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J. Michael Keyes Image

J. Michael Keyes

is a partner at the international law firm Dorsey & Whitney in its California office. Keyes is an intellectual property attorney with extensive trial and litigation experience in cases involving trademarks, copyrights, unfair competition and false advertising. He has tried several cases in federal courts across the United States. Keyes has a piano performance degree and has written on the issue of music copyright. One of his law review articles was cited extensively in a case in Chicago federal court in a music copyright case brought against Lady Gaga. Read more on his blog

Recent Articles by J. Michael Keyes

Legal and Practical Implications for Athletes and Schools Following NCAA’s New Policy

On June 30, the NCAA issued an interim policy that will allow athletes at all divisions of the NCAA to “take advantage of name, image, and likeness [NIL] opportunities.” There are several legal and practical implications that flow from this interim policy change. A college athlete can now use his or her name, image, and likeness for commercial gain. While not exactly endless, the possibilities are massive. Presumably, athletes can now license their name to promote sports brands (think Nike, Adidas, Under Armour, and Gatorade to name just a few)…. By some estimates, the sports merchandising market over the last few years hovered around $15 billion. It’s about to get a lot bigger very soon.    

The Katy Perry Verdict Proves Our Music Copyright Laws Need a Tune Up

Our music copyright law is out of tune in several ways. The recent multi-million-dollar jury verdict this summer against Katy Perry and Capitol Records illustrates a lack of harmony between music creation and the copyright law that is designed to “protect” it. According to a California jury, Perry’s runaway smash hit “Dark Horse” infringed a Christian rap “Joyful Noise” by the rapper, Flame. The jury awarded Flame nearly $2.8 million in damages. If that verdict withstands an appeal, it will be a dark day for the music industry. I fear the clouds are already brewing. The verdict exposes some major structural problems with how our music copyright law works.