Media law firm Wiggin launches the Widget

News: 9th November 2010 by Louise Dodgson under Finance, Law & Music Business

Media firm Wiggin LLP is launching a unique new web-based service that enables record labels and music publishers to draft state of the art contracts safe in the knowledge that they are completely up-to-date and reflect the latest legal developments impacting the industry and its artists.

The Widget – which launches on 10 November – is an innovative online tool that takes the hassle out of preparing, updating and managing contracts in-house.  It includes the full range of standard contracts that labels and publishers, both big and small, use on a daily basis.

The Widget contracts have been developed by Wiggin’s team of top music lawyers and are continually maintained to reflect the most recent changes in law and industry practice.  They have been designed so the Widget can be used by in-house lawyers as well as label and publishing executives who do not have a legal background but need the reassurance that their contracts are watertight.  Clients can also use their own contract templates on the Widget if they wish.

The Widget enables music businesses to prepare and manage their day to day contracts themselves, saving both time and cost, but also to have the advantage of a Wiggin music lawyer on hand if they need one.

Alexander Ross, music partner at Wiggin, says: “We regularly see music business contracts that are either out of date or in need of major work.  In some cases these can be put right, but in others companies find out all too late that their contracts aren’t legally robust, and they can lose rights and revenues as a result.

“We decided to develop the Widget to take the time, cost and worry out of preparing, managing and updating day to day contracts in house.  It also gives our clients the ongoing reassurance that their contracts will always be properly drafted, legally sound and regularly updated.” 

The Widget is being made available on a subscription basis starting at £100 plus VAT per month.  Alexander Ross adds:  “The Widget is being launched at a perfect time given the economic climate.  As part of a monthly subscription, people will be able to draft a state of the art and legally binding contract for as little as £10, which is obviously an attractive proposition.” 

Subscribers are able to access all their contracts on the Widget’s security-protected web-based server 24/7, and they can use a search facility to find individual contracts in their library by name, by date of completion, by status or by other search criteria.
Wiggin is planning to launch the Widget in a number of media sectors given that it will be the first ever contract-based tool for the media industry.  The first launch takes place on 10 November 2010 at which Wiggin will host a rights licensing workshop and a demonstration of the Widget for AIM members at its London office (see below for details).  Other launches are set to follow for other media sectors.

Launch event
Wiggin will be hosting a rights licensing workshop and the independent label launch of the Widget on Wednesday 10 November 2010 from 5-7pm at their offices (Met Building, 22 Percy Street, London W1T 2BU).  During the event, Wiggin will hold an open door music licensing Q&A.  Guests will be able to discuss and put questions on compilation and master use licence agreements to the panel of legal experts including Rupert Skellett of Beggars Group, Michael Fuller of AIM and Alexander Ross and the music team at Wiggin.

Wiggin is the UK’s leading media law firm.  Recognised by many as the best in the media business, Wiggin is a specialist in film, music, sport, computer gaming, igaming, technology, broadcast and publishing, and has earned an international reputation for fresh thinking and innovative approaches.

The 65-strong firm takes instructions from broadcasters, regulatory bodies, sports businesses, production companies, telecommunications companies, film studios, record labels, publishers, TV channels and digital service providers.

Clients include six of the major US film studios, BBC Films,  the British Phonographic Industry, Channel 4, Condé Nast, Decca, Demon Music Group, EMI Music, Endemol, FACT, Five, HBO, ITV,  MPA, Manchester Utd, MySpace, PRS for Music, Party Gaming, Pokerstars, Shazam, Sony Computer Entertainment, Time Warner Books, Trinity Mirror, UEFA, and Virgin Media.

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