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Games Industry Law Summit - Speakers

Games Industry Law Summit
Games Industry Law Summit - Speakers
By Sergei Klimov • Issue #74 • View online
We hope you’re all doing great, and that you plan to avoid any indoor weddings or corporate parties during the coming weekend to protect the other attendees from a possibility to bring back home, as a souvenir, some really special variant of the coronavirus – it’s just a few days, so please stay safe!
Meanwhile, we’ve got more news to share in the run-up to the event – which starts exactly one week from now with the Reception Dinner at the courtyard of Hotel PACAI – as well as the intro of all the nice people who will be presenting during this year’s Summit, see below:

But first, Metaverse
Following yesterday’s newsletter, a few of you joked about missing a metaverse panel. What are its legal implications? And if Mark Zuckerberg started to use it, will it follow the way of Libra, perhaps?
Libra's success is obvious from these frequently searched questions...
Libra's success is obvious from these frequently searched questions...
The thing is, we think it’ll take a few more years for this term to either vanish or stabilise. Perhaps you recall how “blockchain games stores” were all the rage one day? For example, Forbes (not Alex Jones!) had this to day –
3 reasons Why Mainstream Newspapers Don't Understand Games
3 reasons Why Mainstream Newspapers Don't Understand Games
I checked the platform to see what its topsellers look like, and I’m here to report that its no.1 game is a €9.99 product from 2016 which will take 23 days of mining to own, which sounds like the company’s plan to take on Steam is still in progress…
…on the other hand, it seems like with the other topsellers being from 2019, 2017 and 2014 respectively, they at least succeeded with taking on GOG.
Either way, let’s see if the currently discussed scenarios – “I cached out my in-game currency from Game X in bitcoin, and used it to buy the in-game currency of Game Y where I now spend more time” – will come true. The last time I checked, this kind of story was about as likely as Robot Cache disrupting Steam back in 2018 (when it was supposed to launch).
Badges!
The badges are here. As usual, the color on the front matches the role (in-house, law firm, etc.) –
– and, just to prove how serious we take the vaccination requirement, every badge bears the corresponding mark:
Please note that each badge, as usual, marks the events that a particular person has attended. Find those with 6 dots and ask them about the time when some folks fell off the staircase at Strange Love, or when another group of people went bar hopping upon discovering the (relatively) low price of ordering vodka by the bottle (alternatively, ask me about the time when the herbal tea at lunch got overcooked in a percolator to the degree when it was pitch black, and it took a few people saying “hmm, curious taste! what is it?” before we realised the mistake).
The notebooks are here, too
Bigger than last year, and of the same high quality, manufactured at the same factory (more photos show up when you click on the tweet below) –
GamesLawSummit
The notebooks are here. Every year, we manufacture them at Purpurs over in Riga 🇱🇻. They cost a small fortune but they are awesome, and we ourselves use them for design notes throughout the whole year. Each attendee gets one notebook inside of their attendee box! https://t.co/snndgHn1Ga
The Community Book arrived as well
Sorry to sound over-excited, but it’s really a big deal for us that this project came together and got delivered on time. Not without mistakes – I found 3 thus far, and I’m sure there’s a few more – but we’ll get better with every edition, as usual.
And now, the speakers: Country updates
The first day carries the updates on the specific regional legal landscapes from Alexandre Rudoni and Andrea Dufaure (FRANCE), as well as from Alexander Schmid (SWITZERLAND).
Most of you will be already familiar with the stellar work that Alex and Andrea do (also: congratulations on the amazing vaccination numbers in France! c'est très bon!), while Alexander comes for the first time – and is highly recommended by industry peers! During previous summits, we learned about the Turkish legal system, and now finally we’ll learn about its “little brother” that shares the same legal foundation =).
On the second day, we’ll have Ryan Black making the long trek from Vancouver to update us on CANADA, and then Burak Ozdagistanli to brief everyone on the new regulation in TURKEY (as expected, there’s more requirements for the larger global players to comply with specific local rules).
Following that, we’ll have another country that seems to be in the business of imposing more and more requirements – everyone’s favourite, RUSSIA. First, Arseny Seidov (for whom this will be his sixth Summit, congratulations!) will talk about the “landing law” (some call it “grounding”, both sound pretty unfriendly?) and then the inimitable Vlad Arkhipov, via live video link from St. Petersburg, will update us on more goodness also known as “Russian privacy laws” (I bet that those of you who got the recent directive of Roskomnadzor will be especially attentive during this update, and the follow-up Q&A).
What more to ask for?
I wish we had Japan and China, but the travel protocols being what they are today, it’s nearly impossible to come from there, and we also miss a few other experts that are held up due to logistics issues. The same applies to India: we had Virkam Jeet Singh ready to introduce the region, however the current travel rules made the travel extremely challenging.
But don’t despair, we’ve got two more regions that will have updates via live video links: first, Michael Boughey will join us from Brisbane to talk about AUSTRALIA. And as much as this country is associated with compliance lawsuits and its abhorrent treatment of refugees (Lithuania and Poland are about to join this club, by the way), Michael will have mostly great news, including the tax credit that is now available to the games industry!
