark & Copyright Journal Advisory Board, Professor Mtima has held the post of Distinguished Libra Visiting Scholar in Residence at the University of Maine School of Law, is a past President of the Giles S. Rich Inn of Court for the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, and was a member of the founding Editorial Board for the American Bar Association intellectual property periodical Landslide. Professor Mtima is the Founder and Director of the Institute for Intellectual Property and Social Justice, an accredited Non-governmental Organization Member of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO).


Tyler Maulsby is an associate in the Litigation, Legal Ethics & Professional Responsibility, and Securities Fraud & White Collar Defense practice groups.

Mr. Maulsby represents individuals and entities in a wide range of industries including law, media, entertainment, technology, fashion, and education, non-profit, and government.

In his legal ethics and professional responsibility practice, Mr. Maulsby represents lawyers and law firms in litigation and counseling matters. Representative matters include: defending a national law firm in a multi-million dollar legal malpractice lawsuit; successfully defending a law firm in a motion to disqualify based on a conflict of interest in a complex federal litigation; representing lawyers and law firms in numerous fee disputes; securing a dismissal of sanctions against a lawyer in a federal class-action litigation; representing lawyers and law students in disciplinary and admissions proceedings; advising lawyers seeking to change firms or form a new firm; and providing ongoing legal ethics and risk management advice to lawyers and law firms.

Mr. Maulsby also represents clients in commercial and criminal litigation matters in state and federal courts. His recent experience includes: representing a large media company in an investigation by the United States Department of Justice; assisting several companies in their investigation and response to allegations of sexual assault and harassment; representing individuals in partnership disputes, dissolution proceedings and related business disputes; representing lawyers and law students in disciplinary and admissions proceedings; and securing favorable outcomes for several high-profile individuals facing criminal charges and related civil allegations.

Mr. Maulsby currently serves as Secretary of the Committee on Professional Ethics of the New York City Bar Association and is a member of the board of directors of the Association of Professional Responsibility Lawyers. He is also a member of the ABA Center for Professional Responsibility and the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. He frequently writes and lectures on New York legal ethics issues.

He is a graduate of NYU’s Gallatin School of Individualized Study (BA) and Tulane Law School (JD). Mr. Maulsby is admitted to practice in New York state courts and federal courts in the Southern and Eastern Districts of New York. He was admitted to the bar in 2012.


Barbara Meili chairs the New York Entertainment and Media Practice and represents clients in the U.S. broadcast and cable industries, including counseling clients in virtually all aspects of license and distribution arrangements, merger and acquisition activity and regulatory issues. Barbara also provides general corporate representation of clients in connection with purchases of programming entities.

Concentrations
• Cable television distribution agreements
• Retransmission consent agreements
• Mergers & acquisitions
• License and distribution agreements
• Regulatory issues
• Programming, marketing and ancillary services


Elana Sofko joined Chicken Soup for the Soul Entertainment in 2016 as Chief Operating Officer. Ms. Sofko brings over two decades of media and entertainment experience, always on the leading edge of innovation. Prior to Chicken Soup for the Soul Entertainment, Ms. Sofko focused on a range of digital business growth initiatives for WWE, including International expansion and localization of WWE’s digital properties as well as supporting the launch and international expansion of WWE Network, a subscription based video over-the-top (OTT) service. Ms. Sofko worked on the launch of satellite radio as part of the start-up team at the company now called SiriusXM, and has overseen strategic growth initiatives at ESPN, Nokia, News Corp and A&E Television Networks. Ms. Sofko earned a B.A. in English Literature from the State University of New York at Albany, and an M.B.A. from University of Connecticut, which included a semester in China at Peking University. Ms. Sofko’s qualifications include worldwide experience in distribution, monetization, digital tech and products, business and corporate development.


Elizabeth McNamara has more than 30 years of litigation and counseling experience in media and intellectual property law, representing publishers (books, magazines, newspapers, and websites), television and radio broadcasters, cable companies, and motion picture producers and distributors. Her litigation practice includes all areas of sophisticated IP, media and entertainment litigation at the trial and appellate level of federal and state courts, in such areas as libel, privacy, copyright, trademark, prior restraint, and reporter's shield laws.

Liz's clients include: Associated Press, Bauer Publishing, Cablevision, CBS, CNN, Conde Nast, Financial Times, Hachette Book Group, Macmillan, MTV Networks, NBC, Random House, Sesame Workshop, Showtime, Simon & Schuster, Time Inc., and Wenner Media.

Education
J.D., University of North Carolina School of Law, 1981
• Order of the Coif
• Law Review
B.A., University of Wisconsin, 1975
• Phi Beta Kappa

Admitted to Practice
New York, 1982
U.S. Supreme Court, 1998
U.S. Court of Appeals 9th Circuit, 2000
U.S. Court of Appeals 2nd Circuit, 1996
U.S. District Court Southern District of New York, 1983
U.S. District Court Eastern District of New York, 1983
U.S. District Court Eastern District of Michigan, 2004
U.S. Court of Appeals 3rd Circuit, 2008
U.S. Court of Appeals 1st Circuit, 2010


Michael Berman is an expert at navigating the increasingly complex world of rights negotiations, overseeing deals across the spectrum of entertainment and sports. His integrity, acumen and deep knowledge of content and distribution results in finely tuned deals that help our clients provide a widening array of content to millions of customers. He oversees the Business Affairs and Programming departments at iN DEMAND.

