She initially got involved in entertainment because her LA-based firm had an entertainment practice, and friends kept asking her questions about entertainment contracts. They often asked questions like "does this provision sound fair?" or "am I giving too much of a percentage to this manager?" From there, she took the initiative to research entertainment law on her own. She told me Google is a great starting point to find out if you're being taken advantage of, but she also filled me in on a couple industry standards - managers get 20%, agents shouldn't get more than 15%.
I asked Jamie about common mistakes made by artists and content creators who post stuff online. She brought up copyright infringement, which was to be expected. She warned against reviewing music videos and including footage from the music video without written consent from the copyright owner, or reproducing information that someone else already owns. If I find that I want to use images or video that are not open domain for my channel, she encouraged me to use Google and web resources like Legal Zoom to find documents and advice on how to get permission to use someone else's content for commercial purposes.
But, much to my surprise, she said the biggest problem is defamation. It's one thing to state a negative opinion on the Internet, but if you make a statement that affects the individual's economic value or income, the blogger is likely to be considered legally liable. She advised me to always be mindful of the money – it’s all about the money, and if you’re making money you shouldn’t be or imposing on someone else’s rightful earnings, your more likely to leave yourself open to legal consequences.
Jamie Wright graduated from the University of California, Berkeley with a B.A. in Political Science, and is currently licensed to practice law in the State of California. She can be reached on her official website.
Jamie Wright’s Official Website.