According to the survey, more than 530 attorneys at 30 major law firms now practice in the area of video games, new media and interactive entertainment, so it is increasingly important to know which firms have the most experience and widest range of offerings. With over 30 attorneys on Pillsbury's multidisciplinary team, it is also one of the largest and most diverse in the nation.
"The numbers indicate that big firms are staking a claim and operating significant video game practices. The appeal for these big firms is that this sector lets them leverage all of their expertise across the board for a single client," said Interactive Age's Evan Van Zelfden in the press release announcing the survey results.
"We are delighted that Pillsbury ranked among the foremost video game and interactive entertainment law firms in the United States, said Pillsbury partner Jim Gatto , who founded and heads our Virtual Worlds and Video Game team. "We have been involved in this space for a long time, but this recognition validates our firm's decision to formally create and invest in the nation's first multidisciplinary team focused on Virtual Worlds & Video Games more than three years ago, and our recent decision to expand the team to cover other aspects of Social Media, Entertainment and Technology."
Pillsbury's Social Media, Entertainment and Technology team includes the Virtual Worlds & Video Games team and also covers other emerging areas such as: Virtual Goods and Virtual Currency; Location-Based Services and Mobile Applications; Augmented Reality and Mirror Worlds and other aspects of social media and interactive technology.
Among the team's many clients are some of the largest players in the industry, including Activision Blizzard, Disney, Playdom, A&E, NAMCO BANDAI Games America, Inc., and Playfish, as well as promising emerging companies such as nTeams (specializing in 3D avatar team-building and collaboration tools), re:Make (producing virtual gifting applications), Wowzers (a virtual world for learning-challenged children), and Rocket21 (a customizable youth site and social network).
"While the game industry has traditionally focused on entertainment, we also see an increasing use of games for educational and business purposes. We are excited to be at the leading edge of this trend and proud to represent companies that are finding socially meaningful uses for these technologies. One great example of this is our client Threewire, an award-winning developer that provides virtual world technology for the counseling of veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan,” added Gatto. "We also see more companies adopting 'gamification' strategies to incorporate game mechanics into non-game applications."
The business possibilities are endless, but also create novel legal issues that require an in-depth understanding of the technology, business models and legal and regulatory issues. It is for this reason that Pillsbury created a diverse multidisciplinary team of lawyers to serve the industry, including members from a variety of practices including intellectual property, corporate, tax, privacy, employment, health care and financial regulatory, among others.
Tom Resau | Senior Public Relations Manager
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