Mr. Berman began at iN DEMAND as Vice President, Business Affairs and Assistant General Counsel. His broad industry legal experience includes Scripps Television Networks and Time Warner Cable of New York City, and he served as a Deputy Attorney General for the State of New Jersey.


Nancy E. Wolff is a member of the intellectual property, media and entertainment law firm of Cowan, DeBaets, Abrahams & Sheppard, LLP located in New York, New York and Beverly Hills, CA. Nancy provides unique legal services for individual creators and multimedia companies of all sizes. Experienced in copyright, trademark and digital media law, Nancy offers full legal support to a wide range of traditional and digital media clients. 

Operating almost as an in-house lawyer, Nancy advises her clients on the registration and protection of intellectual property in the area of copyright and trademark, advises when releases are necessary under various publicity laws, and how to promote the client’s products and services without running afoul of the many advertising and privacy rules that are developing. She advises on creative ways to structure deals, make acquisitions or sell properties; reviews licensing and services agreements, as well as offering support to resolve any kind of legal dispute. While she explores the potential to resolve disputes amicably, with the aim to reach a fair settlement as efficiently as possible, if the enforcement or protection of her clients’ rights requires legal intervention, she is a strong and dedicated advocate for her client. She represents trade associations in advocating to changes to Federal copyright law as well as state laws that affect he various licensing industries.

ASSOCIATIONS AND ACTIVITIES
• Copyright Society of the USA (CSUSA), Immediate Past President
• American Bar Association (ABA), Intellectual Property Section; Committee on Copyright and Technology and Visual Arts and Dramatic Works Committee, and member of Intellectual Property Section Task Force on Copyright Reform,
• Media Law Resource Center (MLRC), member
• Section 108 Study Group, convened by the Library of Congress, and charged with updating the Copyright Act, previous member

AWARDS AND RECOGNITIONS
Chambers & Partners USA, “Intellectual Property: Trade Mark & Copyright –New York,” 2017-2018
Managing IP, “Top 250 Women in IP, ” 2018/19
• New York Metro Super Lawyer,” Super Lawyers, 2013-2017
• “Top 50: Women New York — Metro” Super Lawyers, 2015-2017
• “Picture Professional of the Year,” The American Society of Picture Professionals, 2007


Paula Weber, a Pillsbury Employment partner and member of the firm's board, litigates complex employment-related actions in federal and state courts and has wide-ranging ADR experience.

Paula represents employers in a variety of complex employment litigation matters, supplemented by compliance advice and counseling for large institutional employers and smaller companies. She has resolved a broad array of individual and multiplaintiff employment claims at trial and in arbitration, and has extensive experience defending putative and certified class actions, including both state wage and hour law and FLSA collective actions.

Education
• J.D., The George Washington University Law School, 1985
with high honors, Order of the Coif, Law Review
• B.A., Colgate University, 1981
magna cum laude, honors in Philosophy and Religion, Phi Beta Kappa

Admissions
• California


Seth Metsch is Vice President, Digital Media & Corporate Development Counsel, in the Legal & Business Affairs division of A+E Networks.  Seth has also previously served as Sr. Director, Business Development in A+E’s Digital Media division.  Seth counsels executives and personnel at all levels as the senior lawyer for A+E’s digital media, corporate development and strategy, information technology, and engineering divisions.

A+E is a global multimedia company, including the A&E, HISTORY, Lifetime, LMN and FYI brands, available in over 200 countries.  In addition to its television properties, A+E operates stand-alone web properties, apps, games, voice skills and SVOD services.

One of Seth's digital focuses is negotiating and drafting agreements for domestic and international digital media transactions, including video distribution through AVOD and SVOD platforms, and cable television system operators as part of "TV Everywhere" initiatives.  Another digital focus is development, publishing, and support for apps, games and websites, across various platforms.  He also advises provides primary legal support related to data collection and CRM and digital advertising.

He also works with the senior-level corporate development team at A+E Ventures to analyze strategic opportunities in areas to grow traditional business lines and diversify into new areas, including investments, joint ventures, strategic partnerships, and partnership activation.

