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2022/23 Module One: Sports, Tech and Data

Posted on 4 November 2022

In the first module of 2022/2023, Anne Rose and Sophie Wood are joined by CEO of Upshot and Non Executive Director at Brentford Football Club Preeti Shetty, Head of Legal at Red Bull Media House Liam Thorpe, Director of Corporate Affairs at Socios James Newman and UK & Ireland International Development at La Liga Keegan Pierce. 

The panellists will consider or considered: (i) the ownership of live match data and database rights in the context of the dispute between Sportradar and Betgenius; (ii) who owns or controls athlete data (including the implications of Project Red Card); (iii) challenges in commercialising sports data; and (iv) how new technologies are revolutionising the way in which sport operates.

Simon Leaf, Partner, Head of Sports
Mishcon de Reya

Hello everyone and a very warm and sporting welcome to Mishcon and the new season of our Sports Law Academy series.  The Sports Law Academy is a free to access academic distance learning programme designed for junior lawyers, students and non-legal professionals, for those already working in the industry as well as those looking to gain a practical and unique insight into contemporary sports law issues.  Our goal is to facilitate debate, examine key issues in the world of sport and share knowledge in order to improve industry standards.  We also want to promote diversity and nurture future talent as well.

We are going to hear from some really interesting figures in the world of sports technology and data and not only that, we are really lucky to have both Sophie Wood and Anne Rose from our own Sports Group who have acted on some really interesting sports, tech and data matters in recent months.

Keegan Pierce, UK & Ireland International Development
La Liga

One of our big initiatives over the past year has been the launch of our B2B services subsidiary, La Liga Tech so we are not only processing data within our own organisation and from fans and consumers but also advising other organisations on how they should be structuring their data strategy and their consumer engagement.

Angelo Mogan, Attendee
Entain PLC

From our perspective being a gambling operator I have had cases such as Project Red Card may be an issue for us down the line but it will be very interesting to see how the developments in this particular case may affect us down the line.

Preeti Shetty, CEO, Upshot & Non Executive Director
Brentford FC

From an Upshot perspective it is much more societal so the work we do with our organisations is telling them whether an intervention is working or importantly is not working. What has happened because you’ve done something, how do we know that and what’s the data telling you.

Anne Rose, Managing Associate
Mishcon de Reya

We often talk as well about the education element that needs to be involved as well when people are looking exactly what they are buying, whether we should be having standards in place for not only for education but for people to be able to understand what they are buying and also as well to encourage interoperability.

Liam Thorpe, Head of Legal
Red Bull Media House

I think this is where football could really look at using the technology for good is how that technology could be used to really engage with your fan base, give them more say in how the club’s run, even help make decisions.  I think that’s where the value of the technology is and I think that’s what brands and individuals have to really do is think about how they education the consumer or the fan.

Simon Leaf, Partner, Head of Sports
Mishcon de Reya

So sports technology and data are both really important parts of our strategy in the Sports Group here at Mishcon.  We act for everyone from the leading fan token providers all the way through to very exciting health tech and other wearable devices.  On the data side we have been involved in some really kind of high profile disputes and issues for our clients, ranging from acting on the defendant’s side all the way through to providing quite strategic advice to rights holders when it comes to how they exploit and commercialise the data that their athletes and their participants are generating in competition.

James Newman, Director of Corporate Affairs
Socios

You know what we, what we are talking about here is whether it’s an NFT and you’re buying you know, ownership of, of whether it’s a digital ticket that comes with utility whatever that is or whether you are buying a fan token that comes with utility of membership services that then can be resold.  That’s very different to taking a position on something going up and down that’s based on an event right.

Keegan Pierce, UK & Ireland International Development
La Liga

Every club has a minimum access to this media coach platform and often if you see a La Liga match on television you will see the manager’s with their media coach tablet doing their preparations and analysis of how the match is going.

Anne Rose, Managing Associate
Mishcon de Reya

So it’s a pool database effectively.

Keegan Pierce, UK & Ireland International Development
La Liga

Yeah it is a pool database.

Anne Rose, Managing Associate
Mishcon de Reya

Wow that’s really interesting.

Keegan Pierce, UK & Ireland International Development
La Liga

And plus the main principle there and there are a lot of people who are a lot smarter than me who are working on the ins and outs of this project but you know, the main concept for us with the data that is generated around that project is it needs to be available to all actors within the ecosystem you know, with the proper consents, with the proper frameworks but you know, we communicate with our players through an App which is called ‘The La Liga Player’s App’, every single player in the first and second division has it and they have access to their own personal data, to their health date, to their training data along with a whole series of other message, benefits, incentives that come with being part of the La Liga player family.  So that’s sort of our approach when it comes to that performance data side of things.

Liam Thorpe, Head of Legal
Red Bull Media House

There are a lot of terrible examples, there’s John Terry, there’s Paul Pogba and his crypto dragons, Mike Leone saying like you could never lose money on NFT, unclear 4.24 got that, I could go on.  Lots of very bad examples and I think you know, people like Associates and other reputable companies, what they are really trying to do now is re-educate people and I do agree targeting that older generation, or getting that older generation to see the benefit and making it easy to transition from web2 so your Facebook to Web3 to the metaverse.

Keegan Pierce, UK & Ireland International Development
La Liga

It’s been a pleasure to participate in today’s session, I think we’ve had some great conversations around data, around consents from consumers, around how data is processed and protected.

Anne Rose, Managing Associate
Mishcon de Reya

We had a really, really great event this evening.  We had, the first section was around sports tech, so emerging tech in the area so whether that’s fan tokens, NFT’s, the metaverse.  We then had a really great panel discussion around all of those things where we talked about data protection and the framework of data protection in sport which is a really evolving area.

James Newman, Director of Corporate Affairs
Socios

I think one of the great takeaways is just the amount of interest in technology in the space and it is obviously great to have someone like Mishcon who is able to bring together all of the, the areas of experience and knowledge that they work across and pass that knowledge back through in the, in the Sports Law Academy.

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