And then we’ll have Vanessa Pareja Lerner, live fro São Paulo, talk about the legal updates that games industry must keep in mind in regard to BRAZIL.
Deep dives
“Deep dive” is the opposite of, say, the approach of Jeff Bezos to filmmaking (I’m sorry, I just have to share this list for those of you who missed it :-{===})
Brad Stone
For the gentle folks at MGM, here are Jeff Bezos's twelve ingredients for every epic story, from the Hollywood chapter of my book Amazon Unbound. https://t.co/8fFlmzLcOx. Good luck! https://t.co/qlz3EEBfSq
This year, we’re doing deep dive on use of MUSIC IN GAMES – a topic which kept our board’s meeting in Hamburg going on, and on, and on when we met last.
The panel is moderated by Graham Hann (TaylorWessing, UK) and features the brilliant minds of Marc Mayer (MSK, USA), Alexander Ross (Wiggin, UK), Claas Oehler (IHDE, DE) and Kuba Jankowski (CDPR, PL).
In addition, we’re going to crunch on the topic of NEW EU LAWS that’s causing quite some headache in respect to the games industry trying to prepare for these.
The panel is moderated by the famous author of “Legal Deathmatch 2019” Tobias Schelinski (TaylorWessing, DE) and relies on the brainpower and expertise of Christian-Henner Hentsch (GAME, DE), Katya Nemova (Wargaming, LT), Andrea Rizzi (Andrea Rizzi & Partners, IT), Ted Shapiro (Wiggin, BE) and Konni Ewald (Osborne Clarke, DE).
The third deep dive of this year follows up on 2019’s introduction to M&A, and is confused on EXECUTION OF M&A.
The panel is moderated by Mike Turner (Latham & Watkins, UK) and benefits from the hard work and insights of Canon Pence (Epic Games, USA), Paul Collins (Take-Two Interactive, UK), Roman Zanin (Wargaming, CY) and Stanislav Yushenko (Playrix, CY).
Cross-country panels
It’s one thing to know that your games company will be punished for doing a specific thing in Russia, and it’s quite another to know that a similar behaviour will also result in a steep fine in Turkey and Brazil – cross-country panels are really good at consoling the unconsolable young counsels who may initially weep at the demands of a specific region, but then with time learn that for each instance of prohibition and censorship there is another country that does the same thing in a more extreme fashion.
This year we have two all-star cross-country panels:
Our industry’s legend Paul Gardner (Wiggin, UK), helped by peers from other regions, will cover the growing challenges of YOUTH PROTECTION. Firstly, the requirements are quite different across the region. And secondly, in quite a few cases it’s not even clear when these requirements apply to games – and to which games specifically.
Paul’s colleague Sara Ashby (Wiggin, UK) together with one of the judges of Legal Challenge Karin Pagnanelli (MSK, USA) and yet another former judge of this competition Andreas Lober (BEITEN BURKHARDT, DE) will talk about the main events related to IP IN GAMES, including the recent litigation and the challenges of cross-border protection.
Fireside chats
Finally, we’ll have three fireside chats, helped by the fact that we will have real fire (and Icelandic vodka, if you missed this news – perhaps it will come handy when Jas will talk about the ways to handle pressure on the job?)
GamesLawSummit
Hey guys, we’ve been offline for a while as the number of ops issues this year has been a bit more than the usual share. But now everything is coming together nicely! Pictured here: we’ve got outdoor fire bowls from @hoefats to keep everyone cosy, and some @ReykaVodka with it! https://t.co/1sXmcZoMGy
The first chat is dedicated to LEGAL TOOLS: the automation (of sorts) that helps both law firms and games companies to be more efficient. Sitting by the fire are Jan-Peter Ewert (Valve, DE), Tamara Sakolchyk (Wargaming, CY) and Monika Gebel (Baker Mckenzie, PL).
The second chat talks about the challenges (oh god, it’s always the challenges at this event! maybe one year, we’ll talk about… opportunities? Michael, we need you here, with your good news from Australia!!) of OPEN SOURCE SOFTWARE.
Perhaps in your region this issue doesn’t raise any eyebrows, but some people here in the community paid in blood (their own or that of their clients) for the learning experience. Sitting by the fire is the OS expert Carsten Schulz (TaylorWessing, DE) and Katya Nemova (Wargaming, LT) from the team of in-house counsels.
Lastly, this year the dream of 2019 comes true in that we’ll have people on stage admit that their professional life may get hard – all the way to the breaking point. The chat dedicated to HANDLING PRESSURE covers a lot of ground, from “firing clients” if you’re a law firm chased by ridiculous demands to “trying to have an email-free weekend” if you’re an in-house counsel hounded by the requests from the C-level people (or their PAs).
Chatting by the fire are Jas Purewal (Wiggin, UK) who actually once took a real multi-month sabbatical, Rafal Kloczko (CDPR, PL) who just recently returned from an email-free holiday and Roman Zanin (Wargaming, CY), who somehow manages to sleep at night despite being responsible for the legal affairs of a company with thousands of developers spread across more than twenty offices (if you have a story to share about this topic, please page me and I’ll bring over the roaming mike!).
With this, I sign off for today, but will be back with more news shortly – as we start with the actual construction. By the way, we have one more company contributing as a supporter of the Summit – some of you will recognise them from a couple of years back. I’ll spill the beans when I get the printed material for a proper photograph.
Stay safe!
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Sergei Klimov

A newsletter about games industry's legal side, written for the benefit and entertainment of the folks attending (or considering to attend) the annual Games Industry Law Summit in Vilnius.

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Games Industry Law Summit is organized by Charlie Oscar Lima Tango Interactive Entertainment UAB