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Sports Marketing and Media Law (LAWS70275)

Graduate coursework level 7Points: 12.5On Campus (Parkville)

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Year of offer2018
Subject levelGraduate coursework Level 7
Subject codeLAWS70275
Availability(Quotas apply)
FeesSubject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date

Sponsorship announcements and media rights deals in sport can attract publicity like gold medals. The ingenuity of an ambush marketer may rival the game plan for an upset victory. This subject surveys the legal underpinnings of modern sports marketing and the role of the media, especially the new media, from the perspectives of key stakeholders: sports bodies, athletes, sponsors, the media and venue owners. Conflict between rights holders and those who claim commercial free speech at the fringe of official rights is analysed. This subject covers how specific new laws and increasingly intricate contractual allocation of rights aim to contain the ambusher. It will be of interest to lawyers, sports, marketing and media executives, and player agents. One lecturer is a barrister who has studied and written in the area, and the other is a lawyer who has served as in-house counsel for a public broadcaster for many years.

This subject considers the legal aspects of sports marketing and associated media in Australia. Attention is paid to the different legal needs of key stakeholders in sport. It involves assessing the impact on the legal environment of sports marketing and media rights in an era of increased commercialism and professionalism in sport, and of significant change in the technology of communication and marketing.

Principal topics include:

  • The commercial environment of sports marketing
  • Intellectual property and related legal principles as they apply to sports marketing: passing-off, copyright, designs, misleading or deceptive conduct, trade marks, trade names and internet domain names
  • Laws promoting competition as they apply to sports marketing and the sale of media rights: restraint of trade at common law and restrictive trade practices under the Competition and Consumer Act 2010 (Cth)
  • Olympic marketing arrangements and protection of Olympic insignia
  • Athlete marketing rights, including personality rights, misleading or deceptive conduct and defamation
  • Event, facility and organisation marketing, including rights to a spectacle
  • Television and electronic media, including broadcast agreements, anti-siphoning laws, virtual advertising and regulation of alcoholic beverage advertising
  • Regulation of tobacco advertising
  • Principles of sponsorship agreements
  • Ticketing.

Intended learning outcomes

A student who has successfully completed this subject will:

  • Have an advanced and integrated understanding of the legal principles of marketing sport and related media rights in Australia, including recent developments in this field of law and practice
  • Be able to critically examine, analyse, interpret and assess the effectiveness of these legal principles
  • Be an engaged participant in debate regarding emerging and contemporary issues in the field, such as unauthorised broadcast of sports events, controls over the use of social media by athletes, and laws concerning anti-siphoning of broadcasts of sports events
  • Have a sophisticated appreciation of the factors and processes driving parliamentary and sporting body revision of the legal and regulatory framework
  • Have an advanced understanding of situations in which sports marketing and media legal issues may arise
  • Have an understanding of sports marketing and media legal issues in an international context
  • Have the cognitive and technical skills to generate critical and creative ideas relating to sports marketing and media law issues in sport, and to critically evaluate existing legal and regulatory theories, principles and concepts with creativity and autonomy
  • Have the cognitive and technical skills to independently examine, research and analyse existing and emerging legal issues relating to marketing and media issues in sport
  • Have the communication skills to clearly articulate and convey complex information regarding marketing and media law issues in sport to relevant specialist and non-specialist audiences
  • Be able to demonstrate autonomy, expert judgment and responsibility as a practitioner and learner in the field of marketing and media law issues in sport.

Last updated: 29 March 2019