Immediately prior to A+E, Seth was Associate General Counsel at Sirius Satellite Radio, where he advised various business units, including programming, sales and marketing, data services, consumer electronics, engineering and information technology.  Seth has also worked at Princeton Video Image (PVI), an Emmy award-winning provider of virtual and interactive advertising and visual effects for television (including the virtual first down line in telecasts of football games and the virtual advertisements behind home plate in telecasts of baseball games), where he instituted deal structures and procedures, as well as negotiated and drafted licenses, service agreements and a variety of other transactions; LuxuryFinder.com, an online luxury goods retailer, where he headed the business units for the website's portal and affiliate programs, negotiated business development deals and served as counsel; Parker Chapin LLP, a New York law firm (now part of Troutman Sanders LLP), where he was a corporate associate; and as a legislative assistant for U.S. Congressman Gary L. Ackerman, where he advised the Congressman on domestic issues, including telecommunications and technology.

Find Seth on LinkedIn (https://www.linkedin.com/in/smetsch/) where he also runs a Digital Media Lawyers group (www.linkedin.com/groups?gid=1890981), or follow him on Twitter (@SethDMC).  

Seth is a graduate of Tufts University, where he served as chairman of the students' judiciary panel, and of the Fordham University School of Law, where he was the Senior Articles Editor of the Fordham Environmental Law Journal.  Seth currently serves on the Board of Advisors of the Fordham Center on Law and Information Policy.


Jeff Brabec is Senior Vice President of Business & Legal Affairs for BMG Rights Management (US) LLC (BMG).  BMG is the fourth largest music publisher in the world and owns and controls over 3,000,000 million copyrights.  Brabec specializes in evaluating, analyzing, projecting income and negotiating music publishing catalogue acquisitions in addition to songwriter, co-publishing, administration, subpublishing, Broadway musical, writer-for-hire motion picture and direct license  agreements as well as music licensing and termination rights issues.  Previously, he has been Vice President of Business Affairs for both The Chrysalis Music Group and The PolyGram Music Group and Director of Business Affairs for The Welk Music Group and Arista-Interworld Music Group.  A graduate of New York University School of Law, he has also been a government legal services attorney. 

Brabec is the co-author of the best-selling book "MUSIC, MONEY, AND SUCCESS: The Insider's Guide To Making Money In The Music Business" (8th Edition (2018) / Schirmer Trade Books/Music Sales).  He is also co-author of the Music Publishing chapter of the 2018 Juris Publications multiple volume treatise "The Essential Guide To Entertainment Law".  He has been awarded the Deems Taylor Award for excellence in music journalism and The Texas Star Award by the Entertainment & Sports Law Section of the State Bar of Texas for Outstanding Contribution and Achievement in the Field of Entertainment Law and the 2019 California Copyright Conference Apollo Award  honoring leadership and achievement In the music industry.

Brabec is an adjunct professor  at USC Thornton School of Music/Business Division where he teaches music publishing and licensing, is Contributing Editor to the Entertainment Law & Finance Magazine and has written and continues to author numerous articles on the music industry. He Is also on the board of the Mechanical Licensing Collective (MLC) which was established by the Music Modernization Act to issue blanket licenses to digital music services for interactive streaming, collect license fees, match musical works with their correct owners and pay royalties to the  music publishers and other parties representing songwriters, composers and lyricists of the works which are streamed. .


Todd Brabec, former ASCAP Executive Vice President and Worldwide Director of Membership, is an Entertainment Law attorney, a Deems Taylor Award winning co-author of the best selling music business book " Music, Money and Success: the Insider's Guide to Making Money in the Music Business” (8th edition, Schirmer Books/ Music Sales, 2019) as well as the “Music Publishing Law” chapter in the 2 volume legal treatise “ The Essential Guide to Entertainment Law-Dealmaking” ( Juris Publications, 2018), an Adjunct Professor at USC where he teaches the course on Music Licensing, Music Publishing and Film, Television and Video Game Scoring and Song Contracts and a former Governing Committee member as well as Music and Budget Chair of the American Bar Association Forum on the Entertainment and Sports Industries. In addition to the Deems Taylor Award for Excellence in Music Journalism, he is the recipient of the  2005 Educational Leadership Award from the Music & Entertainment Industry Educators Association (MEIEA), the 2015 Texas Star Award for Outstanding  Achievement and Contribution to the field of Entertainment Law and the 2019 Apollo Award for Excellence in Leadership and Achievement in the Music Industry and is a graduate of the New York University School of Law.

During his 37 year career at ASCAP, he was responsible for all Membership operations, personnel and offices as well as signing many of ASCAP’s most successful songwriters, writer/artists and film and television composers in addition to significantly changing many of ASCAP's payment, distribution and survey rules including those that significantly increased the royalties for successful radio songs and film and television theme songs and scores. In addition, he was involved in numerous federal “Rate Court” proceedings as well as Consent Decree reviews.

He lectures extensively throughout the world at conferences, universities, bar associations, law firms and management companies and has appeared on numerous panels including PLI, the American Bar Association, the Game Developers Conference, DIMA, the International Association of Entertainment Lawyers, Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts, NATPE, Midem as well as many others. He has hundreds of published articles on all aspects of the business and law of Music and Entertainment. His Mitchell Hamline law review article, “The Performance Right: a World in Transition”, was selected by West/Thomson/Reuters as one of the best Entertainment Law Review articles of 2016.