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The Legal 500 Hall of Fame Icon The Legal 500 Hall of Fame highlights individuals who have received constant praise by their clients for continued excellence. The Hall of Fame highlights, to clients, the law firm partners who are at the pinnacle of the profession. In the United Kingdon, the criteria for entry is to have been recognised by The Legal 500 as one of the elite leading lawyers for eight years. These partners are highlighted below and throughout the editorial.
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United Kingdom > Scotland > TMT (technology, media and telecoms) > Media and entertainment > Law firm and leading lawyer rankings



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Burness Paull LLP¬†operates in ‚Äėa whole different league of professionalism‚Äô. The team is led by Grant Stevenson¬†, who assisted with Scottish Investment Bank‚Äôs ¬£5.2m equity investment and ongoing shareholder and board arrangements in TV Squared. Philip Rodney¬†is advising BBC Scotland on all aspects of defamation law, including reporting restrictions, Freedom of Information (FOI) matters and litigation; Legal director Kirsteen MacDonald¬†advised the client on its Paradise Papers investigation and coverage. Colin Hulme¬†is managing Sky UK‚Äôs rights enforcement across Scotland, which involves copyright issues related to the company‚Äôs on-screen logos, through the commencement of interdict proceedings in the Intellectual Property Court of the Court of Session. David Morgan¬†advises ITN on employment law matters, in addition to aspects of its news reporting.

Pinsent Masons LLP acts for a client roster that includes production companies and investors with advice on media and entertainment matters across film, television, music games and print media. Its strong contentious team has expertise in regulatory, criminal and investigation issues that are faced by media organisations. Yvonne Dunn leads on non-contentious matters, and specialises in film and television development, production and financing. Contentious practice head Jim Cormack is dual Scots and English law qualified, and has particular expertise in data protection and criminal law. He also has a niche in reputation protection, privacy and confidentiality matters. Legal director Joanne McIntosh is recommended for film and television investments. Notable clients include Creative Scotland, News Corp and News UK.

Brodies LLP¬†acts for¬†clients across the media and entertainment sphere on the full spectrum of legal services, including defamation, pre-publication and ‚Äďbroadcast advice, reputation management, privacy issues, FOI requests, and data protection. Practice head and regulatory expert, Christine O‚ÄôNeill¬†provides holiday and out-of-hours advice to BBC Scotland journalists and current affairs staff.¬†Martin Sloan¬†assisted the Chinese mobile gaming company, Skymoons Interactive, in establishing a UK subsidiary in Edinburgh and continues to advise the client on IP issues, contractual matters, employment and immigration law. Sports expert and managing associate Andy Nolan¬†assisted 77 Management with legal aspects of the Andy Murray Live tennis event, including sponsorship agreements, a venue agreement with SSE Hydro, a broadcasting agreement with Eurosport, a player agreement with Mansour Bahrami and various service agreements. Alan Eccles¬†is noted for his ‚Äėexcellent knowledge‚Äô of charity and media law.¬†Tony Jones¬†QC joined the team from¬†BTO Solicitors LLP¬†in June 2018.

Building on the media and entertainment practice at legacy firm Maclay Murray & Spens LLP, Dentons also draws on its international office network to advise multinational corporations on the spectrum of matters relating to film, television, digital, gaming, e-sports, music, publishing and advertising. It also has a strong track record in reputation management. Practice leader Ewan Easton successfully represented BBC Scotland in an application to the High Court to reinstate trial reportage that was posted on twitter, for which consent was subsequently withdrawn by the presiding judge. He is also advising Edinburgh International Festival on contractual agreements with live performing artists, which required a particular focus on broadcasting and copyright issues. Ross Nicol and Susan Snedden are also recommended for their expertise in the intersection between IP and media law.

Thorntons Law LLP’s team works across all forms of media, including newspapers, television, television production, gaming, music, the arts, and online platforms. The group also stands out for the content-risk service it provides to journalists and editors in advance of print and broadcast deadlines. Practice head Lesley Larg handles newspaper clearance work and advice on new product lines for DC Thomson & Company. She is currently advising Jacks Hoose Music, Ged Grimes and the band Simple Minds on copyright ownership and licensing issues around music the clients are developing for a US-produced game. Alastair Lang assisted Mark Beaumont MB Broadcasting and Media with sponsorship contracts with a range of third parties, as well as a global production agreement with Moonsport in connection with the client’s round-the-world cycling challenge. Scott Milne continues to advise brightsolid Newspaper Archive on its acquisition of content from Johnson Press and Independent London News.

Anderson Strathern advises creative industry clients on commercial and regulatory matters, with a particular emphasis in the publishing sector. Practice head Simon Brown provides pre-publication advice to Birlinn, which spans defamation, privacy, IP infringement, contempt of court and protection of journalistic sources. Alongside David Hunter , Brown is advising Merlin Entertainments Group on IP, leasing and licensing in connection with its Scottish visitor attractions. Highlights for James Blair included advising Rangers Football Club on numerous defamation and reputation management issues, sponsorship and online marketing. He is also assisting Rangers Media with contracts for the live transmission of Rangers matches overseas and for delayed transmission and highlights packages in the UK.

Boutique media law firm Bannatyne Kirkwood France & Co specialises in defamation and reputation management, both for claimants and defendants. It has represented several national newspaper companies and broadcasters, in addition to politicians, professional sports players and celebrities, often in highly sensitive matters. The team is led by Campbell Deane, who often advises the Scottish government on defamation law reform. Margaret Smillie and Rory Cowan have substantial experience in pre- and post-production publication matters. The group is defending Andy Wightman MSP against a defamation action brought by Wildcat Haven Enterprises in connection with a series of articles written by the client about the claimant’s business activities. Other past matters have included successfully representing Premier league footballer Allan McGregor in relation to proceedings raised against The Scottish Sun at Glasgow Sheriff Court in two separate actions concerning false allegations and breach of privacy.

BTO Solicitors LLP has a strong profile for reputation management matters, with particular expertise in securing the removal of adverse comment in traditional and social media. Practice head Paul Motion was successful in defending Trump International Golf Club Scotland in court proceedings for damages under the Data Protection Act 1998 relating to material published on social media and in the press. He also successfully represented Mohammad Sarwar at the Court of Session in a challenge to allegations made against the client by a former business associate, that were published in the Scottish media. Tony Jones QC joined Brodies LLP in June 2018.

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