Both Sides Of US Copyright Wars Reloading For 201120/12/2010 by William New, Intellectual Property Watch Leave a CommentShare this Story:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Google+ (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)IP-Watch is a non-profit independent news service and depends on subscriptions. To access all of our content, please subscribe now. You may also offer additional support with your subscription, or donate.Two sides of the ongoing struggle to balance stronger copyright protection and access to knowledge in the United States are re-arming themselves for battle in 2011. By the looks of it, it could be a litigious New Year. The Electronic Frontier Foundation, a leading online civil liberties group, announced today its new Intellectual Property Legal Team, consisting of new and existing attorneys on its staff.Corynne McSherry was named intellectual property director, according to the EFF release. She has been a staff attorney at EFF for more than 5 years, working on cases such as one involving the Sony-BMG rootkit, and defending the Yes Men and other activists when they were sued by the US Chamber of Commerce for creating a similar website for political parody. Her practice focuses on fair use and free speech.Also on the EFF team is Senior Staff Attorney Abigail Phillips, Staff Attorney Julie Samuels, and Senior Staff Attorney Kurt Opsahl. Opsahl will continue a dual role on EFF’s Civil Liberties and IP teams.Phillips recently joined EFF after more than 5 years at Yahoo!, where she was senior legal director for copyright and advised product development teams such as Yahoo! Search, Flickr, and Yahoo! Video on a range of cyberlaw issues, EFF said. She now focuses on copyright and online content and will be central on policy work. Earlier in her career, Phillips practiced in the technology policy and IP litigation groups of Perkins Coie LLP in San Francisco. She also worked as an editor, designer, and programmer, including as the first webmaster for the Berkman Center for Internet and Society at Harvard Law School.Samuels is responsible for patents and other IP issues. She currently is overseeing EFF’s Patent Busting Project and assisting on Lenz v. Universal, in which EFF is fighting a claim of copyright infringement against a mother who posted a short YouTube video of her son dancing to a Prince song, it said. Samuels previously litigated IP and entertainment cases in Chicago at Loeb & Loeb and Sonnenschein Nath & Rosenthal, and earlier in her career spent time as a legislative assistant at the Media Coalition in New York and as an assistant editor at the National Journal Group in DC.MPAA’s New IP LawyerMeanwhile, among the recruits preparing to keep that EFF team busy is the Motion Picture Association of America’s new Vice President and Senior Content Protection Counsel, Karen Thorland. MPAA announced today that as of 18 January, Thorland will manage domestic content protection civil litigation and will oversee and coordinate MPAA’s worldwide civil litigation efforts. Thorland and her team will also provide legal support for the music industry group’s worldwide content protection department, MPAA said. She will be based in Los Angeles and will report to Daniel Mandil, senior executive vice president, general counsel and chief content protection officer.The position is currently held by Lisa Stone, who will leave in January to raise her young children, MPAA said. Thorland is a partner at Loeb & Loeb, LLP which she joined in 2001. She has worked on issues relating to copyright and trademark, rights of publicity and privacy, First Amendment, entertainment contractual disputes and appeals.Thorland has represented the major and independent film studios, producers and music companies, as well as interactive companies, internet marketers and advertisers. Earlier in her career, she was an associate at Jones Day.Copyright Alliance Executive DirectorAlso on the copyright holders’ side, the Copyright Alliance today named a new executive director, Sandra Aistars, who promises to raise the bar on the group’s IP legal focus. Aistars is currently vice president and associate general counsel at Time Warner Inc. She has a record of involvement in Washington, DC policymaking, such as advising the US Commerce Department on IP and trade negotiations.The Alliance is a relatively recent organisation with a massive range of supporting member associations representing the likes of major league sports, photographers, artists, news agencies, publishers, writers, and the movie, music, and software industries. It takes the angle of defending the rights of creators in raising the value of copyright.The outgoing executive director was Patrick Ross, formerly a Washington technology industry journalist who indicated he would seek to return to writing after four years as a lobbyist.Aistars has been at Time Warner since 2003, where she “coordinated the company’s intellectual property strategies; served as an expert to the US Congress, the Copyright Office, and various departments and agencies; and represented the company in cross-industry coalitions and technology standards efforts,” the release said.She has previous experience in Washington, DC, where she worked for more than 12 years as a lawyer and lobbyist on intellectual property and technology issues at Weil, Gotshal & Manges, LLP, and as the head of public relations and government affairs for a non-profit organisation.Expecting a Rise in Geneva DisputesSeparately, there may also be reason to expect increased legal activity in Geneva as well, as law firms have been bulking up their staffs in recent months. Today came the latest announcement, though not specifically IP-related, that Sidley Austin added veteran attorney David Roney to its international arbitration practice in Geneva. Roney, who will join as partner, has served as counsel in a variety of international disputes involving many laws and locations. His background is Canadian and he is closely associated with the International Chamber of Commerce. Sidley’s Geneva office was established in 2002.Share this Story:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Google+ (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)RelatedWilliam New may be reached at email@example.com."Both Sides Of US Copyright Wars Reloading For 2011" by Intellectual Property Watch is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.