Top Legal Issues - Sports Industry: Licensing And Deals
After an exhaustive search through the public domain, we have established that there are no preexisting reports revealing the top 3-5 legal issues facing the sports industry as it relates to licensing and deals. Moreover, there are almost no reports or articles that directly address this topic (especially for licensing and deals). However, we have provided helpful findings obtained through our research. Below mentioned are the helpful findings and an outline of our research strategy, to better understand why the requested information is publicly unavailable.
Helpful Findings: top legal issues facing the sports industry as it relates to licensing and deals
- Intellectual property rights and licensing issues cover 50% in esports.
- The esports industry is facing legal issues related to "the way the young audience consumes the content — predominantly via streaming platforms such as Twitch — and the complex relationships between publishers of the games (who own the IP in the game), eSports event owners and the growing number of professional eSports teams."
- The negotiation of licensing in premium sports media rights is one of the key areas of debate in terms of reserved rights.
- In November 2016, Sky Sports have blocked over 1,500 unauthorized live streams of fights. Since then, joint bids for major sporting events is a trend up until now.
- Collective Bargaining Agreement in NFL with the NFL Players Association (NFLPA) that will expire in 2021.
- The regulation of sports betting within borders.
- The suitability of Las Vegas as the host city for a professional sports franchise. It is now free to decide on "whether to legalize sports betting or not."
- This has become a hot issue in the sports industry leaving some of the key stakeholders who look this as "opportunities to monetize" whereas, "others raise concerns about the impact legalized gambling could have on the integrity of the game, and federal and state governments consider their roles and legislative next steps."
- By 2019, sports betting will become legal in the Washington DC.
To identify the top legal issues facing the sports industry that is related to licensing and deals, or research team started searching through legal platforms for sports and industry association reports such as LawInSport, SportsProMedia, and LegalSportsReport hoping to find the desired information related to the top legal issues of sports industry particularly about licensing and deals. But these reports only mentioned information about four key issues in sports media. This included that licensing of premium sports media rights is a key area of debate which has always been the question of reserved rights, Sky Sports identified and managed to block over 1,500 unauthorized live streams of the fight (a 2016 issue in the UK since Sky Sports is based in the UK and not in the US) and others. The search also provided the legal challenges in the sports industry but they were related to the traditional sports law issues, Labor relations in the NFL and to make sports betting legal. No specific report was found about licensing and deals.
Next, we changed our strategy and tried to find the alternative data points by looking directly through BusinessWire and Foley’s multidisciplinary Sports Industry Team hoping to generate information on the top legal issues of sports industry particularly about licensing and deals. These reports only mentioned about esports continued Growth and Investment, significant impact on the growth of esports over the past year and intellectual property rights and licensing issues on esports which is about 50%. But these reports did not specifically mention anything on the latest legal issues of the sports industry, particularly about licensing and deals.
Then, we tried broadening the research criteria by extending the requested range of years i.e. instead of just the for the years 2018-2019, we looked for data up to 2016-2017. We searched through other media reports and university published reports such as Forbes, CNBC, Marquette Education College of Law, and UNLV.edu hoping to generate information on the top legal issues of sports industry particularly about licensing and deals. These sources only mentioned about VR licenses to new entities and existing licensees in the year 2016, MGM bought the WNBA’s San Antonio franchise and moved it to Las Vegas, Emerging Legal Issues in Professional Sports but no specific information and appropriateness of Las Vegas as a host city for a professional sports franchise in the year 2016. The reports did not mention legal issues particularly related to licensing and deals.
Based on our research, we have established that the information on the latest top legal issues facing the sports industry related to licensing and deals is not available publicly. One of the possible reason for the unavailability of the required information is that the legal issues being sourced are not specific to licensing and deals thus the information about licensing and deals is not publicly available. However, we have provided helpful findings that were obtained in our research.